For as much as we know about the new DCU under James Gunn, there’s a lot that is still very much a mystery. Gunn has unveiled a lot of his first chapter of the DCU, Gods and Monsters, and we know there will be some larger story going on. We might have assumed that the story was going to take us to the formation of the traditional Justice League, but James Gunn may have just teased us with the superhero team that is coming, and it’s not quite the same one.
James Gunn posted an image to his Instagram Story (via ScreenRant) which is an image not of the Justice League, but Justice League International, a slightly different variation on the classic team. The image that Gunn posted, from a 2022 comic book story, does include several characters that we know will be introduced in upcoming DC movies and TV series. This including Batman, Green Lantern Guy Gardner, and Booster Gold. Several heroes and villains are already part of the Superman: Legacy cast. Blue Beetle is also a member of the team, and we know that Xolo Mardiueña’s Blue Beetle is one of the few elements from the previous DC franchise that will continue forward in Gunn’s story.
Putting a team together using a group of lesser-known heroes may seem like an unusual decision, but it might make a lot of sense. The Justice League was formed in the previous franchise, and whatever you think are the reasons behind it, it certainly did not go well. Some fans are still angry that DC is being rebooted at all. Putting some distance between the new DCU and the classic Justice League isn’t necessarily a bad idea.
It’s certainly possible that James Gunn just shared the image because it happened to contain several characters that he’s introducing in the new DC franchise, and we know that there’s more to the DCU Chapter 1 that Gunn hasn’t yet announced. He could be hinting toward some future characters on screen that haven’t been officially confirmed yet, without specifically building toward a Justice League International team.
There may not even be specific plans for any big team-up movie in the future. While that feels inevitable, because we’ve seen it happen with the MCU and the previous DCEU, maybe Gunn has a different idea for ways to make his universe feel interconnected without making a specific team-up movie.
But a team-up does seem likely eventually, and based on the characters we know we’re going to see, perhaps Justice League International will be that team. A traditional Justice League appearing down the road certainly isn’t out of the question, and the longer we wait, the bigger a deal it will be when it finally happens. But that team will almost certainly need Wonder Woman and The Flash, and at this point, we have no idea when or how we might see those characters.