Flash Test Screening Leaks – New DC Movie Debuts For First Audiences
Part of the filmmaking process for studio movies are test screenings, where a mostly complete movie is shown to audiences for their reaction. Well, according to the rumor mill online, The Flash movie had a test screening and leaks from that DC film are filtering out into the world. The general consensus, it seems, is that audiences liked the movie, which makes big changes to the DCEU as we know it. Of course, some fans of Zack Snyder’s movies are upset because the rumor that The Flash movie erases the DCEU still persists. However, if the leaks from the test screening are true, The Flash movie does change things for the DC film universe, but everything exists and is canon. There are also reports of how Michael Keaton’s Batman fits into the film. Lastly, there is allegedly an ending that suggests this may not be Ben Affleck’s final performance as Batman.
Now, there is no way to verify the authenticity of these leaks, short of attending a test screening of The Flash movie ourselves. Still, with previous rumors, some common sense, and a sense of how Warner Bros. wants to handle things going forward, we can make some educated guesses. For those who wish to remain fully unspoiled about what happens, just know that the consensus seems to be that audiences enjoyed the movie. Keaton’s Batman is highlighted for his excellent performance in and out of the suit. Also, the movie will set up the future of the DCEU for the next few years. Still, there is 15 months from the time of this writing until the film’s release, so anything could change with reshoots.
The Flash Movie Test Screening Leaks – No Plot Points
Image via Warner Bros.
First, let’s talk about the general vibe we’re hearing about this new movie. While star Ezra Miller may be in a spot of trouble at the moment, their Barry Allen continues his run through DC fans’ hearts. The reports on their performance as the Flash appears to be mixed. Some rumor traffickers said that audiences were split amongst “best” Flash performance and “worst.” The thing that will excite fans of the Snyderverse, however, is that this movie apparently treats Zack Snyder’s Justice League as the canon version of the film in the universe. Characters in the movie make references to things that happened in that cut of the film that were totally absent from the theatrical version.
In the DC FanDome trailer for this movie, we see that Barry Allen goes to what appears to be his family home. In both versions of Justice League, Henry Allen is incarcerated for the murder of Barry’s mother. Taking from the comic series Flashpoint, the trailer implies that Barry goes to save his mom and multiversal hell breaks loose.
Still, the general consensus seems to be that this movie is fun, not overly dark, and it establishes the near future of the DCEU. There are characters from previous films who return from across the Snyderverse and current DCEU. New characters are introduced, such as Sasha Calle’s Supergirl, who are expected to appear in a number of future projects. Lastly – though some may count this as a spoiler – because this is a DC multiverse film, nothing is “erased.” We’ll explain more as we get to the plot-specific leaks from The Flash movie test screening.
Warning – potential spoilers for The Flash movie from test screening leaks ahead. Carry on at your own risk.
The Flash Movie Test Screening Leaks – Plot Points
Image via Warner Bros.
Once more for the cheap data plans: all of these details are rumors and may or may not be totally fiction. Still, since this is a story about a guy who runs so fast, he can break time, we’ll share what we know and you decide for yourself. The Flash movie plot leaks are not all from the test screening, some have been circulating for awhile now. The most recent is that Sasha Calle’s Supergirl will “replace” Henry Cavill’s Superman. This feels like a half-truth, and the new info we have supports that theory.
The rumor suggests that in this timeline, Kal-El was killed by Zod in the events depicted in the opening of Man of Steel. Yet, his cousin, Kara Zor-El escapes to Earth, becoming the Kryptonian hero of Earth. This character will be Warner Bros. go-to Kryptonian hero in the shared universe in the near future. This makes sense, especially since Calle’s per-movie rate is certainly cheaper than Cavill’s. However, the Snyderverse as we know it becomes a corner of the multiverse that can be tapped into whenever the studio wants. Similarly, Ben Affleck’s Batman does not die in the movie, and the ending tag of the film seems to suggest he (and others) will return for a Crisis On Infinite Earths movie event. Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, and Zachary Levi also reportedly appear as their DCEU characters. Also, Michael Shannon and Antje Traue return as Zod and Faora.
The villain of the film is played by Ezra Miller, this time as a Barry Allen who breaks bad. We saw two Barrys in the trailer, so we know there are multiple versions of this character. (Also, Grant Gustin’s Flash is rumored to appear, though may not have been in the test screening.)
How Barry Allen’s Adventures Will Change the DCEU Going Forward (Maybe)
Image via Warner Bros.
So, what does this all mean for the future of DC Films at Warner Bros.? If The Flash movie plot leaks from the test screening are true, it aligns with what we’ve speculated is the case all along. This film silos the Snyderverse-that-was into its own “Earth,” that can appear in future projects. We also know that WB is find with standalone films like The Batman or the Superman film JJ Abrams is reportedly working on with Ta-Nehisi Coates. Effectively, they are going to have their shared universe, but it won’t determine the continuity for every DC Comics movie. For our money, that feels like the best of both worlds (literally, in a sense).
Also, we wouldn’t write off Henry Cavill coming back as Superman just yet. The actor still wants to play the role, and there are perennial rumors that he’s in talks to return. We know that Dwayne Johnson wants his Black Adam to face off against Cavill’s Superman. He also may be in The Flash movie, but to prevent leaks his presence was cut from the test screening. Just like with Ben Affleck, the state of the DCEU after The Flash seems to leave the door open for a return but nothing definitive. Also, after the unmitigated success of the Arrowverse’s Crisis On Infinite Earths event, DC Films may want to do their own Avengers: Endgame or Spider-Man: No Way Home thing with multiple versions of different characters in a series of films. With Keaton back in the bat-suit, we comic fans should remember that anything is possible.
Image via Warner Bros.
Ultimately, the future of live-action DC Comics adaptations is bright. With the series on TV, the HBO Max originals, and the movie universe(s), there are plenty of opportunities for fans to see their favorite characters and actors again and again.
The Flash releases on July 23, 2023.
What do you think? Do you believe the test screening leaks about The Flash movie? Does the idea that the Snyderverse is not erased but just put off to the side make you happy or angry? Share your thoughts, reactions, and theories about the future of DC Films in the comments below.
h/t to DCEU Leaks subreddit
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book of superhero short stories, Tales of Adventure & Fantasy: Book One is available as an ebook or paperback from Amazon.