Ranking the Upcoming Marvel and DC Movies: From Surefire Hits to Potential Flops

Ready for the Future of Marvel and DC? Discover the 9 Most Anticipated Films from both universes in this listicle"
Ready for the Future of Marvel and DC? Discover the 9 Most Upcoming Films from both universes (Image via Sportskeeda)

Over the years, the Marvel and DC Cinematic Universes have been expanding and snowballing with new characters and stories being introduced to audiences. As a result, fans eagerly await the next big thing from both universes.

With so many highly anticipated upcoming films, it can be tough to keep track of which ones are likely to be hits and which ones may have a chance of flopping. Hence, this article will rank the upcoming Marvel and DC movies of 2023 that are sure to be either surefire hits or have a chance at underperforming.

Disclaimer: This article purely reflects the author's opinions, which are subjective by nature.


Exploring New Characters and Stories: A Look at the Upcoming Marvel and DC Films

9) Blue Beetle (DC) - August 18, 2023

Join the adventure of a teenage hero on the rise as Xolo Maridueña takes on the mantle of Blue Beetle in the upcoming film 'Blue Beetle' (DC)
Join the adventure of a teenage hero on the rise as Xolo Maridueña takes on the mantle of Blue Beetle in the upcoming film 'Blue Beetle' (DC)

The 14th movie in the DC Extended Universe, Blue Beetle will center on the persona of Jaime Reyes, a young superhero who is in possession of the Scarab, a powerful alien weapon. The movie will follow Jaime as he develops into a teenage hero and confronts the responsibilities that come with having superhuman abilities. Angel Manuel Soto is credited as the director of the movie, while Xolo Maridueña plays Jaime Reyes/Blue Beetle.

With the film being directed by a relatively unknown director and featuring a relatively unknown cast, the movie can potentially face challenges in attracting a wider audience due to its lesser-known status compared to more established characters. This is why it is ranked ninth on this list.


8) Kraven the Hunter (Marvel) - October 6, 2023

Get ready to hunt down the ultimate Spider-Man hunter in the upcoming film 'Kraven the Hunter' starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Images via Sony)
Get ready to hunt down the ultimate Spider-Man hunter in the upcoming film 'Kraven the Hunter' starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Images via Sony)

The fourth installment of Sony's Spider-Man Universe, Kraven the Hunter will focus on Sergei Kravinoff, also known as Kraven the Hunter. The movie will examine the titular hero's past and how he becomes one of Spider-Man's most formidable adversaries.

Directed by J.C. Chandor, the film stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Kraven and Ariana DeBose as Calypso. Legendary actor Russell Crowe has also been hired for a yet-to-be-disclosed role in the movie.

Due to its emphasis on antagonists and Kraven's relative underachievement compared to past villains of Spider-Man, the movie might have trouble drawing in a larger audience. It is rated eighth on the list because villain-centric movies frequently attract a smaller audience, as was seen in the cases of such as Venom (2018) and Suicide Squad (2016). Hence, the reception might impact how well they succeed.


7) Shazam! Fury of the Gods (DC) - March 17, 2023

Unleash the power of the gods with Zachary Levi as Shazam in the upcoming sequel 'Shazam! Fury of the Gods' (Images via DC)
Unleash the power of the gods with Zachary Levi as Shazam in the upcoming sequel 'Shazam! Fury of the Gods' (Images via DC)

Shazam! Fury of the Gods is the sequel to the 2019 film Shazam! and will continue with the story of Billy Batson, played by Zachary Levi. David F. Sandberg is the director of the film, with the cast including Asher Angel as Billy Batson and Mark Strong as Doctor Sivana.

The first film was a box office success, and fans are excited to see what the sequel will bring. However, the movie may not perform as well as other upcoming films due to the mixed reception and commercial underperformance of the first film. This is why it is ranked seventh on the list.


6) The Marvels (Marvel) - July 28, 2023

Get ready to meet a new generation of heroes in 'The Marvels' as Iman Vellani, Teyonah Parris, and Brie Larson take the lead in the highly-anticipated upcoming film (Images via Marvel Studios)
Get ready to meet a new generation of heroes in 'The Marvels' as Iman Vellani, Teyonah Parris, and Brie Larson take the lead in the highly-anticipated upcoming film (Images via Marvel Studios)

The Marvels is a follow-up to the 2019 movie Captain Marvel and will continue the narrative of Brie Larson's Carol Danvers. Iman Vellani plays Ms. Marvel in the film, which is being directed by Nia DaCosta. Meanwhile, Teyonah Parris reprises her role as Monica Rambeau.

The film will explore Carol Danvers' leadership and guidance as she leads a special group of heroes and introduces new characters and concepts to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Due to probable difficulties in connecting with the audience and the picture being made by a relatively unknown director, the movie might not fare as well as other upcoming films.

It's also uncertain if the public will be as involved in the stories of the new generation of heroes in MCU, so focusing on them may be difficult. As a result, it is placed sixth on this list.


5) The Flash (DC) - June 23, 2023

Join Ezra Miller as Barry Allen on a journey through the multiverse in the highly-anticipated film 'The Flash' (Images via DC)
Join Ezra Miller as Barry Allen on a journey through the multiverse in the highly-anticipated film 'The Flash' (Images via DC)

The Flash is focused on Ezra Miller's portrayal of Barry Allen and will see the multiverse theory and the universe of the Flash being explored. Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton plays Bruce Wayne/Batman in the film, which is being directed by Andy Muschietti. Moreover, fans are anticipating Miller's performance as Barry Allen take a major spot after seeing his character being sidelined in Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), Suicide Squad (2016), and Justice League (2017).

The film is said to be inspired by the Flashpoint story arc from the comic books, which would allow the movie to explore an alternate reality where things have happened differently than they have in the central DC universe.

Due to its turbulent production history, the strain of living up to the expectations of the devoted fandom, and the difficulty in translating the character for the big screen, The Flash may not be as popular as other movies. Therefore, it is placed fifth on this list of movies.


4) Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom (DC) - December 25, 2023

Dive into the depths of the ocean with Jason Momoa as Aquaman in the highly-anticipated sequel, 'Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom' (Images via DC)
Dive into the depths of the ocean with Jason Momoa as Aquaman in the highly-anticipated sequel, 'Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom' (Images via DC)

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is a sequel to the 2018 film Aquaman and will continue the story of Arthur Curry, played by Jason Momoa. This time, the film is set to introduce new characters and elements to the Aquaman story, such as the Lost Kingdom of Atlantis and its history.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom may perform better than average among other forthcoming films due to the success and positive reception of the first film. The introduction of new elements to the narrative, such as the Lost Kingdom of Atlantis and its history, with the direction by James Wan may prove to bring success to the DC film.


3) Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (Marvel) - May 5, 2023

Join the Guardians of the Galaxy on their next intergalactic adventure in the highly-anticipated 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3' (Images via Marvel Studios)
Join the Guardians of the Galaxy on their next intergalactic adventure in the highly-anticipated 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3' (Images via Marvel Studios)

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is the third installment in the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise. The film will continue the story of the following Guardians - Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper), and Groot (Vin Diesel).

The film is directed by James Gunn, who led the first two films. In addition, the cast sees Will Poulter as Adam Warlock, Pom Klementieff as Mantis, Karen Gillan as Nebula, and Elizabeth Debicki as Ayesha, and many more.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 may perform well among other upcoming films due to the built-in audience from previous MCU movies. The dedicated fanbase of the franchise, the return of James Gunn as the director, the unique tone, humor and music of the franchise which may attract a wider audience. Hence, its rank on the third position on this list.


2) Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (Marvel) - June 2, 2023

Enter the multiverse of Spider-Man and other versions of the web-slinger join forces in the upcoming film 'Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse' (Images via Sony)
Enter the multiverse of Spider-Man and other versions of the web-slinger join forces in the upcoming film 'Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse' (Images via Sony)

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is a sequel film to Into the Spiderverse. Exploring the concept of the multiverse, the movie will feature multiple versions of Spider-Man from different dimensions. It will also see the return of Miles Morales, the main protagonist from the Spider-Verse films.

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse may perform exceptionally well due to the success of previous Spider-Man films, a dedicated fanbase, the inclusion of various versions of Spider-Man from the multiverse, the direction of critically acclaimed animated series director Joaquim Dos Santos, and the talented cast of actors.


1) Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Marvel) - February 17, 2023

Join Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly as they shrink down and gear up for an interdimensional adventure in the upcoming sequel 'Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania' (Images via Marvel Studios)
Join Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly as they shrink down and gear up for an interdimensional adventure in the upcoming sequel 'Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania' (Images via Marvel Studios)

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is the sequel to the 2018 film Ant-Man and the Wasp. The film is set to continue with the story of Scott Lang, played by Paul Rudd, and Hope van Dyne, played by Evangeline Lilly. Peyton Reed has directed the film, with the ensemble cast featuring Michael Douglas as Hank Pym, Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet van Dyne, and Kathryn Newton playing Cassie Lang in Peyton Reed's picture. Kang the Conqueror, played by Jonathan Majors, will also debut in the movie as a new antagonist.

Fans are eager to discover how the plot will develop, what new experiences Scott and Hope will have, and how the new antagonist will challenge them. Due to the popularity and favorable reviews of the first movie, the addition of Kang and other new characters and aspects, such as the idea of the Quantum Realm and its potential, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania might perform unusually well. The movie is placed first on the list of films since it also has a brilliant cast of performers that can draw in more viewers.


These nine films are highly anticipated for their fresh takes on beloved characters and the potential for new stories and concepts to be explored. With so many exciting films in the works, the future of the Marvel and DC Cinematic Universes is bright.

Quick Links

Edited by Priya Majumdar