DCU Chapter One: every upcoming DC movie and TV show plus known release dates

A promotional image showing the artwork for some upcoming DCU Chapter One projects
The DCEU is dead, long live the DCU. (Image credit: DC Studios)

DCU Chapter One marks the dawn of a new era for DC Comics characters on the big and small screens. With Aquaman 2 bringing the curtain down on the DC Extended Universe (DCEU), the new-look – and creatively named – DC Cinematic Universe (DCU) is ready to take its place. 

Former Marvel director James Gunn and DCEU producer Peter Safran, DC Studios' new co-leads, will lead development on Warner's reborn rival to the MCU, and the pair are set to usher in a new swathe of superhero movies and TV shows on the silver screen and Max for many years to come.

With DCU Chapter One set to introduce new heroes and villains – and reunite us with iconic characters we've seen countless times before – we suspect you're looking for a full rundown on what to expect from what's essentially DCU Phase One. 

Below, we've compiled a list of all of the new movies and series set to be part of proceedings. You'll also find sections breaking down every DCU Chapter One movie and TV show, including any known release dates, cast and plot details, and the biggest rumors surrounding them. This guide's final section also covers the DCU's Elseworlds projects, such as The Batman's sequel and Joker 2, which sit independent to Gunn and Safran's grand plan.

DCU Chapter One: every movie and TV show

In January 2023, Gunn revealed the full line-up for DCU Chapter One, with new Batman and Superman movies being the most obvious and hype-inducing announcements.

Unfortunately, there was only one confirmed release date among that slate, with Superman: Legacy confirmed to take flight in July 2025. Beyond that and Creature Commandos, which Gunn seemingly revealed is coming in late 2024 (via Threads), the schedule for DCU Chapter One, which is also subtitled 'Gods and Monsters', is a mystery. That said, two movies and two shows are coming per year, according to Gunn's announcement video above, so 'Gods and Monsters' could feasibly wrap up sometime in 2028 if he and Safran stick to that schedule.

Here's the full rundown of every DCU Chapter One movie and TV series (NB: any projects with unknown release dates have been labeled 'TBC'):

  • Creature Commandos (TV show, likely late 2024)
  • Superman: Legacy (movie, July 11, 2025)
  • The Authority (movie, TBC)
  • The Brave and the Bold (movie, TBC)
  • Booster Gold (TV show, TBC)
  • Lanterns (TV show, TBC)
  • Paradise Lost (TV show, TBC) 
  • Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow (movie, TBC)
  • Swamp Thing (movie, TBC)
  • Waller (TV show, TBC)

DC Chapter One movies

Superman: Legacy

Superman smiles as he looks behind him in a cover image for Superman: Legacy

Superman: Legacy will introduce a brand new iteration of the legendary Kryptonian. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: July 11, 2025
Director: James Gunn
Cast: David Corenswet, Rachel Brosnahan, Nicholas Hoult, Nathan Fillion, Isabela Merced, Edi Gathegi, Anthony Carrigan, Maria Gabriela de Faría, Skyler Gisondo, and Sara Sampaio

Dubbed by Safran as "really [being] the start of the DCU", Superman: Legacy will kick things off in mid-2025. Here's its plot synopsis, according to ProductionList.com: "Superman, a cub reporter in Metropolis, embarks on a journey to reconcile his Kryptonian heritage with his human upbringing as Clark Kent."

Deadline claims filming will begin in March 2024 in Atlanta, with also Gunn also confirming it'll meet its current launch date, despite the 2023 Hollywood actors and writers strikes. Superman: Legacy won’t retell the familiar story of Krypton's most famous son, Safran says (per The Hollywood Reporter (THR)).

Corenswet (Pearl, The Projectionist) will don the famous cape, with Brosnahan (The Marvelous Mrs Maisel) playing Daily Planet reporter/perennial Supes love interest Lois Lane. Corrigan (Barry) will portray Metamorpho, Merced (Transformers: The Last Knight) is Hawkgirl, Edi Gathegi (For All Mankind) plays Mister Terrific, and Fillion (Guardians of the Galaxy 3) is Guy Gardner, one of Green Lantern's many iterations.

Elsewhere, Gisondo (Licorice Pizza) has been hired as Clark’s long-standing photographer buddy Jimmy Olsen and de Faría (Animal Control) will play The Engineer – a character we'll likely see again in The Authority. Hoult (X-Men, Mad Max: Fury Road) will debut as Lex Luthor in Superman: Legacy, too, with Sampaio (Billions) set to play Eve Teschmacher, one of Luthor's LexCorp allies.

On the cast rumors front, industry insider DanielRPK claims Kurt Russell (Guardians 2, Monarch: Legacy of Monsters) will play Kor-El, Superman's Kryptonian father – Russell has since joked he'll "take on Marlon Brando", who played the character in 1978's Superman, as Kor-El (per ComicBook.com). DanielRPK also suggests Supergirl may show up, but she won't be played by The Flash's Sasha Calle.

The Brave and the Bold

A screenshot of The Brave and the Bold promo art for the DC Studios movie

The Brave and the Bold's Robin won't be the easiest Boy Wonder to live with. (Image credit: DC Studios)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC

Based on Grant Morrison’s popular run of comic books, The Brave and the Bold's movie adaptation – one of TechRadar's most anticipated DCU Chapter One projects – will see Bruce Wayne teaming up with his violent and narcissistic son Damian, a teen raised by assassins who goes on to become Bat-sidekick Robin.

"This is the introduction of the DCU Batman, of Bruce Wayne, and also introduces our favorite Robin – Damian Wayne – who is a little son of a bitch," Gunn explained in his DCU announcement video. "It’s a very strange father-and-son story."

Nobody's been cast yet, but George Clooney, who made a post-credits cameo in The Flash, told Entertainment Tonight there "aren't enough drugs in the world" to make him play the Caped Crusader again after 1997's critically panned (and campy!) Batman & Robin. Variety reports The Flash’s Andy Muschietti is being lined up to direct it, though, while a DCEU Leaks Reddit thread claims John Logan (Gladiator, Skyfall) is in talks to pen the script.

The Authority

An image from The Authority comic book showing various members from the superpowered group

DC Comics describe The Authority as the anti-Justice League. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: Maria Gabriela de Faría

DCU Chapter One will introduce The Authority, a lesser known team of antiheroes who feel right up Gunn’s street.

Based on Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch's comic series (released via DC’s Wildstorm imprint), it'll focus on the eponymous group who are prepared to use any means necessary to save the day – a modus operandi rather like Peacemaker’s heavy-handed quest for peace.

"One of our strategies is that we take our diamond characters – Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman – and we use that to help prop up other characters that people don’t know," Gunn said at a DCU launch party (via THR). "Like what happened with the Guardians in some way... taking teams like The Authority, which I know is just a spectacular idea for a film that's a completely different take on superheroes. It’s about using those well known properties to help lead into lesser properties."

De Faría should feature as The Engineer following her appearance in Superman: Legacy, but no-one else has been cast. A writer has been in place for "a long time", though, according to Gunn (via the DCU Updates X fan account) and the DCEU Leaks X account claims Matthew Vaugh (Kick Ass, The Kingsman) is in talks to direct.

Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow

A screenshot of Zor-El sitting down in Tom King's Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow comic book series

A new and long-overdue Supergirl movie is on the way. (Image credit: DC Comics/Warner Bros. Discovery)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC

Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow will be the first solo big-screen outing for Superman’s cousin since the Helen Slater-starring 1984 movie. The character appeared in The Flash and her self-titled CW show, though, so she won't be completely *ahem* alien to audiences.

Its story will be inspired by Tom King’s comic-book run, too, with Gunn explaining: "We'll see the difference between Superman, who was sent to Earth and raised by loving parents from the time he was an infant, versus Supergirl [who was] raised on a rock, a chip off Krypton, and watched everyone around her die and be killed in terrible ways for the first 14 years of her life, and then come to Earth. She is much more hardcore and not the Supergirl we’re used to."

Ana Nogeuira (Hightown, The Vampire Diaries) will write the screenplay, the search for a director is underway, Krypto the Superdog is expected to make an appearance, and a supposed scoop from the moderating team on the DCEU Leaks Reddit page suggests filming could begin in mid-2024 once Gunn has cast the titular character. In short: this round of new Supergirl movie updates prove James Gunn is learning from the DCEU's mistakes.

Swamp Thing

A screenshot of a Swamp Thing comic book cover as shown in the DCU Chapter One announcement video

The Swamp Thing comics have previously been adapted into movies, a cartoon, and a short-lived 2019 TV show. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC:
Cast: TBC

If Superman fulfills the 'god' part of the 'Gods and Monsters equation', Swamp Thing undoubtedly falls into the 'monsters' camp. The brainchild of Wolverine creator Len Wein, the comic series tells the story of brilliant scientist Alec Holland, who finds his consciousness merged with a bog after an attack on his research facility. 

This new take on the character will be helmed by James Mangold (Logan, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny), who’ll reportedly be taking inspiration from Watchmen creator Alan Moore’s legendary ’80s run on the comic. However, seeing as Mangold’s also attached to a Bob Dylan biopic and one of many new Star Wars movies, it may be some time before this DCU Chapter One entry puts its head above water.

"The truth is, I’m writing both right now," Mangold told Collider at Star Wars Celebration 2023. "Who knows what’s going to happen and what’s going to blossom first or second? [But] I’m doing Swamp Thing, there’s your scoop. It’s not a rumor, it’s happening."

DCU Chapter One TV shows

Creature Commandos

A promo image for Creature Commandos showing various team members, including Bride of Frankenstein, Ricky Flag Sr., and Weasel

Creature Commandos will be the first TV show to wave the (Rick) Flag for the new-look DCU. (Image credit: DC Comics/Warner Bros)

Release date: likely late 2024
Director: TBC
Cast: Frank Grillo, Maria Bakalova, Indira Varma, Zoë Chao, Alan Tudyk, David Harbour, Sean Gunn, Viola Davis, and Steve Agee

Superman: Legacy may be "the start of the DCU", but this animated TV show will be the first DCU Chapter One project to actually be released. Per Gunn (via the DCU Updates X fan account), Creature Commandos – and many of its DCU TV show brethren – have found writers, directors, and showrunners. Here's hoping we learn more about the creatives involved soon.

The antihero ensemble is led by Rick Flag Sr. (father of The Suicide Squad’s Rick Jr.) who commands a ragtag assortment of humans and monsters on missions for the US government. "[Animation] is a way to tell stories that are gigantic and huge without spending $50 million an episode," said Gunn, who’s also written the series.

Alongside The Suicide Squad's Viola Davis, Steve Agee, and Sean Gunn as Amanda Waller, John Economos, and Weasel (Gunn will also play a second role as G.I. Robot), Creature Commandos will feature a stacked A-list cast.

Grillo (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) portrays Flag Sr., Maria Bakalova (Guardians of the Galaxy 3) is Princess Ilana Rostovic, Varma (Obi-Wan Kenobi, Game of Thrones) voices Bride of Frankenstein, Chao (The Afterparty) is Nina Mazursky, Tudyk (Star Wars: Rogue One, Wish) plays Doctor Phosphorus, and Harbour (Stranger Things) features as Eric Frankenstein. 

Rumors abound that Anya Chalotra (The Witcher) is on board as Circe, too, but Safran and Gunn are yet to confirm her involvement.

Waller

A screenshot of Amanda Waller from one of DC's comic book series

Viola Davis's Amanda Waller, one of the few survivors of the old DCEU, is getting her own TV show. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: Viola Davis

This is where things start to get a bit murky for Gunn and Safran's vision. Viola Davis, who played Amanda Waller in various DCEU projects, has been kept on as the character in the DCU. Rather than give Warner Bros. Discovery's new-look superhero franchise a clean slate, then, there seems there'll be some muddy crossover between it and its forebear.

Regardless, following her voicing Task Force X boss Waller in Creature Commandos, Davis will headline this live-action Peacemaker spin-off on Max, aka one of the world's best streaming services, where she'll team up with members of Team Peacemaker.

"We’re using the same actors, [and] this is a continuation of Peacemaker," Gunn said during the DCU's grand unveiling (per Deadline). Christal Henry (Watchmen) and Jeremy Carver (Doom Patrol)will write this series' scripts.

Lanterns

A promotional image for DC Studios' Lanterns HBO Max live-action TV show

You wouldn't know it from this promo image, but Lanterns will owe a lot to True Detective. (Image credit: DC Studios)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC (although Nathan Fillion's Gary Gardner could cameo)

2011's much-derided Ryan Reynolds-starring Green Lantern may have killed a franchise before it even started, but – more than a decade later – DC has rediscovered its *ahem* Corps values. Entirely separate from a now abandoned TV show from Arrow-verse overseer Greg Berlanti (see this THR article to learn more), this DCU Chapter One show will take inspiration from an unexpected source.

"Our vision for this is True Detective," Safran told reporters at the DCU's press unveiling. "It’s terrestrial-based and it’s got two of our favorite Green Lanterns, Hal Jordan and John Stewart. It plays a really big role in the main story that we’re telling across our film and television. This is a very important show for us."

DCEU Leaks Reddit users believe Damon Lindelof (Lost, Watchmen TV series) has secretly joined as series producer, but official details – Lindelof's potential involvement or otherwise – are unknown.

Paradise Lost

A screenshot of a comic panel page used to depict the DCU's Paradise Lost TV show

Paradise Lost is set on Themyscira, Wonder Woman's idyllic island home. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC

Lanterns isn’t the only DCU Chapter One release taking its cues from one of the best Max shows, because Paradise Lost will go back to Wonder Woman’s island home for some political in-fighting. "It’s going to be a Game of Thrones-ish story about Themyscira, the home of the Amazons and the birthplace of Wonder Woman," Safran previous teased. "This drama is really about the political intrigue behind this society of all women."

With Wonder Woman 3 looking increasingly unlikely to happen, Paradise Lost seems like an intriguing way to keep Themyscira (aka Paradise Island) and the Amazonian superhero alive. Don’t be surprised if the new show is used as a back door to introduce a new version of Wonder Woman, though, with one of DC’s traditional superstar trinity, alongside Batman and Superman, all but certain to crop up at some stage.

Booster Gold

A promotional image of Booster Gold smiling for his DCU TV series

Booster Gold is coming back from the future to headline his own DCU TV show. (Image credit: DC Studios)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC

If your first thought was "...who???" when you saw this DCU Chapter One project, you’re not alone. Booster Gold, aka Michael Jon Carter, is arguably the most unlikely superhero on the 'Gods and Monsters' roster, but – if you’ve seen any of Gunn’s previous output – you’ll understand why this lesser known comic book appealed to the director's sensibilities. 

For the uninitiated: it’s the story of a guy – read: loser – from the future who comes back in time to the present and uses basic future tech to convince everyone he’s a superhero. Or, as Gunn put it: "It's the superhero story of imposter syndrome".

Like many DCU Chapter One projects, there are very few details concerning this one, but online speculation has nebulously placed Chris Pratt's hat in the ring for the role (NB: The Super Mario Bros. Movie and Guardians star is yet to comment on those rumors and/or express his own interest in playing Carter).

Arkham

A screenshot of the Arkham Asylum gates from DC Comics

One of Matt Reeves' The Batman spin-offs will be set in the DCU, for some reason. (Image credit: DC Comics)

Release date: TBC
Director: TBC
Cast: TBC

Like Waller, this horror-tinged DCU series is going to blur the lines between Gunn and Safran's main universe and that of its Elseworlds siblings (more on these below). It hasn't actually been confirmed as a 'Gods and Monsters' production yet, so we've left it off the list at the start of this article for now.

Originally billed as a spin-off from Matt Reeves' The Batman that would exist in the Robert Pattinson-fronted Dark Knight universe, Gunn recently confirmed Arkham was being developed as a DCU TV show. We're unsure how this'll work exactly, or who else is involved, but we might find out more information in the coming months.

Peacemaker season 2

A promotional image for Peacemaker season 1 on Max showing the lead character saluting someone

Peacemaker is getting a second season as part of the DCU. (Image credit: WarnerMedia)

Release date: TBC
Director: James Gunn
Cast: John Cena

Although it existed as a TV spin-off of The Suicide Squad in the DCEU, Gunn is making a sequel season of it R-rated series Peacemaker, which will also sit under the DCU banner (yep, there's universal crossing of the streams again!). Like Arkham, we haven't included in the list at this article's beginning as Gunn hasn't said it's part of Chapter One thus far.

Gunn told Michael Rosenbaum’s Inside of You podcast (via Collider) that he’ll move onto Peacemaker season 2 when he’s done with Superman: Legacy. Providing a brief update during a brief conversation with Variety, Cena said: "I know they're shifting around some things around over at DC, but I know that James Gunn's made some statements that we're going in for [Peacemaker] season 2, and what he says usually he does."

It's unclear which other Team Peacemaker characters might make the leap to the DCU, but we'd expect Davis' Waller, Jennifer Holland's Emilia Harcourt, Steve Agee's John Economos, and Danielle Brooks' Leota Adebayo at the very least. Lastly, DCEU Leaks suggest filming will begin in late 2024, although that'll depend on whether principal photography has ended on Superman: Legacy.

DC Elseworlds: The Batman sequel and beyond

Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck in the Joker movie

Joker sequel Folie à Deux will be released under the DCU's Elseworlds banner. (Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Non-DCEU releases, including The Batman and Joker, were among Warner Bros’ biggest box-office hits in recent years, so it's a smart move that their sequels and spin-offs. won’t be entirely restricted to Gunn and Safran’s new-look DC Universe. Instead, they'll be released under the Elseworlds banner, a nod to a DC Comics imprint of the same name.

However, Gunn has said DC Studios won’t go overboard on stories that exist outside their main universe's continuity. "The bar for Elseworlds tales is going to have to be higher than the bar for something within DCU," he said in a DCU press conference (via Collider). "Not that we’re not always going to have a high bar, but it’s got to be something really special for us to tell that story outside of our regular continuity, and to spend the money on it to make it."

Here are the three DC Elseworlds releases we know of so far:

Joker: Folie à Deux

Harleen Quinzel holds Arthur Fleck's face in Joker: Folie à Deux

Joker: Folie à Deux will be a musical crime thriller. (Image credit: Todd Phillips/Warner Bros. Pictures)

Release date: October 4, 2024
Director: Todd Phillips
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Lady Gaga, Zazie Beetz, Brendan Gleeson, Catherine Keener, Jacob Lofland, and Harry Lawtey

The sequel to 2019 monster hit Joker – controversially one of the best superhero movies – will arrive in theaters ahead of Halloween 2024. Like its predecessor, it'll star Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, while Lady Gaga will portray Doctor Harleen Quinzel, who goes onto become Joker's on-off love interest and another iconic Batman villain in Harley Quinn.

As for its story, Joker 2 is being billed as a musical crime thriller, and it'll likely follow the tale from DC Comics where Quinzel is assigned as Joker's (Fleck in this universe) therapist. Cast-wise, Beetz is back as Sophie Dumond, Fleck's former neighbor from the first film. The other actors list above have been cast in undisclosed roles.

The Penguin

Oswald Cobblepot stands on a balcony looking behind him in The Penguin Max TV show

The Penguin is currently being filmed. (Image credit: Macall Polay/Max)

Release date: likely late 2024
Director: Craig Zobel
Cast: Colin Farrell, Cristin Milioti, Clancy Brown, Michael Zegen, and Michael Kelly

The first spin-off set in Reeves' Bat-Verse, The Penguin will see Farrell don his prosthetic makeup and fat suit once more to play Oswald Cobblepot, who makes a play to become Gotham's new crime lord in – spoiler alert – the wake of Carmine Falcone's death in The Batman. It'll comprise eight episodes, too.

Milioti (How I Met Your Mother) will play Sophia Falcone, Carmine's daughter who battles Cobblepot for control of Gotham's criminal underworld. Brown has been cast as Salvator Maroni, another of Gotham's mob bosses, while Zegen is set to portray Alberto Falcone, Sophia's son. Finally, Kelly will play Johnny Vitti, the underboss of the Falcone crime family.

Freelance entertainment critic Rendy Jones described The Penguin as a "classic noir" series when seeing some early footage during a press event. Several episodes were reportedly shot pre-2023 actors strike (per Variety), with filming on the miniseries' final installments starting up in November 2023 after the industrial action ended (via Deadline).

The Batman – Part II

Robert Pattinson stars as the Dark Knight in The Batman film

The Batman is getting a sequel in late 2025. (Image credit: Jonathan Olley/Warner Bros.)

Release date: October 3, 2025
Director: Matt Reeves
Cast: Robert Pattinson

The follow-up to 2022's detective noir take on the Caped Crusader – find out how to watch the Batman movies in order while you're here – isn't set to arrive in theaters for another 22 months (at the time of writing).

Still, we know tidbits about its development, with Reeves returning to direct and co-write the script (Mattson Tomlin will co-pen it), and Pattinson reprising his role as Gotham's protector-in-chief. Filming was supposed to start in November 2023 in Leavsden, England, but Gunn took to Threads in mid-December to say he was yet to see a script, so it shouldn't have entered full production yet.

Pattinson and Reeves have been open about the characters they'd like to introduce in The Batman – Part II as well, with the pair rattling off iconic Batman individuals/villainous groups including Robin, Mr. Freeze, Hush, Calendar Man, and the Court of Owls. Barry Keoghan has also seemingly teased he'll be back as Joker in the sequel (per ETalk).


Want to read more about the various DC movies and shows before DCU Chapter One kicks off? Check out our guide on how to watch the DC movies in order, see what the best Batman movies are, or find out which DC films made it onto our best Max movies list.

Richard Edwards

Richard is a freelance journalist specialising in movies and TV, primarily of the sci-fi and fantasy variety. An early encounter with a certain galaxy far, far away started a lifelong love affair with outer space, and these days Richard's happiest geeking out about Star Wars, Star Trek, Marvel and other long-running pop culture franchises. In a previous life he was editor of legendary sci-fi magazine SFX, where he got to interview many of the biggest names in the business – though he'll always have a soft spot for Jeff Goldblum who (somewhat bizarrely) thought Richard's name was Winter.

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