“We just want to make Batman and Superman movies”: Canceled Green Arrow Movie Was Stephen Amell’s Golden Ticket into DCU

Warner Bros. axed Stephen Amell’s potential DCU film.

Canceled Green Arrow Movie Was Stephen Amell’s Golden Ticket into DCU

The Canadian actor Stephen Amell captivated the audiences with his exceptional performance as Oliver Queen, aka Green Arrow, in the eight seasons of the CW series. And he could have had the same glory on the silver screen as well, as Warner Bros. had plans for a movie centered around the DC comic book character. While the movie had the potential to serve as his gateway into the DC Universe, it was eventually canceled as the studio prioritized focusing only on Batman and Superman movies.

Human Target
CW’s Arrow

How a Lost Green Arrow Project Could Have Begun Stephen Amell’s DCU Journey

Around the late 2000s, filmmaker and screenwriter David S. Goyer, who is known for working on the Blade and Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, started working on a standalone Green Arrow movie. The Jungle Book writer, Justin Marks, also joined Goyer in the process.

Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen, aka Green Arrow
Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen, aka Green Arrow

The film titled Green Arrow: Escape From Super Max followed a falsely accused Oliver Queen, imprisoned in a maximum security prison filled with many DC villains, some of whom also become his companions to plan a prison escape together.

Its plot was reportedly received very well by the studio. However, after being in development for a while, the studio eventually decided to put it on hold. While the movie has not seen any progress in the past decade, it could have been a significant opportunity to bring Stephen Amell’s Arrow to the big screen.

A still from CW's ArrowA still from CW’s Arrow

The actor had become quite popular and a fan favorite in the CW series, and fans would have also loved to see one of their favorite DC characters take to the silver screen. However, Amell, or any other actor, did not get the opportunity as the studio decided to leave the project in limbo.

Why did Warner Bros. Canceled Green Arrow: Escape From Super Max?

Screenwriter David S. Goyer has talked about the canceled Green Arrow movie on several occasions. He has shared that the film included several cameos from popular DC villains like Joker and Riddler. During an interview with Den of Geek, he reflected on the reason why the film was canceled.

DC comic character Green ArrowDC Comics character Green Arrow

He shared that the movie was “ahead of its time.” He also shared that the studio decided to prioritize working on more Batman and Superman movies instead of a movie that featured a bunch of villains working with a superhero.

“The higher-ups, none of whom are at Warner Bros. anymore, just thought at the time, you know, we just want to make Batman and Superman movies,” he told the outlet. While the movie never saw the light of the day, with James Gunn taking the lead at DC Studios, Green Arrow could potentially make his DCU debut.

Arrow is available to stream on Netflix.

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