What Comic Book Movies Are Coming Out In 2022 – And Beyond!
After a year without superhero movies (in theaters, anyway), we finally got a slow return of them in 2021. It was good to have them back. They were all great, from Black Widow through The Suicide Squad and finishing the year off with Spider-Man: No Way Home. Even if Rotten Tomatoes got it wrong once or twice. However, if all goes to plan, we’ll get double the amount of comic book movies coming out in 2022. And we’ve got all different kinds. Superheroes who can turn into bats. Superheroes who dress like bats. And one or two batshit crazy comic book movies. Now, let’s sink our teeth into them. Pun intended.
Something was In the Way of The Batman Coming Out in 2021 (it was COVID)
(Image: Warner Bros)
Here’s how long we’ve been waiting for The Batman to release in theaters. I started writing for Comic Years in May of 2019. The news of Robert Pattinson’s Batman casting was my sixth article. June 2019. It will be two years and nine months when we’ll finally see Matt Reeve’s Se7en-styled The Batman. In fact, the more childish fans in geekdom have had enough time to throw a temper tantrum over the casting, get over it, and declare Pattinson the best Batman ever (those trailers were that good).
Speaking of the trailers, we’ve had four so far, but it wasn’t until December 27th, 2021, that we got a full trailer with a plot. The Riddler isn’t just out to kill people and drive Batman mad. He’s specifically after the Waynes. Meanwhile, we know Catwoman’s role – she’s teaming up with Bruce. “The cat and the bat,” she says in the trailer. We don’t quite know yet how Collin Ferrell’s Penguin fits into the plot. It almost feels like this could be two movies. Riddler and the Penguin are so menacing in the trailer that it’s hard to imagine Penguin as the secondary villain.
Warner Bros must have realized this, too, seeing how a Penguin-centric HBO show is coming after the comic book movie. Ferrell is also playing Penguin the way he was always meant to be. He’s not a freak in the sewers acting gross. He’s a well-respected, albeit corrupt, aristocrat in Gotham City. He has style, swagger, and sees his physical condition as a way to manipulate people further. Between him and Paul Dano’s Riddler, against Pattinson’s Batman and Zoe Kravitz’s Catwoman… it’s going to be a good movie, well worth the wait.
The Batman opens March 4th, 2022.
Morbius, the Most Delayed Comic Book Movie Coming Out in 2022
(Image: Sony Pictures)
Poor Morbius. Initially slated for July 10th, 2020, the superhero creature feature might be the last pre-COVID production that needed a release. However, the delay seemed to help Sony set up a better marketing plan. Either that, or we’re just so hungry for comic book movies going into 2022 that they all look fantastic. Morbius is also a considerable risk for Sony Pictures. While they want to create a shared universe of Spider-Man characters (that can pop in the MCU now), many of the characters are obscure. Venom was the only character that had strong brand recognition. Morbius has very little. He’s kind of in the same spot Guardians of the Galaxy was in. Sony is hoping that their touch of Spider-Man connection and overall franchise notoriety will draw in viewers.
But who is Morbius? Like Venom, he’s been both hero and villain. In recent years, he’s played more on the hero side. The recent short-lived series by Vita Ayala was fantastic. Sadly, it was also supposed to debut along with the movie. Between not having the movie bump and the COVID delays, the series ended prematurely. Hopefully, the living vampire’s comic book will live again in 2022. As for the movie, the new April 1st release date will probably help the movie. It’s far enough from the Spider-Man: No Way Home behemoth, but long before The Batman comes out. Without a ton of competition, Morbius should do okay for itself. The movie’s biggest villain, however, is the Omicron variant. Morbius was delayed again with the new surge in COVID cases, but hopefully, the most recent date sticks.
Morbius opens April 1st,2022…in theory.
The Most Anticipated Comic Book Movie Coming Out in 2022 – Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
(Image: Marvel Studios)
Ever since WandaVision, the Multiverse has been tearing apart. Not just the MCU multiverse, but every movie ever connected to Marvel properties. At the end of Loki, the “sacred timeline” started to fracture and branch out wildly. But it’s Spider-Man: No Way Home that will finally throw the Multiverse into chaos. We don’t yet know the full implications of Doctor Strange and Spider-Man’s actions. We don’t even know if the spell that Strange cast was for the MCU Peter Parker or every Peter Parker. Not to mention sending villains back fully cured. What does the Raimi universe look like if Green Goblin lives? Or the Amazing universe in Doctor Connors is cured before he tries to mutate New York?
The Multiverse of Madness looks to be the turning point of Marvel Phase Four. Ironically, though we saw his Spider-Man villains in No Way Home, Sam Raimi is directing the Doctor Strange sequel. There’s also the movie’s release date – the first weekend of May. Now, Marvel has had control of the summer kickoffs for most of the past two decades. From 2007’s Spider-Man 3 to 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, they owned the first weekend of May. That would have continued into 2020 if the pandemic didn’t happen. They often place their most significant movie of the year on that weekend, including every Avenger movie (though they decided to release Endgame one week early). Marvel made the first weekend of May into a spotlight on each phase’s most important comic book movies. Expect Doctor Strange to be one of Phase Four’s most important movies.
Also, we finally get to see Baron Mordo again! Does he still think there are too many wizards?
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness opens May 6th, 2022.
DC League of Super-Pets. No, Seriously, this is Coming Out in 2022
There are a few comic book things I never thought I’d say about the movies, but they keep coming regardless. Marvel isn’t seriously making Captain America, right? He’s way too corny of an idea. Several billion dollars later, and we’re all wishing we got just a little more Steve Rogers, somehow. They’ll never make Guardians of the Galaxy – nope, they’re on number three. Killer Croc making Suicide Squad an Oscar-winning movie? How did we even get to Killer Croc to begin with? King Shark? Starro? Pip the Troll? And now we’re getting the League of Super-Pets. No, It’s not a straight-to-video release. It’s a tentpole movie starring the Rock as Krypto, Kevin Hart as Bat-Hound, Jon Krasinski as Clark Kent, and more.
More as in Kate McKinnon, Kevin Conroy (wonder who he’ll be), Jameela Jamil, Vanessa Bayer, Natasha Lyonne, Ben Schwartz, and KEANU REEVES! The man who killed hundreds of people for killing his pet is going to be the voice of a superhero pet. How did we get here? Sure, we had to live through an attempted coup of the US government, and we’re still amid a global pandemic. But hey, at least this timeline has DC’s League of Super-Pets, right?
Well, it’s actually one of those “how hasn’t this been done yet?” The animated movie is perfect in the age of Pixar and superhero movies. Sure, we’ve had the Incredibles, Megamind, and Big Hero Six, but not Super-Pets? Who’s in charge of making sure awesome things happen at Warner Bros because they’re the real heroes.
DC League of Super-Pets opens May 20th, 2022.
Thor: Love and Thunder Could Change Thor – and the MCU – Forever
Image via Gage Skidmore
On July 8th, 2022, just a couple of months after Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, we’re getting another major MCU movie: Thor: Love and Thunder. Regardless of how much the new Asgardian god film impacts the MCU, it will still be a momentous feature. Firstly, we’re not just getting Natalie Portman’s return to the MCU after a nine-year hiatus; she’ll also wield Mjolnir and become Thor, just like she has in the comics. But, coming so soon after Multiverse of Madness, the next question is if this is the same Jane Foster as before?
Secondly, Thor will become the first MCU character to headline four movies and break the trilogy mold. He’ll hold this title for some time too. The next Captain America movie won’t be Steve Rogers, but Sam Wilson. And yes, with the obscene amount of money No Way Home has already pulled in, that second Tom Holland Spider-Man trilogy is almost certainly going to happen. However, it’s not going to be before 2025. Hell, by the time we get another Spider-Man movie, we might get Thor 5.
But don’t count on it. The main villain of Love and Thunder is Gor, the Godbutcher. We should be very worried about the Odinson. Sure, Taika Waititi’s Ragnarok was one of the zaniest Marvel movies yet, but it also had some of the most devastating moments. If you want to see how good Waititi is at mixing drama with absurdity, just watch his Oscar-winning JoJo Rabbit. Many comic book movies are coming out in 2022, but Love and Thunder might have the most emotional impact. Maybe bring a box of tissues to the theater.
Thor: Love and Thunder opens July 8th, 2022.
Can the Rock and Black Adam Save the DCEU?
(Image: Warner Bros)
While The Batman isn’t part of the DCEU, the other DC comic book movies coming out in 2022 are. The last films we got set in this shared universe were the outstanding The Suicide Squad and the infuriatingly bad Wonder Woman 1984. The Rock’s debut as the Shazam family supervillain has a lot of potential but more than enough working against it. Though he’s in the same family as Shazam, Black Adam is…not Billy Batson. Not by a mile (or roughly the size of the Rock’s bicep). He’s a dark, violent character. Quick to murder his enemies and even faster at making them suffer. Oh, and then there’s the fact that he’s a tyrannical dictator.
Bring your kids? Maybe not. This will likely be the most terrifying role that Dwayne Johnson ever takes on. However, Black Adam looks incredible based on the behind-the-scenes, concept art, and teaser scene we got during the last DC Fandome. Sadly, that doesn’t mean it will do well at the box office, pandemic or otherwise. The Suicide Squad is one of the best DC movies ever made, but good reviews, good word-of-mouth, and a phenomenal cast couldn’t beef up its numbers. Of course, that could also have something to do with the Warner Bros and HBO Max deal. How many people decided to stay home and watch Harley Quinn and an army of rats defeat Starro?
If Black Adam doesn’t have to compete with itself on July 29th, 2022, and the Thor: Love and Thunder crowd has quieted down enough, Black Adam could become the Rock’s highest-grossing film yet.
Black Adam opens July 29th, 2022.
Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Part One Will Introduce More Comic Book Spider-World Characters
(Image: Sony Pictures)
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is one of the best comic book movies ever made. However, there are a lot of Spider-heroes in the Multiverse. Over a year ago, Sony released twenty new Spider-Man logos, hinting at new characters, including Zombie Spider-Man, Captain Universe Spider-Man, and Punk Rock Spider-Man. We’re even Annie Parker, a Spider-Girl from another universe. Considering how Jake Johnson’s Spider-Man was having relationship problems with his world’s MJ, seeing that one version of him and MJ had a daughter will probably be hard to handle.
The first teaser trailer we got didn’t reveal much. We saw Spider-Gwen open a portal to get Miles Morales and then a multiversal throwdown between him and Spider-Man 2099. However, the most revealing part of the trailer was the title: Across the Spider-Verse Part 1. That only made fans even more excited. The promise of two more Spider-Verse movies! We’re going to get something epic, that’s for sure.
We also have no idea who will join the voice cast, but there are some obvious choices. First of all, if Captain Universe Spider-Man isn’t voiced by Keanu Reeves, then what are we even doing? Then we have the Punk Rock Spider-Man…Billy Joe Armstrong from Green Day. Or Pete Davidson. And yeah, it looks like we’re getting a Zombie Spider-Man. Come on. If Vin Diesel can make four (going on six) movies where all he says is “I am Groot,” he can give us some groaning, wailing, and garbled zombie-speak. Regardless, with so many new Spider-characters, everyone should find one they love. Oh! Spider-Ape! I’m thinking Bryan Cranston.
Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Part 1 opens October 7th, 2022.
The Comic Book Movie Coming Out in 2022 that had the Slowest Production Ever
(Image: Warner Bros)
Originally, we were supposed to get The Flash several years ago, not long after the abysmal failure of the Justice League. When that Frankenstein’s monster of a Joss Whedon film bombed at the box office, Warner Bros put a hard stop on nearly every DC movie. Many, such as Cyborg, were flat-out canceled. The Flash, however, went through years of turbulence to finally get to where it is today: less than a year to release. Despite getting a live-action Morbius in 2022, The Flash is the superhero movie coming out that has us most nervous. Sure, Warner Bros and DC did give us Birds of Prey and The Suicide Squad over the past couple of years. But they also proudly released Wonder Woman 1984.
However, there is a lot to look forward to with the Flash. What other superhero movie coming out in 2022 has a legendary character meet alternative versions of himself from the Multiverse? We haven’t seen that before, right? Oh…sorry, that was from a Comic Years in a universe where The Flash came out several years before Spider-Man: No Way Home. Even so, despite getting Toney Maguire to reprise his role from 2002’s Spider-Man, The Flash has an even better comeback. Michael Keaton is returning as Batman! And, from what we know, he’s going to meet Ben Affleck’s Batman (and possibly more). So, despite fan trepidation about the movie, there’s still something to be pumped up for.
The Flash opens November 4th, 2022.
We’re All Going to Cry When This Comic Book Movie Comes Out in 2022
(Image: Marvel Studios)
In 2020, we lost a king. Chadwick Boseman – T’Challa, the Black Panther and King of Wakanda. His passing devastated fans and the industry alike. Of course, the “show must go on,” and Ryan Coogler set to accomplish an impossible task: Make Black Panther without Black Panther. To honor Boseman, Marvel decided not to recast T’Challa. It was a controversial choice. The character has a legacy, so Even though Boseman wouldn’t be alive to do it himself, Marvel could pass the torch to the next T’Challa. Others agreed, feeling that someone else in the role would look wrong. Plus, how many actors would want to follow up Boseman’s iconic performance?
So, who will be the superhero we see in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever when it comes out later in 2022? That’s kind of the mystery. Shuri took up that mantle for a time in the comics, and fans loved her. Fans equally love Letitia Wright’s Shuri, but the actress has caused Disney some controversy and might leave with the franchise. But this raises a good point: we can have a new Black Panther while honoring Boseman’s T’Challa. And even if we don’t see Shuri in the Vibranium suit, several characters from that world could. The obvious choice is Okoye, Danai Gurira’s breakout character. As well, Nakia, Lupita Nyong’o’s character and T’Challah’s love interest. There are even rumors that Winston Duke’s M’baku could be the next Black Panther.
As long as it isn’t Martin Freeman’s Everett Ross. This actually happened for a couple of issues in Christopher Priest’s run, and as hilarious as it was, we don’t need it in the movie. However, regardless of who the next Black Panther is, it will still be great to return to Wakanda.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever opens November 11th, 2022.
Coming to the End of 2022, We Get the Lamest Superhero in Comics – But Awesome on the Big Screen
(Image: Warner Bros)
It’s not surprising that the first Aquaman movie did well. But a billion dollars? Yes, Jason Mamoa has enough charisma and charm to power a fleet of Black Manta’s Manta-subs (it’s not the best name). However, the first movie was fun but hokey — kind of on the same level as Venom, which came out the same year. Aquaman felt like a 1990s superhero action movie. It would fit better in the world of Batman Forever than it would Man of Steel.
This time around, Aquaman is following stiff competition. The first Black Panther won several Oscars and was robbed of nominated for Best Picture. Aquaman: The Lost Kingdom will face a very high bar if Wakanda Forever is half as good and meaningful as Black Panther. Even if it is an entirely different kind of movie. Also, coincidentally, it looks like we’re going to see two underwater kingdoms in superhero movies coming out in 2022. All signs point to Namor the Submariner, King of Atlantis, as the villain of Wakanda Forever.
In the comics, Namor, despite being so similar, has always been considered more interesting than Arthur Curry. However, there’s one subtle difference. In the comics, writers and artists long portrayed Aquaman as a sweet guy who happens to talk to fish. On the other hand, Namor is an asshole who happens to talk to fish. But Mamoa’s Aquaman is far less “sweet,” with some asshole qualities. He’s basically Namor.
The Lost Kingdom’s real advantage is scope. The first Aquaman movie looked like Lord of the Rings and Star Wars made a baby. Atlantis made Asgard look like a neglected outhouse. December is often the “epic fantasy movie” month, so Aquaman could hit that billion-dollar mark again.
Aquaman: The Lost Kingdom opens December 12th, 2022.
The Comic Book Movies Coming Out Beyond 2022
(Image via Disney+)
Many critics might hate it, but we’re still in a golden age of superhero films. And 2022 is just the beginning of the industry’s bounce back from the COVID shutdowns of 2020. Hopefully, Omicron doesn’t shut everything down again. In 2023, we’re getting:
The Marvels – February 17th, 2023
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 – May 5th, 2023
Shazam: Fury of the Gods – June 2nd, 2023
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania – July 28th, 2023
Untitled Marvel movie (Most likely Blade or Fantastic Four) – November 3rd, 2023
We’ll probably also see Blue Beetle in 2023, now that Warner Bros decided to release it in theaters instead of HBOMax.
Then we have 2023, and the slate of movies is absolutely, incredibly…something. We have no idea yet, just a bunch of dates that Marvel laid claim to. But we have some ideas:
Blade or Fantastic Four – February 16th, 2024
Captain America 4 – May 3rd, 2024
Deadpool 3 – July 26th, 2024
Shang-Chi 2 – November 8th, 2024
Marvel Studios – Eternals 2 – Even Further Beyond!
(Image: Marvel Studios, modified)
This, of course, doesn’t even get into the many announced movies with no dates, especially between Warner Bros and Sony. We have:
Amazons (Wonder Woman spin-off)
Gotham City Sirens
Green Lantern Corps
Kraven the Hunter
Wonder Woman 3
That’s enough movies to fill up 2023, 2024, 2025, and 2026. Sounds a little crazy, sure. But there are still other movies we can assume we’ll get. Spider-Man 4 with Tom Holland reprising his role for another trilogy. An Eternals sequel, probably in 2025. And we’ll have at least one more Batman with Robert Pattinson by Christmas 2025.
One thing is certain with all these superhero and comic book movies coming out in 2022 and beyond. It’s a damn good age to be a geek.
(Featured Image: Warner Bros)
Roman Colombo finished his MFA in 2010 and now teaches writing and graphic novel literature at various Philadelphia colleges. His first novel, Trading Saints for Sinners, was published in 2014. He's currently working on his next novel and hoping to find an agent soon.