Aquaman used to be the butt of so many superhero jokes for so long, but that pretty much changed the minute Game of Thrones’ badass Jason Mamoa put on Arthur Curry’s scaled, skin-tight armor for Warner Bros. It’ll be great to see Mamoa speed-swimming through the seven seas when Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom releases next year, but until then, we’ll happily spy on the hunk and the cast and crew in this behind-the-scenes footage from DC’s Fandome event.
There’s not much to be gleaned from it, but man, some of that concept art is wild! And I’m weirdly thrilled by the possibility of Aquaman getting to ride his classic giant seahorse as opposed to the “sea dragons” of the first film.
The plot of the sequel—directed by James Wan and written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick—is still officially under wraps, but we have some good guesses about what’s going on. Obviously, the Lost Kingdom refers to the chunk of Atlantis that disappeared after the island sank into the sea and split into seven separate provinces. Both Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Patrick Wilson are returning as the villains Black Manta and Ocean Master, respectively, which doesn’t bode well for Arthur. Additionally, and this is just a hypothesis of mine, since The Trench spin-off movie was canceled, I can easily see those irksome piranha people’s storyline getting folded into Lost Kingdom, meaning they could be the larger overall threat. I’d be fine if they weren’t, though; I’d much prefer to give Abdul-Mateen II more time to flesh out Black Manta, who’s always been Aquaman’s best villain anyway.
In addition to Momoa, Abdul-Mateen II, and Wilson, Amber Heard returns as Arthur Curry’s love interest Princess Mera, Dolph Lundgren as her father King Nereus, Temuera Morrison as Arthur’s human father Thomas Curry, and Randall Park as the marine biologist Dr. Stephen Shin. Vincent Regan has replaced Graham McTavish as the ancient first king of Atlantis, Atlan. Meanwhile, Jani Zhao will play Stringray, a new character created for the movie; Indya Moore as Karshon (a villain who’s currently a mutated, telepathic tiger shark in the comics), and Game of Thrones baddie Pilou Asbæk in an undisclosed role, probably as a baddie.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is currently scheduled to premiere on December 16, 2022. And don’t forget about HBO Max’s adorable animated miniseries that just premiered this week.
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