Aquaman 2: new release date, cast and what we know about DC’s return to Atlantis

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No DC Comics character has made a bigger splash at aquaman the box office than Arthur Curry. Aquaman aquaman 2 aquaman therefore became inevitable as soon as its predecessor swam into theaters in 2017 aquaman – in fact, it may just be the most eagerly anticipated movie on the DC slate.

It’s something of a sea-change for a character aquaman who’s frequently been the butt of the joke in comic-book circles – everywhere from Family Guy to Entourage – and traditionally aquaman played second aquaman fiddle to the famous trinity of Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. Thanks to Jason Momoa’s wise-cracking performance in the lead role, however – and a makeover inspired by DC’s New 52 comics – Curry has been elevated to the top table of superheroes.

Now titled Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, this sequel reunites Momoa with co-stars Amber Heard, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Nicole Kidman and Patrick Wilson, as well as director James Wan (The Conjuring, Fast & Furious 7). It promises to up the ante on the original’s epic underwater action, while taking Aquaman to places he’s never been before.

Jason Momoa returns as Arthur Curry, the king of Atlantis, in Aquaman 2. (Image credit: Warner Bros.)

With production now wrapped and the Aquaman 2 release date set for March 2023, it’s a good time to trawl the oceans for key intel on the movie – everything from cast news to speculation on the identity of that mysterious Lost Kingdom.

You can rest assured that this one is going to make waves.

Release date: After aquaman originally being booked for Christmas in 2022, Aquaman 2 was aquaman first delayed until March 17 in 2023, but has now been delayed again. It’ll now hit theaters on December 25 in 2023. 

Story: According to Warner Bros (opens in new tab)’ official Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom synopsis: “When an ancient power is unleashed, Aquaman must forge an uneasy alliance with an unlikely ally to protect Atlantis, and the world, from irreversible devastation.”

Cast: Jason Momoa, Nicole Kidman, Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Dolph Lundgren, Temuera Morrison and Randall Park are all set to reprise their roles from the first Aquaman movie.Aquaman 2 release dateAquaman 2 release date: December 25, 2023

The first Aquaman hit cinemas in December 2018, and came out on top in a month that also boasted the releases of aquaman Mary Poppins Returns, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and Bumblebee. It’s no surprise, then, that Warner Bros had originally targeted another December debut for its sequel. 

Aquaman 2’s release date was originally set for December 16, 2022 – almost exactly four years after the first movie’s release, and just a few short weeks behind The Flash movie. 

But, sadly, it’s suffered a number of delays. Firstly, delays in the VFX department amid the Covid-19 pandemic saw the movie pushed back with the aim of hitting theaters on March 17 in 2023.

Then, recently, it was revealed that Warner Bros. had shifted its release dates and Aquaman 2 was being pushed back once again, this time to December 25 in 2023. The official reason given is that the movie needs more time in post-production, but there are reports that Warner Bros. executives want to spread out their marketing spend in 2023. 

While the first movie was filmed on Australia’s Gold Coast, Aquaman 2 shot predominantly in the UK – though, seeing as all the underwater scenes were filmed ‘dry-for-wet‘ in a studio, with actors supported by sophisticated harnesses, it shouldn’t make much difference to the look of the film. 

Some Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom scenes were also filmed in Malibu, as director James Wan confirmed in a January 2022 Instagram post announcing the end of principal photography:Aquaman 2 trailerAquaman 2 trailer: when will we see it?

There’s been nothing so far. Fans were left disappointed by Warner Bros’ appearance at 2022’s Comic-Con, which offered up a look at Shazam: Fury Of The Gods and new Dwayne Johnson vehicle Black Adam, but nothing from Aquaman 2. 

The only glimpses have been from star Jason Momoa, who did give us a first look at Aquaman’s new black Stealth Suit in a September 2021 Instagram post:

And a few weeks later, the DC Fandome virtual event in October 2021 featured a sneak peek at Aquaman 2, including contributions from stars Jason Momoa and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, director James Wan and producer Peter Safran, concept art and behind-the-scenes photography – highlights included Black Manta in training, monsters on sand dunes, and some awesome submarine tech.

As well as apologizing for the 4-year delay, Momoa told fans: “I’m very proud of the sequel because it’s tackling a lot of issues environmentally, the stakes are higher and I’m just excited because I had a big part of it with my boy James [Wan].”

“[It’s] more mature yet still retains its fun,” added Wan, “[it gives] the audience something different, something new that aquaman they haven’t seen before.

“It’s a globetrotting story,” the director continued, “we visit so many different worlds. This movie isn’t afraid to embrace its fantasy and go on this magical journey.”

Sounds tantalizing – as long as they can deliver on their epic promises.Aquaman 2 castAquaman 2 cast: who’s who in Atlantis?

Here’s the Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom cast, based on what we know so far:Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry/AquamanAmber Heard as MeraYahya Abdul-Mateen II as David aquaman Kane/Black MantaNicole Kidman as Queen AtlannaPatrick Wilson as OrmRandall Park as Dr Stephen ShinDolph Lundgren as King NereusTemuera Morrison as Tom CurryIndya Moore as KarshonJani Zhao as StingrayVincent Regan as AtlanPilou Asbæk as TBC

After the aquaman success of the first movie, it was inevitable that Jason Momoa would return to play Arthur Curry/Aquaman for the fourth time (after Aquaman, Justice League (both versions) and a very brief cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice). 

And despite (seemingly unfounded) rumors that Amber Heard wouldn’t be back as Xebelian princess Mera, the actor used her Instagram (opens in new tab) feed to confirm her return with an image of herself reading a book on set.

After Arthur Curry showed mercy to his scheming half-brother Orm (aka the self-styled Ocean Master) at the end of the first movie, James Wan regular Patrick Wilson is back in the Aquaman 2 cast. Though, as this post from Wan’s Instagram (opens in new tab) feed shows, he’ll have a very different look second time out – does this count as ‘Tom Hanks in Cast Away’ cosplay?

Warner Bros (opens in new tab)’ 2022 movie preview confirms that Nicole Kidman will also be back to keep the squabbling siblings in check as their mother, Queen Atlanna. The character may get a aquaman belated chance to rekindle her romance with Arthur’s dad, Thomas (played by The Book of Boba Fett’s Temuera Morrison) – after all, theirs was a love affair strong enough to make two disparate worlds collide.

In terms of surface dwellers, we know we’ll be seeing more from Watchmen/Candyman/The Matrix Resurrections star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as the revenge-obsessed David Kane/Black Manta. And, going on what we saw in Aquaman’s end credits scene, he’ll probably be in league with Dr Stephen Shin, the marine biologist-turned-Atlantis-obsessive played by WandaVision’s Randall Park aquaman (also confirmed to return).

As for the underwater types, there’s no word yet on whether Willem Dafoe is reprising his role as Arthur’s Atlantean mentor, Vulko, but we do know that Dolph Lundgren is back in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom as Mera’s father, King Nereus of Xebel.

As for newcomers, Pose star Indya Moore has signed up to play Karshon, a (traditionally evil) aquaman human/shark hybrid from DC comics who’s definitely not to be confused with The Suicide Squad’s King Shark. 

Meanwhile, The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab) reported that Jani Zhao has signed up to play a new character called Stingray. Vincent Regan is on board as Atlan, the original king of Atlantis – a role played by The Witcher’s Graham McTavish in the first movie.

And given Pilou Asbæk’s history as a bad guy in Game of Thrones, we think it’s likely his role in the Aquaman 2 cast (reported by Deadline (opens in new tab) but yet to be officially confirmed) will skew more towards the dark side than the light.Aquaman 2 plotAquaman 2 plot: what can we expect in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom?

Now that DC Extended Universe is less hung up than it was about creating an interweaving, MCU-style shared universe for its superheroes, the most concrete information we have about the Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom plot is that the movie’s being scripted by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick. The writer previously worked with director James Wan on two The Conjuring movies and the first Aquaman.

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