DC‘s developing Static Shock movie could very well end up an HBO Max exclusive film, according to a new report. The character of Virgil Hawkins was first created with Milestone Comics, which were published and distributed by DC. After being exposed to a gaseous radioactive chemical, Virgil develops powers like electromagnetic manipulation. As one of Milestone‘s biggest characters, fans have long been interested in seeing Virgil get his own live-action movie. It was announced at DC FanDome in August that a Static Shock movie is finally in development, and Michael B. Jordan boarded as a producer in October.
Little is known about Static Shock at this point, as neither a director nor a star has been named. It also remains to be seen when fans can expect to see it arrive, or if it will even be included within the connected universe of the DCEU. Fans were pleased to hear Jordan will serve as a producer, particularly since Jordan hinted at the creation of a universe of Black superheroes like Virgil. As it stands right now, Static Shock appears to be in active development, but DC and Warner Bros. might be a bit wary about its prospects, based on a new report.
While talking to the NYT, DC‘s president of films Walter Hamada unveiled the general release plan for future DC films. While the most expensive DC movies are said to remain theatrical releases, Hamada stated two DC movies a year could be released directly to HBO Max. These would be centered on “riskier characters,” with Static Shock being listed as a possibility. Batgirl was another contender.
Should this come to pass, it’s likely the move will be met with some very mixed responses. On one hand, it’s hard to deny that releasing movies on streaming services like HBO Max make them far more accessible to all viewers, which could allow for a broader audience. On the other, fans might prefer to see Static Shock on the big screen. Many have waited a long time for this movie to be made, and to deny it a theatrical release preemptively could alienate viewers who believe it deserves time in theaters.
For all his enthusiasm about the project, Jordan could very well try to advocate for Static Shock to receive a theatrical release. It’s still very early in the development process, so anything could happen with Static Shock. Plans may very well change, and only time will tell if Virgil will hit the big screen, or remain a streaming hero. Warner Bros. is definitely going all in on HBO Max, as seen through their controversial 2021 plan. Going forward, that mindset just might affect the future of DC movies.