Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom: Everything We Know About The DC Sequel
Aquaman 2 arrives in 2022, and this is what we know so far.
The 2018 movie Aquaman came at the right time for DC. Despite the box office success of films such as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad, they were critically panned, with the subsequent team-up movie Justice League both a critical and commercial failure. Wonder Woman, released in summer 2017, was well received, but there were still questions about whether DC's superhero universe would ever reach the heights of Marvel's.
Aquaman, which hit theaters in November 2018, proved that it could. The film grossed $1.14 billion worldwide, making it the most successful DC movie of all time--a record it still holds. Fans and critics loved the mix of outlandish undersea action, offbeat comedy, and political drama, and the sequel was greenlit in February 2019.
In June 2021, it was announced that the Aquaman sequel will be titled Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. The movie has now finished production ahead of its release next year--so here's everything we know about it so far...
What's the release date?
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom hits theaters on December 16, 2022. It will be available to stream on HBO Max 45 days later.
Who's the director?
The movie is directed by James Wan, who also helmed the first Aquaman. Wan's previous movies include Fast 7 as well as co-creating three of the biggest franchises in horror--Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring. He also made this year's insane horror movie Malignant.
Who's the writer?
David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick wrote the movie's screenplay. Johnson-McGoldrick has worked with Wan several times previously, on Aquaman, The Conjuring 2, and The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It. He also wrote the cult 2009 horror movie Orphan.
Who's coming back?
Numerous actors from the first Aquaman are returning for the sequel. Jason Momoa is back as Arthur Curry, aka Aquaman, the king of Atlantis. Amber Heard returns as the Xebel princess Mera, with veteran action star Dolph Lundgren as her father King Nereus. Patrick Wilson reprises his role as Arthur's villainous Atlantean half-brother Orm, with Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as ruthless mercenary Black Manta, and Temuera Morrison as Arthur's human father Thomas Curry. In addition, Randall Park will appear once more as Atlantis-obsessed marine biologist Dr. Stephen Shin.
A few new actors have been announced for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. So far, we know about:
- Vincent Regan (300) as Atlan, the first king of Atlantis. Atlan was played by Graham McTavish in the first Aquaman.
- Jani Zhao (The Sugar Captains) as Stingray, a new character created for the movie.
- Indya Moore (Escape Room: Tournament of Champions) as the mutated shark Karshon.
- Pilou Asbæk (Game of Thrones) in an so-far undisclosed role.
What's the story?
We're yet to see an official synopsis for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, so plot details are largely unknown. But while we don't know the story (apart from it presumably featuring a lost undersea kingdom), Wan has revealed a few hints about the film's tone. At DC Fandome in 2020, he told fans, "The second one is a little bit more serious, a little more relevant to the world we're living in today. That’s where it wants to go."
More recently, he told Total Film that the movie is "heavily inspired" by Mario Bava's classic 1965 sci-fi horror movie Planet of the Vampires. Bava is considered the godfather of Italian horror--it's hardly surprising Wan is a fan--and Planet of the Vampires is a weird, trippy movie that was also an influence on Alien.
Is there any footage or images?
The movie only wrapped production in London in early December, so unsurprisingly, we haven't seen any official pictures or footage yet. However, a behind-the-scenes video was released during DC Fandome in October. It included some cool concept art, showing some incredible-looking aquatic locations and weird-looking sea monsters. Momoa also took to social media to reveal the new costume he will be wearing in the film.
Will there be an Aquaman 3?
The third Aquaman movie is yet to be announced. But if Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is a hit--and given the massive success of its predecessor, it seems likely--then you can bet that Aquaman 3 will be with us at some point.
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