Doug Liman recently spoke about how excited he was to direct Warner Bros. exploration of the magic underbelly of the DC Cinematic Universe with Justice League Dark.
Then the director exited the project about a week later.
Liman was previously attached to direct the X-Men spinoff Gambit, long in development with Channing Tatum still set to star, for the opportunity to direct Justice League Dark. Now he's not making either movie. The director revealed why he ultimately left the DC Comics project to IGN. His reasons are not similar to why he exited Gambit, when he said he could not connect to the script.
"I was really excited by the characters and that world, but I'm doing Chaos Walking for Lionsgate next and then Tom [Cruise] and I are hoping to do the sequel to Edge of Tomorrow so it just became a scheduling nightmare," Liman said, adding "That's the problem with directing. Producers can do multiple films, you know? Directing is like being married."
As Liman himself said, he still has a comic-related property in the pipeline with Live, Die, Repeat And Repeat, the sequel to Edge of Tomorrow. That story is based on the manga and light novel called All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. Liman just won't be working in the worlds of Marvel or DC Comics any time soon.
A Justice League Dark animated film recently released to home video, based on the comic book. That movie features Batman teaming up with Constantine, Swamp Thing, Deadman, and others. It's unclear whether the movie will feature similar characters.
Guillermo del Toro was originally attached to the project, but exited in June 2015 after delays in development. Liman was announced as director of the project in August 2016, when it was announced it would be called Dark Universe.
Now that Universal Pictures announced Dark Universe as the title of their shared monster universe, it's unclear if the name will stick.
With the critical (and likely commercial) success of Wonder Woman and so many other DC-related projects in Warner Bros. pipeline, who knows when or if we will ever see Justice League Dark in theaters.