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DC’s $200 Million Cancelled Lobo Movie Would Have Been WILD (VIDEO)

DC's $200 Million Cancelled Lobo Movie Would Have Been WILD

In this FandomWire Video Essay, we explore DC’s $200 million cancelled Lobo movie that would have been wild.

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The Cancelled Lobo Movie

The Cancelled Lobo Movie

With the transition of leadership at both Warner Bros. Discovery and DC, the future of the DC Extended Universe is as uncertain as ever. After just being announced to return in Black Adam, Henry Cavill is again out as Superman. And Patty Jenkins’s planned Wonder Woman 3, a proposed third entry in the franchise, which has been one of the DCEU’s more lucrative, is no longer happening. With James Gunn and Peter Safran at the helm, no one really knows what the future of the DCEU will look like.

It seems that Gunn and Safran want the DCEU to completely change, with a reinvention of the universe balancing well-known and lesser-known characters. For example, they are looking to revisit a much younger version of the Superman character, and they hope to continue some of their fan-favorite properties like Peacemaker. However, in their quest to expand to new properties, who is likely to be a target?

One character that fans have been clamoring to see adapted for the screen for years is Lobo. Once described by Marvel creator Stan Lee as his favorite of all of DC’s characters, Lobo is an intergalactic bounty hunter from the alien race called the Czarnians. Because he’s one of the most popular DC characters in the ’90s, it’s honestly pretty shocking that DC hasn’t found a way to give him a film yet — or at least incorporate him into one of their other films.

Lobo’s powers are extensive, with his origins making him one of the most powerful beings in the DC comics canon. Generally, Lobo is depicted as having superhuman durability, akin to Luke Cage from the Marvel universe, and nearly matching Superman. And when he is injured, he has powerful regenerative abilities which allow him to heal himself, even in one instance, regenerating out of a pool of his blood.

There is one obvious comparison for the character in terms of tone: Marvel’s Deadpool. Both characters are relentlessly violent mercenaries willing to stop at nothing to achieve their goals, are virtually indestructible, and love to wisecrack. However, Lobo has had a long and complex publication history.

When Lobo was first introduced in the 1980s, it was as a villain to counter Superman. The character made a few appearances and then was almost abandoned until being revived with his own comic line in the 1990s. The revival was meant to parody the darker trends of comics at the time, but it was so well-embraced by fans that they began to take him seriously.

Throughout his comic book run, Lobo has gone on a series of adventures, some of which are much more outlandish than others. For example, in one run, he magically transforms into a teenager and becomes a member of Young Justice. However, the many diverse uses of the character leave plenty of potential for an adaptation of the character.

Part of why fans love Lobo so much is that it is one of the darkest DC properties, and yet there is an undeniable sense of humor about the character. It creates a cynical but weirdly charming result that few DC films have. And given that the DCEU films have been criticized for being too straight-faced, Lobo could be an excellent tongue-in-cheek addition to the canon.

And for those worried about Lobo’s similarities to other characters that have already been adapted to the screen before — from both DC and Marvel — there are plenty of unique quirks about the character. Lobo is, without a doubt, one of the most eclectic and zany DC characters there is, so any bizarre situation the writers could think up would fit.

We’ve already seen Lobo in other media a few times. He’s appeared in multiple animated series and various video games tied to the DC Universe. He even appeared in live action in the SyFy show Krypton, and that show’s creators were considering creating a spin-off series for the Main Man, only to abandon it when the main show was canceled.

There have been several attempts in the past to bring Lobo to the big screen, with actors Will Smith and Dwayne Johnson and directors Guy Ritchie and Brad Peyton attached at various stages of development. Of course, if the Lobo film were to be pursued again, Smith and Johnson would likely be off the table, as they have since gone on to star in DC films of their own — Suicide Squad and Black Adam.

The most recent incarnation of the Lobo movie was in 2018 when director Michael Bay was attached to the project. That’s right, the mastermind behind Transformers and Bad Boys was going to make a movie about the galaxy’s most dangerous bounty hunter, and it would have been absolutely glorious. However, the film never came to fruition because the script was so ambitious that it would have required a budget of $200 million or more.

After the success of the hard-R-rated Deadpool film, DC began to explore their options for edgier superhero content, and an anti-hero movie about a bounty hunter killing interplanetary outlaws fit the bill. However, it makes sense that they couldn’t justify spending $200 million on a film that, for all intents and purposes, sounds like a superhero version of True Grit.

However, the issue may be that they were trying to take the wrong direction for the character. There are a lot of different approaches that the character could take, thanks to the character’s evolution in the comics. With recent trends in comic book movies, the writers seemed keen to adapt some of the more satirical runs of the character, but there is also plenty of potential in his more straightforward, darker side.

Indeed, for Lobo, nothing is really off-bounds. The Main Man abides by a strict code of ethics that he set for himself, but apart from that, he will go to any length to accomplish his goals. He never breaks a contract, even murdering his fourth-grade teacher and Santa Claus. Known for his over-the-top nature, a film starring this character would be unlike anything we have seen in the DCEU yet.

One of the elements of Lobo’s world that had caused the budget to balloon so remarkably was his space dolphins. The cost of creating these mammalian companions via CGI would be extensive. Yet, they are one of the most iconic parts of Lobo’s storylines — after all, who doesn’t love the idea of an adorable space dolphin?

In the comics, Lobo has proven so protective of the space dolphins that he would set out on brutal quests for revenge against anyone who caused them harm. This alone would make for an absolutely gnarly Lobo picture. Imagine a John Wick-style action movie where Lobo sets out on a quest across the universe, murdering and getting revenge on the intergalactic baddies that hurt his precious dolphins. It would be awesome, wouldn’t it?

Additionally, Lobo’s job frequently causes him to run in with characters from other DC properties. Whether as a contract to fulfill or someone to get in his way, Lobo has encountered several prominent superheroes or villains throughout his comic book history. In terms of the films, this would have given him virtually limitless crossover and cameo potential to bring other fan-favorite characters into the fold.

One of Lobo’s main adversaries is none other than Superman himself, who has served as both one of Lobo’s targets and tried to foil him from carrying out his missions. Although we now know that Cavill will not return to the role, a confrontation between Lobo and the new Superman could be a great way to introduce Lobo to the universe before he spins off and gets his own storyline.

So who could play Lobo? One actor, in particular, has voiced their eagerness to play the Main Man: Dave Bautista. Given Bautista’s history of working with Gunn on Guardians of the Galaxy, this possibility isn’t too much of a stretch — especially since he was, at one point, going to star in Gunn’s own The Suicide Squad. And Bautista’s talents are a perfect match to bring the Czarnian bounty hunter to life, as he has both the physicality and the sense of humor to nail the character.

What do you think? Do you want to see Michael Bay’s version of Lobo or a different one entirely? And would you want to see Dave Bautista in the role, or do you have a better person in mind? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to like and subscribe. Until next time, and as always, thanks for watching!

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Written by Reilly Johnson

Reilly Johnson is a businessman, journalist, and a staple in the online entertainment community contributing to some of the largest entertainment pages in the world. Currently, Reilly is the President of FandomWire, a subsidiary of Johnson Concepts.