Is DC’s First Latino Superhero Film In Danger?

By 25 July, 2023

This year has been an especially troubled one for DC in the world of cinema. After a terrible run at the box office, the company put everything it had into making The Flash a huge success, only for it to dramatically blow up in their faces. While many had predicted it was going to end badly, the bigger question now is what happens to the next DC films coming out, most notably the first Latino superhero in the form of Blue Beetle?

What is Blue Beetle?

Portrayed by movie first-timer Xolo Maridueña, Blue Beetle features the character of Jaime Reyes as the latest incarnation of the classic DC character based on ancient Egyptian themes. He is one of the leading Latino characters in the entire modern DC universe and his introduction in a feature-length movie would have been set to transition a string of younger characters into the franchise.

The film is set to be something like the recent Spiderman films from Marvel with the character learning to balance his normal life with the sudden acquisition of incredible powers and huge responsibilities because of it. It will also lean heavily into his Latin American heritage with many of Jaime’s family members portrayed by veteran actors from Latin countries for an authentic feel.

Is the Production In Trouble?

Aside from several changes at the helm of the film, there hasn’t been much negativity from the production itself. Since the flop of The Flash, DC and James Gunn have been quick to cut Blue Beetle off from previous films by including it in the new DCU instead of the DCEU that came before. It effectively treats the new production as a standalone film that would then tie into future films like Superman: Legacy.

Releasing close to Blue Beetle will be the embattled Aquaman 2 and it’s unclear so far how far the films will be related, given that the sequel film will naturally be tied to the “old” universe. 

Does DC Have Faith?

On this front, signs are not promising. To start with, the film was denied a reshoot request by DC earlier this year and beyond that, the marketing of the film has been lacklustre. Modern media lives and dies by the marketing effort, no matter whether it’s films, games or even slot titles. The amount of effort put into promoting new AAA games like Call of Duty or new online slots like the recent Razor Returns slot reflects how much faith the developer has in the property.

By that measure, DC may be gearing up to send Blue Beetle “out to die” to use the industry phrase. With minimal marketing and a much heavier focus on Aquaman 2, the company may just try to cover its losses without investing too much more into a film that, by current audience expectations, is set to be another flop.

Latin cinema fans unfortunately just have to wait and see how DC handles their first major superhero, although there is hope in that predictions of hero movies have a long history of being proven wrong!

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