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SYFY WIRE Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Aquaman sequel will be 'more serious' and 'relevant,' says director James Wan at DC FanDome

By Jacob Oller
Orm Aquaman Patrick Wilson

Aquaman sequel news has been scant recently, though writer David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick (returning from the original) has given out morsels of intel about which comics it might pull from. Still, fans were in luck at the franchise's DC FanDome panel, where returning director James Wan and King Orm himself, Patrick Wilson, went deep into the undersea superhero franchise — and touched on what's coming next for the Atlantean king.

Wilson and Wan talked Aquaman memories, figuring out that they'd first touched on the idea of Wilson joining the movie on the set of The Conjuring 2 — though whether it was a conversation or a text is up in the air.

But as soon as Wan knew he was taking the job, he also knew he wanted Wilson to go up against Jason Momoa. "You guys are kinda different in a lot of ways. It was the right thing to do," the director explained at the panel, emphasizing how Momoa's character was an outsider to Atlantis.

As talk turned to the sequel, Wilson said he loves the "weirdness" of filming in this pseudo-underwater, FX-heavy format because it's like black-box theater. "This'll be interesting the next time through," Wilson said of working fight scenes in a harness.

"I'm excited to continue the journeys of our heroes and our antiheroes," Wan said with a laugh. "The second one is a little bit more serious. A little bit more relevant to the world we're living in today."

Before the sequel comes out, there's also the matter of The TrenchAquaman's horror-focused spin-off that reportedly takes place between the films of the main series. Then again, Wan knows a thing or two about doing horror.

In a video released earlier this week, Wan doubled down on how Aquaman 2 would still have some scary stuff. "Just like the first movie had a touch of my horror sensibility in it — in regards to the Trench sequence — I would say there will be a little bit of that in this next one," Wan said. "I think it's something that's a big part of who I am and it just naturally comes out in these kind of films. And especially Aquaman, where the story takes place in these underwater worlds, that can very scary. Naturally, my love for the horror genre just means that I latch myself to these scenes and try to give them a little bit more of my scary sauce on them."

Aquaman 2 is currently set for Dec. 16, 2022.

Click here for more of SYFY WIRE’s coverage of DC FanDome.