The DC Universe is always expanding, and is known for twists on and off camera. A number of upcoming DC movies were filmed before James Gunn and Peter Safran were named co-CEOs, including James Wan's Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. The full trailer just arrived, and of course fans have thoughts about Amber Heard's Mera barely showing up in the first footage. And they're sounding off online.
The full trailer for Aquaman 2 just arrived, and teased another colorful adventure under the sea. While it featured lots of exciting footage, Amber Heard was noticeably missing as Mera. In fact, she only appeared in one brief shot. Folks on Twitter took umbrage with this choice given the importance of Mera as a character on the page and screen. As one person tweeted:
Mera is one of the most important characters in the Aquaman mythos and she had one fucking shot in this trailer this is pathetic
Fair point. Mera was arguably the biggest part in the first Aquaman movie, aside from Jason Momoa's title character. And as such, her being left out of the sequel's marketing is super noticeable. Especially since the trailer featured plenty of moments from other characters like Orm and Nicole Kidman's Atlanta, who is seemingly going to become a much larger character this time around.
Amber Heard's absence from the Aquaman 2 trailer has some fans thinking that Warner Bros. did this due to controversies surrounding the actress. Indeed, a popular online petition to have Heard removed from the DCU has gotten millions of signatures. And she is indeed in the movie, but presumably in a smaller role. Another shared their disappointment in this choice, tweeting:
I'm not getting over the Mera erasure they can come up with all the excuses they want but Aquaman (2018) was only as great as it was because she carried and was Arthur's equal. It's CRAZY that they went with the baby and marriage storyline and STILL cut so much of her screentime.
Mera being such a non entity in the first footage for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is a bold choice, given how she was a major figure in the first movie, while also appearing in other DC projects. She battled against Steppenwolf in both versions of Justice League, and was included in the Snyder Cut's Knightmare sequence. Another fan referenced this when posting about her lack of screen time in the trailer, saying:
Where is this version of Mera? pic.twitter.com/FNSHVuYUoUSeptember 14, 2023
The trailer for Aquaman 2 highlighted how much Arthur Curry had changed since we last saw him on the big screen (although he did get a cameo in The Flash's post-credits scene). The narration reveals that Jason Momoa's character is a husband and father now, and has had a lifestyle change. This is made Heard's absence all the more obvious, as Mera is presumably his wife, queen, and mother of his child. As another moviegoer posted:
So they made Jason’s Arthur a father in the Aquaman sequel but they’ve reduced the screen time of Amber’s Mera? That’s such a brainless spineless decision pic.twitter.com/R83DQ7Obj0September 14, 2023
Indeed, family seems to be at the center of the narrative for Aquaman 2. The villainous Black Manta vows to kill Arthur Curry's family for revenge, even burning down his father's lighthouse home. So shouldn't Mera be included?
How do you have a family centric movie and barely include his WIFE Mera? CHOP!
All of our questions will be revealed relatively shortly, as Aquaman 2 will hit theaters this December. The movie's trailer has definitely increase discourse surrounding the DC sequel, while there have been rumors about Amber Heard's role for the past year. We'll just have to see if this chatter helps the Jason Momoa sequel perform at the box office.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will hit theaters on December 20th. In the meantime, check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your next movie expeience.