Aquaman premiered again in 2018, turning into an prompt box-office success. The Jason Momoa-led movie grossed greater than $1 billion worldwide. In truth, no different DCEU movie has grossed greater than $1 billion, giving Aquaman a really particular place on the charts. Given the movie’s large success, it got here as no shock to anybody to have a sequel for the film introduced. Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom was formally confirmed again in 2021, and followers, expectedly, have been fairly excited in regards to the launch of the sequel.
The manufacturing of the movie was not with out controversy, owing to the tensions between Mera actress Amber Heard and Johnny Depp. Embroiled in a tense authorized battle, there have been a number of doubts relating to whether or not Heard would return to her function as Mera amidst the calls of many for an additional actress to interchange Heard in her function.
However, the not too long ago launched trailer for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom has established that Heard can be making a return alongside Jason Momoa because the lead Arthur Curry, Temuera Morrison as Tom Curry, Patrick Wilson as Orm, Nicole Kidman as Atlanna and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Manta. Notably absent from the lineup is Willem Dafoe, who performed the character Nuidis Vulko within the first Aquaman movie.
Who Is William Dafoe?
Warner Bros. Pictures
Dafoe performed the pivotal function of Nuidis Vulko within the 2018 Aquaman. As the mentor of Arthur Curry, AKA Aquaman, and the character whom Atlanna, Arthur’s mom, assigned to coach Arthur in her absence, Vulko guided and influenced how Arthur navigated the ocean realm and the battle together with his half-brother, King Orm.
Thanks to Dafoe’s Vulko, Arthur learns his historical past and heritage, together with the truth that he’s Queen Atlanna’s firstborn son and, due to this fact, the rightful inheritor to the Atlantis throne. However, Arthur rejects his rightful place, leaving Orm because the ruler of Atlantis, which does change on the conclusion of the movie. With Vulko by his aspect, Arthur embarks on his mission to stop a battle from occurring between the ocean and land worlds.
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The character performed by Dafoe in Aquaman was maybe a welcome change for viewers. Many are accustomed to seeing Dafoe tackle the function of villains, with the actor extensively identified for his portrayal of Green Goblin in Marvel’s Spider-Man. Accustomed to Dafoe’s villainous roles, some Aquaman viewers had been even ready for the opposite shoe to drop. Reading into the character, perhaps greater than they need to have, many had been in search of a hidden motive behind Vulko’s seemingly benevolent mission of creating Arthur the King of Atlantis. However, the shoe does not drop, and the movie concludes with Dafoe’s Vulko as one of many good guys.
Why Isn’t Dafoe Returning for Aquaman 2?
Warner Bros. Pictures
With Vulko’s character absent from the newly launched trailer for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, followers had been left questioning if Arthur’s mentor can be making a return for the sequel.
Clearing doubts, director James Wan confirmed to Entertainment Weekly that Willem Dafoe wouldn’t be part of the most recent movie. The director, who additionally headed the preliminary Aquaman movie, mentioned that scheduling variations that might not be prevented prevented Dafoe from returning to Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. However, Wan has not let the actor’s absence deter him, as an alternative seeing a brand new alternative inside the problem.
“Willem shouldn’t be on this one, no. Part of the rationale was as a result of his schedule didn’t work out for us. But what that allowed me to do was develop on Atlanna’s function. Atlanna on this one finally turns into Arthur’s advisor. Because Arthur’s not from this world, she helps him higher perceive the world and the politics of how issues work.”
With Momoa’s Arthur Curry now the King of Atlantis, a husband and father, a brand new journey awaits him within the sequel. Called to defend his kingdom in opposition to any power that threatens it, Arthur, as per Wan, shall be guided by his mom, Atlanna, as an alternative of Vulko on his new journey. The trailer launched for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom reveals Arthur’s alliance together with his brother, whom he defeated and later imprisoned. The villain apparently turns hero, and the 2 brothers be part of forces to defeat the onslaught by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II’s Black Manta. Despite being solely a minor villain within the first movie, the storyline of the trailer depicts Black Manta as having developed into a robust foe.
What Can We Expect from Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom?
Warner Bros. Pictures
James Wan has confirmed what we are able to count on to see from the brand new Aquaman movie. As per the director, though the primary movie centered on a mission to cease a battle alongside a budding romance between Arthur and Mera, the second movie shall be centered on the brothers.
Perhaps this determination comes as a clever alternative given the controversy that Mera actress Amber Heard has attracted over her authorized battle together with her ex-husband, Johnny Depp. Expressing his ideas on the narrative of the sequel, Wan mentioned, “I all the time pitched this to everybody from the get-go. The first Aquaman was Arthur and Mera’s journey. The second film was all the time going to be Arthur and Orm.” He went on so as to add, “So, the primary was a romance action-adventure film, the second is a bromance action-adventure film.”
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Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom’s trailer reveals that Wan has caught to his phrase. The barely 3-minute glimpse into the movie exhibits Arthur and Orm unite, with pleasant banter and jibes between them, totally on the a part of Arthur. Black Manta and his Black Trident grow to be Arthur’s and Orm’s main mission, with the battle between the 2 brothers seemingly on the again burner. Together with the plot depicted within the movie, Vulko’s absence is also a doable avenue for the movie to discover. A storyline that ties collectively Black Manta and Vulko, maybe the place the previous kills the latter in revenge in opposition to Aquaman, appears a chance.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is ready to make its theatrical launch on December 20, 2023.