Marvel vs DC: Shared Universes

In the last 7 years hollywood has been following a trend that began in 2008 with Iron man. Robert Downey Jr. became the first in a shared universe of superheroes. Next Marvel came out with Captain America: The First Avenger and Thor each receiving their own franchises and sequels, by 2011 we had five movies with three main characters in the Marvel cinematic universe. In the summer of 2012 The Avengers made cinema history by teaming up all three title characters in addition to some new heroes in a single movie. This new idea of having multiple storylines that culminate in a big event had never been done on the big screen. Since The Avengers Marvel has added Guardians of the Galaxy and The Avengers: Age of Ultron will be coming out later this year.

More recently Marvel has announced nine movies for their schedule. Starting with Captain America: Civil War in 2016 and ending with Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 in 2019. The list also includes the third installment in the Thor franchise and the sequel to the 2014 hit Guardians of the Galaxy. Along with the sequels some new heroes will be introduced including Benedict Cumberbatch in Doctor Strange (2016), Chadwick Boseman in Black Panther (2017), as well as the first female superhero to have her own movie, Captain Marvel (2018). Now to the DC side of things.(Yaniz, 2015)

Witnessing Marvel’s success with the shared universe approach to filmmaking DC, the company that owns the rights to Superman and Batman and the rest of the Justice League, quickly got the ball rolling on their shared universe. Publishing a film schedule through 2020 introducing Batman, WonderWoman, Aquaman along with other DC heroes into the universe started by Man of Steel in 2013. Eleven movies are slated from Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad in 2016 followed by:

  • Justice League: Part 1 (2017)
  • Wonder Woman (2017)
  • Aquaman (2018)
  • Flash (2018)
  • Justice League: Part 2 (2019)
  • Shazam (2019)
  • Green Lantern (2020)
  • Cyborg (2020)

DC has the advantage of learning from Marvel’s mistakes but must set their shared universe apart from Marvel’s. A task which might prove difficult given the headstart and experience Marvel has already gained. Only time will tell. (Dyce, 2015)



Robert,Yaniz Jr. (2015, February 15). Samuel L. Jackson on Marvel vs DC Movie Competition. Retrieved from:

Andrew Dyce. (2015, January 17). How DC Movie Universe Can Avoid Marvel Studios Mistakes. Retrieved from:




  1. Jolie · February 19, 2015

    The war between DC and Marvel has always been really interesting to follow! It only makes sense that Marvel will be releasing numerous sequels to their films, as most of them have been incredibly successful blockbusters but now DC has to follow suit with new movies in order to keep up. Saying that DC gets to learn from Marvel’s mistakes, but has the daunting task of separating their world from Marvel’s is a really important point to bring up. As a fan of both of the franchises, it’ll be cool to see how each company tries to accomplish this!
    – Christina


  2. kostem · February 20, 2015

    I agree with you that it could be hard for DC to distinguish themselves against Marvel. Marvel has recently been taking over the superhero industry and they do not seem ready to stop anytime soon. I believe that they have a really strong fan base right now that they have worked really hard to cultivate over the past few years, as where it seems that DC’s fan base has stayed the same, if not dwindled. (My fact here is coming from personal observations). If it is indeed true that Marvel’s fan base has grown at the expense of DC then DC has their work cut out for them. They are going to have to produce some wicked awesome films if they want to top Marvel.

    -Ali Robert/Voluntary Sector Gone Viral


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