More than two years after the project was first announced, DC's Blue Beetle movie has landed a director. The Wrap reports that Angel Manuel Soto, director of the acclaimed 2020 indie hit Charm City Kings, has been tapped to helm the film, which will be the first on the DC Films roster to star a Latino superhero.
A Blue Beetle film was first floated back in the fall of 2018, when The Wrap reported that Scarface remake and Miss Bala screenwriter Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer was working on a script for the project which will focus on Jaime Reyes, the third character to carry the Blue Beetle name and powers. Now, with Soto on board as director, the project is moving forward once again.
“It is an honor to direct Blue Beetle, the first Latino superhero film for DC,” Soto told The Wrap. “I want to sincerely thank everyone at Warner Bros. and DC for trusting me to bring Jaime Reyes to life. I can’t wait to make history together.”
The superhero known as Blue Beetle dates all the way back to the now-defunct Fox Comics in the late 1930s, but the character has done a fair bit of shuffling around to publishers over the decades. By the 1980s Ted Kord, the second Blue Beetle, had migrated from Charlton Comics (who landed the rights after Fox went under) to DC Comics, where he and other Charlton mainstays joined the DC Universe. Kord was the Blue Beetle for years, becoming a beloved DC Comics figure thanks to hit titles like Justice League International, before he was killed off in the events leading up to DC's Infinite Crisis event in 2005.
Enter Jaime Reyes. Created by Keith Giffen, John Rogers, and Cully Hamner, Reyes is a teenager from El Paso who stumbles upon the Blue Beetle Scarab (the object that imbues the holder with the blue super-suit and resulting powers) after various struggles caused it to launch across the world and land in his hometown (long story). Reyes' introduction also led to a major re-evaluation of the Blue Beetle mythos, transforming the scarab itself from a piece of apparently ancient magic to an alien artifact with cosmic implications.
Jaime Reyes has since gone on to become a fan favorite in his own right, leading an ongoing series and appearing in both live-action (in Smallville, plus some easter egg-y Arrowverse references) and animated television (shows like Young Justice and Batman: The Brave and the Bold).
Now, with Soto and Dunnet-Alcocer guiding him, he'll be breaking new ground on the big screen at a time when DC Films is seeing more and more success through filmmaker-driven, standalone superhero adventures. There's no word yet on when we might see Blue Beetle, but Soto's hiring means we should probably start dreamcasting Jaime Reyes.