It has often been pointed out that some recent movies have been getting the perfectly appropriate blend of talent in front of and behind the camera. This extends to superhero films from the big two studios. Marvel’s Black Panther, a hero and king from a fictional African nation, had an African-American directing his 2018 MCU film. Wonder Woman, quite fittingly, had a woman on the chair for both the original 2017 blockbuster and its 2020 sequel. Back with Warner Bros. and its DC superhero movie-verse, they announced “Blue Beetle” back in 2018, based on the contemporary, Latino version of the character; quite fitting that they tapped a Latino as director.
Entertainment Weekly tells us that Warner Bros. Pictures and DC Films have decided on Angel Manuel Soto as their director for the in-development superhero film “Blue Beetle.” Soto is most recently well-known for the 2020 drama “Charm City Kings” from Sony Pictures, which was released digitally on HBO Max. He will be joining writer Gareth Dunnett-Alcocer and executive producer Zev Foreman on the project, which has yet to cast its lead. However, both Soto and Dunnett-Alcocer, who was born in Mexico, are perfect for developing a story about the Blue Beetle, real name Jaime Reyes.
For a quick reference, Blue Beetle is actually three different superheroes sharing a beetle costume motif. The original was created by Fox Feature Syndicate in 1939, and when Charlton Comics gained the rights to the character, they eventually revamped him as a new hero in 1966, changing the mystical scarab origin for a tech-based approach. DC Comic then obtained the Charlton stable, but continued to use the second Blue Beetle until he was killed in 2005. Both these Blue Beetles were Caucasians, with a third DC-created Blue Beetle, Mexican-American Jaime Reyes, being introduced in 2006.
“It is an honor to direct Blue Beetle, the first Latino superhero film for DC,” Soto said in a statement following his selection as director. “I want to sincerely thank everyone at Warner Bros. and DC for trusting me to bring Jaime Reyes to life. I can’t wait to make history together.” This are certainly shaping up to hype the Warner-DC film as the one that will push Latino superheroes to the spotlight in the same way Wonder Woman and Black Panther have done for women and the African-American community.
The Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle actually had a prior live-action appearance, in season 10 of The WB/The CW series “Smallville.”
Image: Consequences of Sound, Twitter