During the 2018 holidays, the faltering DC Extended Universe superhero film franchise of Warner Bros. Pictures received a big bounce-back following the critical and box office misstep of 2017’s “Justice League” with “Aquaman.” This first post-“JL” solo film about the world’s most famous aquatic superhero with the power to talk to fish starred Jason Momoa and got good reviews along with becoming the fifth top-grosser for 2018 cinema. Its success led to development of a spinoff and a direct sequel for 2022 with Momoa. Unfortunately, the actor intimated that he might be too busy protesting a major construction project in Hawaii to reprise his role.
Comic Book Resources tells us that Jason Momoa has hinted on social media that he might be dropping the role of Arthur Curry/Aquaman on the upcoming sequel for the DCEU superhero movie. In fact, his post on Instagram related a sarcastically grim reason for why he cannot reprise the character, on account of his involvement in the ongoing protests by native Hawaiians, including the actor, against the resumed construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT), a new astronomical observatory being built on the summit of the dormant Mauna Kea volcano on the state’s Big Island.
“Sorry Warner Bros we can’t shoot Aquaman 2. Because Jason got run over by a bulldozer trying to stop the desecration of his native land,” Momoa wrote on his Instagram captioning a photo of the ongoing construction for the TMT complex at Mauna Kea, considered as sacred ground for the native Hawaiian population. “This is what telescope construction looks like (Subaru Telescope, 1992). The TMT will be four times larger on unscathed land,” the actor added as he called on his fellow native Hawaiians to join in the protests against the observatory project, which resumed construction this past July 15.
Work on the Thirty Meter Telescope began on the early part of this decade, but protests by the native Hawaiians, who have lived on the island for centuries before the arrival of Americans from the mainland, succeeded in halting construction by October 2014. The Hawaii state Supreme Court would invalidate building permits for the TMT until finally approving it on December 2018. This time, when protestors blocked access roads for the construction site last month, it only led to the July 17 arrest of 38, all of them native tribal elders (Kupuna). A follow-up social media entry by Jason Momoa called for more cooperation between native Hawiians born in the state and the descendants of those who have moved overseas.
Warner Bros. slates “Aquaman 2,” to be directed again by James Wan, to release on the 2022 holidays. Also in development is “The Trench,” a spinoff featuring the monstrous aquatic race encountered by Aquaman and Mera in the original film.
Image courtesy of Metro UK