Will the Justice League movie be a cash cow or a huge flop?

In the past 10 years, superheroes have done more than just save the world – they’ve also saved movie studios with the hundreds of millions of dollars that their big-screen likenesses have raked in. According to Box Office Mojo, The Avengers holds the current opening weekend record with sales in excess of $200 million, and The Dark Knight Rises and Spider Man 3 aren’t far behind. Therefore, if you’re a movie studio with the rights to a superhero franchise in this day and age, then you have a reason to be excited.

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Then again, it might depend on the franchise. Zack Snyder’s highly anticipated Superman reboot, Man of Steel, hits theaters this summer, and since we haven’t seen the Last Son of Krypton on the big screen since 2006′s Superman Returns, the excitement level is high. The trailers for the movie look promising, and with a screenplay co-authored by Dark Knight mastermind Christopher Nolan, the picture seems to have a bright future.

DC and Warner Bros. hope to follow Man of Steel with a Justice League movie in 2015 – but that’s where things get complicated. Though the Justice League script is in the works, the movie hasn’t been green-lit yet. Additional details are scarce – Latino Review reports that if the movie happens, it will focus on five core League members with possible cameos from others.

Ultimately, the Justice League movie hinges on the success of Man of Steel – but some people, namely comic book writer Mark Millar, think the project will be doomed from the start. In an interview with SciFiNow, Millar calls the movie “an excellent way of losing $200 million,” arguing that the live-action logistics of characters such as The Flash and Aquaman would be “disastrous.” However, years ago, people might have said the same thing about Superman, and as we’ve seen, Superman movies are more than doable.

If the Justice League movie happens, will it be able to outdo The Avengers at the box office? That’s going to be a job for marketing. While the JLA characters have been around for over 60 years, none of them gained significant notoriety until Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, which began in 2005. Fortunately, Nolan’s works have converted casual moviegoers into die-hard fans of the Bat, and if Snyder’s Man of Steel does the same for Supes, then the Justice League movie could prove to be a real cash cow.

Image source: SlashFilm.com

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