While audiences will meet him next year in Justice League, 2018’s Aquaman from director James Wan (Insidious, Furious 7) will give the character played by Jason Momoa his proper solo entry. The “swashbuckling action-adventure” will see Momoa’s King of Atlantis expand the DC Extended Universe ever further alongside co-stars Amber Heard (as Mera) and Willem Dafoe (as Nuidis Vulko). The film’s main villain Black Manta has yet to be cast.
It has previously been reported that production on the film is scheduled for summer of 2017 in Australia, with director Wan seemingly teasing some aquatic shooting locations via his social media accounts. Now, we know when work on the blockbuster is set to officially begin.
According to Gold Coast Bulletin (by way of ComicBook.com), pre-production on Aquaman begins this month in Australia. Interestingly, this coincides with the end of filming for Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok in the same location: Village Roadshow Studios in Oxenford, Gold Coast, Queensland. In mid-October, cast members of both Justice League and Aquaman were shooting on location in Iceland — one wonders if any of that content will be used in the solo flick.
The film — written by Will Beall with input from James Wan and Geoff Johns — has the potential to be the most challenging DCEU shoot thus far. Underwater filming is notoriously, viciously difficult, compounded in this case by the problem of how to portray the characters speaking underwater. While the film must certainly have hired a cinematographer by now, information on just who seems to be unavailable. Justice League DP Fabian Wagner would seem to be a logical choice, and with post-production on the DC superhero team-up likely to take a full year (which has been par for the course with these films), shooting is bound to wrap soon enough.
The notion of an Aquaman movie started out as something of a joke, but star Jason Momoa is committed to taking the character seriously, and the skill and craftsmanship of director James Wan cannot be underestimated. After all, this is the director who spawned three lucrative, influential horror franchises (Saw, The Conjuring, Insidious) before seamlessly jumping to the Fast & Furious franchise and delivering the series’ biggest hit yet. Wan has promised a sort of “Raiders of the Lost Ark meets Romancing the Stone,” and while we await more information on his cast and crew, expect more information to surface as pre-production gets underway.