With former DC Film president Walter Hamada officially out of the company, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed that filmmaker James Gunn and producer Peter Safran have been named to lead DC’s film, TV, and animation projects as co-chairs and co-CEOs of DC Studios, which was formerly DC Films.
The succession of Gunn and Safran ends a month-long search for the recently-merged Warner Bros. Discovery boss David Zaslav, who had been looking for a “Kevin Feige” type figure to run that part of the studio. Gunn commented on his new position, but simply tweeting his excitement for things to come, albeit brief.
Gunn and Safran will now helm all of the development and execution of a long-term plan for many of the characters and properties of DC Comics. In addition to those responsibilities, Gunn and Safran will develop, direct, and produce their own projects.
Gunn will focus on the creative side, while Safran will handle the business and production side. They also will report directly to Zaslav and work closely with new Warners film bosses Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdy.
“DC has among the most entertaining, powerful, and iconic characters in the world and I am thrilled to have the singular and complementary talents of James and Peter joining our world-class team and overseeing the creative direction of the storied DC Universe,” said Zaslav in a statement (via THR), explaining why they felt like the right choice. “Their decades of experience in filmmaking, close ties to the creative community, and proven track record thrilling superhero fans around the globe make them uniquely qualified to develop a long-term strategy across film, TV, and animation, and take this iconic franchise to the next level of creative storytelling.”
Gunn helmed both The Suicide Squad soft reboot and brought his Peacmaker spin-off series to HBO Max, and both were met with critical acclaim and solid ratings. Safran has been able to build upon The Conjuring Universe and produce DC films such as Aquaman, Shazam! (and their upcoming sequels), The Suicide Squad, and many others under his banner and through his first-look deal with Warner Bros.
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