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What 'Aquaman' Means for the Future of DC's Cinematic Universe

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Can “Aquaman” save the DC Universe?

Every time Warner Bros. releases a new Justice League adventure, it’s become de rigueur to ask what the film’s box office results mean for the studio’s on-going attempts to fashion together a Marvel alternative. It may be frustrating for the powers that be at DC, but it’s a valid question to raise given the comic book brand’s inconsistent track record. “Wonder Woman” was a promising step in the right direction as Patty Jenkins’ take on the Amazonian warrior became the rare DC entry to score critical acclaim and robust ticket sales to match. This time, it was up to “Aquaman” director James Wan to prove Princess Diana was no fluke.

Audiences, for the most part, seem receptive to Jason Momoa’s sinewy leader. Bolstered by decent reviews, the superhero adventure topped the box office in North America, racking up $72 million over its first three days, including previews. It’s not an overwhelmingly impressive Stateside start compared to his Spandexed cohort “Wonder Woman,” which racked up $103 million during its first weekend. Even critically excoriated entries such as “Justice League” ($93 million) and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” ($166 million) were able to pull off better debuts.


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Still, “Aquaman’s” $72 million bow comes with a few of caveats. The Atlantean king........

© Variety