James Gunn is giving hope to all those who wish to see a Marvel and DC Universe crossover. Since Gunn has become the head of DC Studios, he recently told Empire Magazine that he’s “certain that’s more likely now that I’m in charge.”
“Who knows? That’s many years away, though,” Gunn added. “I think we have to establish what we’re doing [at DC] first. I would be lying to say that we haven’t discussed it. But all discussions have been very, very light and fun.”
Gunn’s final directing project for Marvel is the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. He already has directed DC’s 2021 movie, The Suicide Squad. Now, Gunn is leading DC Studios with producer Peter Safran and is crafting a new DC Universe. Chapter one of this first phase is called “Gods and Monsters.” That kicks off with 2025’s Superman: Legacy, which Gunn is writing and directing.
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“It’s not like Superman is going to have exactly the same vibe as a Guardians movie,” Gunn told Rolling Stone earlier this week. “It’s actually quite different.” However, he tells the publication of the “superhero fatigue” that has plagued films and television. “I think it doesn’t have anything to do with superheroes,” he speculates. “It has to do with the kind of stories that get to be told and if you lose your eye on the ball, which is character.” After listing favorites like Superman, Batman and Iron Man, Gunn says it’s because they’re these “incredible characters that we have in our hearts. And if it becomes just a bunch of nonsense onscreen, it gets really boring.” The director admits he gets fatigued “by most spectacle films, by the grind of not having an emotionally grounded story.”
Marvel and DC
As for a rivalry between Marvel and DC, Gunn believes the two superhero entertainment hubs actually make each other better. “I think the better Marvel movies do, it’s better for DC, and the better DC movies do, it’s better for Marvel,” he tells the publication.
Gunn has been open about Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige supporting his transition to leading DC Studios. As we previously reported, the first chapter of Gunn and Safran’s DCEU is called “Gods and Monsters.” That phase will include a Superman movie reboot, a Supergirl film, a Wonder Woman-based HBO Max series and more. There will also be a sequel to The Batman which will exist outside of the DCEU, and will be labeled as an “Elseworlds” film.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 hits theaters on May 5, while Superman: Legacy is slotted for a July 11, 2025 release.
Actors Who Appeared in Both DC and Marvel Movies
With so many movies being based on the comics from DC and Marvel, these studios are always in need of actors to star in their respective films. The popularity of these brands has routinely allowed studios to attract major names but has also helped to turn lesser-known actors into huge stars. Because DC and Marvel movies have such a pull, actors seem willing to take any role, no matter how big or small — with some double-dipping into multiple projects. Below is a list of the many actors that have starred in both Marvel and DC movies and TV shows:
Saldana has spent the last several years in the MCU, but she was in a DC movie called 'The Losers' before that. Saldana made her MCU debut in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' as Gamora and reprised the role in the sequel and the last two Avengers films. She will be returning to the role for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 as a Gamora from an alternate timeline.
Kravitz played Angel Salvadore in 'X-Men: First Class,' while she voiced Mary Jane Watson in 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.' Kravitz also played Catwoman in 'The Lego Batman Movie' and, coincidentally, also played Catwoman in 'The Batman' movie alongside Robert Pattinson.
Zazie made her first appearance playing Domino in 'Deadpool 2' alongside Ryan Reynolds. A year later, Beetz starred as Sophie Dumond in 'Joker' alongside Joaquin Phoenix.
Levi replaced Josh Dallas as Fandral in 'Thor: The Dark World' and returned briefly in 'Thor: Ragnarok.' Most recently, he plays the lead role in 'Shazam!' and will return to star in the sequel, 'Shazam! 2.'
Dafoe played Norman Osborn AKA the Green Goblin in Sony's 'Spider-Man' franchise, later reprising his role for 'Spider-Man: No Way Home.' Defoe also played Vulko in both 'Aquaman' and 'Zack Snyder's Justice League.'
Regan appeared in 'Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance' as Toma Nikasevic. More recently, Regan is set to appear in 'Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom' as Atlan, the first king of Atlantis.
Baker is a highly prolific voice actor who has lent his voice talents to numerous animated projects. For Marvel, Baker voiced Hawkeye and Kraven the Hunter in various projects such as 'Ultimate Spider-Man,' 'Marvel’s Spider-Man,' and the anime film 'Iron Man: Rise of Technovore.' For DC, Baker has voiced both Batman and the Joker in 'Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' and 'Batman: The Long Halloween.'
Tommy Lee Jones played Harvey Dent AKA Two-Face in 'Batman Forever.' Jones later joined the MCU to play Colonel Phillips in the first Captain America movie.
Hardy has already played two major DC and Marvel characters. His first outing came when he played Batman's nemesis Bane in 'The Dark Knight Rises.' Hardy has since joined Marvel with the 'Venom' franchise as Eddie Brock. He also appeared in the 'Spider-Man: No Way Home' post-credits scene.
Swinton originally joined DC instead of Marvel portraying Gabriel in Keanu Reeves' 'Constantine' back in 2005. She has since moved to the MCU as the Ancient One in 'Doctor Strange.' She later returned in 'Avengers: Endgame' thanks to time travel after her character died in 'Doctor Strange.'
Stamp's first appearance came in 'Superman,' where he played the villainous General Zod. A few years later, he reappeared in 'Superman II.' 25 years later, Stamp made an appearance in a Marvel movie as Stick in 'Elektra.'
Waititi had a role in 'Green Lantern,' where he played Hal's best friend Tom Kalmaku. Waititi then played the role of Korg in 'Thor: Ragnarok' and reprised it for 'Avengers: Endgame' and 'Thor: Love and Thunder.' He returned to DC for a brief cameo in 'The Suicide Squad' as Ratcatcher in a flashback giving a life lesson to his daughter, Ratcatcher 2.
Sly debuted in the MCU in 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2' in a small role as the ravager captain Stakar Ogord. He then went on to appear in Gunn's 'The Suicide Squad' as the voice for King Shark.
For DC, Blum’s roles include the sins of Envy and Gluttony in 'Shazam!' and Solomon Grundy in the upcoming animated film 'Catwoman: Hunted.' With Marvel, Blum provided the voice of Wolverine in multiple projects such as 'Wolverine and the X-Men,' the direct-to-video animated movie 'Hulk Vs.' and the Green Goblin in 'The Spectacular Spider-Man' cartoon.
Director James Gunn casted his brother Sean in The Suicide Squad as the freaky Weasel. He also makes a brief cameo as Calendar Man. In the 'Guardians of the Galaxy' movies, Gunn plays Kraglin, the first mate in the Yondu Ravager Clan.
Reynolds' first Marvel role was as Hannibal King in 'Blade: Trinity,' but he then played Hal Jordan in DC's horrible 'Green Lantern.' He eventually redeemed himself in a starring role in Marvel's 'Deadpool' franchise, he played a much different-looking version of the character in 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine.'
In 2013, Crowe played Jor-El in 'Man of Steel.' Nearly a decade later, Crowe entered the MCU as Zeus in 'Thor: Love and Thunder.'
Scott plays Dan Lewis, Anne Weying’s boyfriend, and later fiance, in both 'Venom' and 'Venom: Let There Be Carnage.' Additionally, Scott voiced both Green Arrow and Victor Zsasz in the animated movie 'Injustice.'
In 2018, Park played Agent Jimmy Woo in 'Ant-Man and The Wasp' and appeared in 'Aquaman' the same year as Dr. Stephen Shin. Park is expected to reprise both of these roles in the future, but so far, Woo has only reappeared in 'WandaVision.'
Weisz first appeared in 2005's 'Constantine' as Angela Dodson. In 2021, Weisz made her MCU debut as she crossed over to appear as Melina, Natasha Romanoff's deep-cover mother, in 'Black Widow.'
Pom plays Mantis, Star-Lord's sister in the 'Guardians of the Galaxy' series. Her first DC appearance was in an extremely brief and uncredited cameo in 'The Suicide Squad' as a dancer in a bar that the main group visited in Corto Maltese.
In 2004, Patton Oswalt played Hedges in Marvel's 'Blade: Trinity.' He played Billy Koenig on 'Agents of SHIELD' as well as Pip the Troll in 'Eternals.' For DC, Oswalt voiced the Atom in the animated 'Teen Titans Go! To The Movies,' which he later reprised for the series.
For Marvel, Cage played Johnny Blaze AKA Ghost Rider for 'Ghost Rider' and 'Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.' He later voiced "Spider-Man Noir" for "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse." For DC, he voiced Superman in the animated 'Teen Titans Go! To The Movies,' a reference to the fact that he'd been rumored to be playing Superman in a film for years (it never happened).
Fillion has voiced multiple DC characters in animated adaptations in the past, including Wonder Woman's love interest Steve Trevor and Green Lantern in 'Green Lantern: Emerald Knights.' He also made a brief and hilarious appearance at the start of 'The Suicide Squad' as T.D.K. or "The Detachable Kid." For Marvel, he voiced an inmate in the first 'Guardians of the Galaxy.'
Lyonne's first notable superhero role was in 2004’s 'Blade: Trinity' as the blind Nightstalker Sommerfield. Lyonne also starred in 'DC League of Super-Pets' as Terrific Whatzit.
Portman played Evey in DC's 'V for Vendetta.' A few years later, she made the transition to the MCU to play Jane Foster. She made her debut in the first 'Thor' film.
Pfeiffer made her DC debut in 'Batman Returns' as Catwoman. Years later, she joined the MCU to play Janet van Dyne, the original Wasp. She first appeared in 'Ant-Man and The Wasp' and will also be in 'And-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.'
Rooker played Yondu Udonta in 'Guardians of the Galaxy,' a role that he reprised in Marvel's 'What If...?' In DC's 'The Suicide Squad,' Rooker cameoed as Savant.
Keaton made his DC debut in Tim Burton's 1989 'Batman' movie and reprised it years later for 'Batman Returns.' Decades later, Keaton joined the MCU to play Adrian Toomes AKA Vulture in 'Spider-Man: Homecoming,' reprising that role in 'Morbius.' He returns as Batman in 'The Flash.'
Fassbender played Burke in DC's 2010 'Jonah Hex.' The following year, he made the jump to Marvel to play Magneto in the 'X-Men' movie and its subsequent sequels.
Duncan joined his first superhero movie in 2003 as the Kingpin in Marvel's 'Daredevil.' Several years later, Duncan provided the voice for Kilowog in DC's 'Green Lantern.'
For Marvel, Hamill voiced Dr. Oiler in the animated film 'Ultimate Avengers 2: Rise of the Panther.' For DC, he voiced the Joker in the DC Animated Universe, including for 'Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker.' He later reprised the role for 'Batman: The Killing Joke.'
Liu will make her first DC appearance in 'Shazam! Fury of the Gods' as the villainous god Kalypso. Before that, she directed an episode of Marvel's 'Luke Cage' series. OK, technically she didn't "appear" in a Marvel show or movie but at least she got paychecks from both DC and Marvel!
Linda Cardellini plays Hawkeye’s wife, Laura Barton, who is also a former SHIELD agent. Several years before being cast as Laura, Cardellini had a small part in the animated adaptation of 'All-Star Superman,' playing Lex Luthor’s niece and assistant Nasthalthia.
Fishburne's first Marvel credit comes from his voice acting as Silver Surfer in 'Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.' He then joined DC to play Daily Planet's Perry White in 'Justice League.' He made his DCEU debut in 'Man of Steel' and then returned for 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.' Fishburne later joined the MCU to play Bill Foster in 'Ant-Man and The Wasp.'
Brolin's first DC role was as the lead of 'Jonah Hex' in 2010. Moving to Marvel, he played Thanos, and also played Cable in 'Deadpool 2.'
Favreau directed and starred in 'Iron Man' as Happy Hogan. He appeared in various MCU films ever since as the character. Favreau had a small part as one of Bruce Wayne’s assistants in 'Batman Forever.'
Remember when Manganiello entered the superhero movie world in 'Spider-Man' as bully Flash Thompson? Though he didn't return for the sequel, he was back for 'Spider-Man 3.' More recently, Manganiello came to DC to make an uncredited cameo as Slade Wilson AKA Deathstroke in 'Justice League.'
JK Simmons began his time in superhero movies in Sony's 'Spider-Man' trilogy as J. Jonah Jameson, the bad-tempered boss of the 'Daily Bugle.' After the trilogy ended, Simmons moved to DC to play Commissioner Jim Gordon in 'Justice League. However, Simmons has reprised his role as J. Jonah Jameson by playing an alternate version of the character in the MCU from 'Spider-Man: Far From Home' onward.
First appearing in 'Suicide Squad' as The Joker, he later returned in 'Zack Snyder's Justice League.' In 2022, Leto entered the MCU as the lead in 'Morbius.' All of these roles Leto played were heavily criticized by fans.
Marsden joined his first superhero movie in 2000 when he played Cyclops in 'X-Men.' He returned to play the role in the two sequels before temporarily moving to DC. Marsden then played Perry White's son Richard in 'Superman Returns.' He later reprised his role as Cyclops in the (for now) non-MCU 'X-Men: Days of Future Past.'
Elba played Roque in DC's 2010 'The Losers' movie before making his MCU debut as Heimdall in 2011's 'Thor.' Elba then appeared in a non-MCU movie as Moreau in 'Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance,' but then returned as Heimdall in both 'Thor' sequels and 'Avengers: Infinity War' — where his character died. While Heimdall might be dead, his character appeared in 'Thor: Love and Thunder's post-credits scene. Elba also returned to DC in 2021 as Bloodsport in James Gunn's 'The Suicide Squad.'
Weaving starred in DC's 'V for Vendetta.' He later played Red Skull in 'Captain America: The First Avenger' but did not reprise the role during the character's appearances in 'Avengers: Endgame' or 'Marvel's What If...?'
You may know Halle Berry best for her portrayal as Storm in the 'X-Men' series. Before finishing the trilogy, she jumped to DC to play Catwoman -- another iconic comic book role (but a terrible movie).
Tatasciore voiced Jim Gordon’s corrupt partner Arnold Flass in the animated films 'Batman: Year One,' Gorilla Grodd in 'Batman Ninja,' and Lex Luthor in 'JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time.' For Marvel, Tatasciore is most often cast as the Hulk in animated projects like 'Ultimate Avengers' and 'Avengers Confidential: Black Widow & Punisher.'
Kasumba has played Ayo of the Dora Milaje starting from 'Captain America: Civil War,' reappearing in 'The Falcon and the Winter Soldier' and in both 'Black Panther' films. For DC, she played the Amazon warrior Acantha in 'Wonder Woman.'
In 2008, Tahir was in 'Iron Man' as Raza, the Ten Rings commander who was hired by Obadiah Stane to kill Tony Stark. More recently, Tahir voiced Ra’s al Ghul in DC’s 'Injustice.'
Jones’ first appearance in a DC film was in 'Batman Returns,' in a minor role as one of Penguin’s henchmen, the Thin Clown. Years later, Jones he played the Silver Surfer in the 'Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer' movie, though Laurence Fishburne voiced the character.
Hounsou played a lot of roles for both DC and Marvel, getting his start as Midnite in DC's 'Constantine.' Hounsou then moved to the MCU to play Korath in 'Guardians of the Galaxy.' He later returned to DC to voice King Ricou in 'Aquaman,' then played Korath again in 'Captain Marvel,' and most recently jumped back to DC to play The Wizard in 'Shazam!'
Harbour first entered DC with his portrayal of Dexter Tolliver in the 2016 'Suicide Squad.' He then went to the MCU as the Russian supersoldier Red Guardian in 'Black Widow.' He also appeared in the 2019 'Hellboy' movie reboot. However, while the character has appeared in DC crossovers, the character himself belongs to neither Marvel nor DC.
Dastmalchian's first comic book role was as one of Joker's thugs in 'The Dark Knight.' He entered the MCU in 2015's 'Ant-Man' as one of Paul Rudd's sidekicks and reprised the role in the sequel. He returned to DC to play Abra Kadabra in the CW TV show 'The Flash' and was later cast in 'The Suicide Squad' as Polka-Dot Man.
Huston played a younger version of Stryker in 2009's 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine.' He then joined the cast of 'Wonder Woman' to play the German General Ludendorff.
Though Brown hasn't physically appeared in either universe, he voiced Parallax in DC's 'Green Lantern.' Years later, he joined the cast of 'Thor: Ragnarok' as the voice of Surtur. Back in 1996, he voiced Sasquatch for an episode in 'The Incredible Hulk' TV series.
Hinds has been cast as a villain in both DC and Marvel movies. With Marvel, he played Mephisto in 'Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.' More recently, Hinds was the voice of Steppenwolf in 'Justice League,' later reprising the role in Zack Snyder's new cut of the film.
Iwuji made his DC debut as Clemson Murn in 'Peacemaker.' Iwuji will also join the MCU, where he'll play High Evolutionary, the main antagonist of 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.'
Bale played one of the best Batmans in 'The Dark Knight Trilogy' in the eponymous role. Starting out with 'Batman Begins' in 2005, he returned for 'The Dark Knight' and 'The Dark Knight Rises' before retiring from the role. In 2022, Bale made his first appearance in a Marvel movie as Gorr the God Butcher in 'Thor: Love and Thunder.'
Pine played Steve Trevor in 'Wonder Woman' and 'Wonder Woman 1984,' even though his character died in the original film. Pine also provided the voice for Peter Parker in 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.'
Evans is best known for his MCU superhero role as Captain America, but he played other comic book characters before then. Evans played Johnny Storm AKA Human Torch in the 'Fantastic Four' films. Then, he played Jensen in 'The Losers.'
In DC's 'Joker,' Henry played an Arkham clerk named Carl. Henry was then the voice of Miles Morales' father, Jefferson Davis, in 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.' He then fully appeared in the MCU as Phastos in 'Eternals.'
Cullen played Barton Blaze, the father of Johnny Blaze, in 'Ghost Rider.' He then switched to DC to play a congressman in 'The Dark Knight Rises' before playing Thomas Wayne in 'Joker' a few years later.
Mendelsohn played Daggett, the owner of a construction company Dagget Industries and later tried to take control of Wayne Enterprises with Bane's help in 'The Dark Knight Rises.' He joined the MCU a few years later as the Skrull Talos in 'Captain Marvel.' The following year, Mendelsohn played the character in a cameo in 'Spider-Man: Far From Home' and he'll reprise the role in 2023 in 'Secret Invasion.'
Affleck first played a superhero in 2003's 'Daredevi'l as the blind lawyer Matt Murdock. Over a decade later, Affleck joined DC as the next Batman in 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice' and cameoed in 'Suicide Squad.' Affleck later starred in both 'Justice League' and 'Zack Snyder's Justice League,' and he is set to return as Batman in 'The Flash' and 'Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom.'
In DC's 'Green Lantern,' Bassett played Dr. Amanda Waller. She then joined the MCU in 2018 as Black Panther's mother Ramonda. She has appeared in both 'Black Panther' films and 'Avengers: Endgame.'
In the 'X-Men' film franchise 'The New Mutants,' Braga played Cecilia Reyes, an agent of Essex Corp who recruits the main characters into the organization. More recently, she had a part in 'The Suicide Squad' as Sol Soria, the leader of the resistance in Corto Maltese.
Akinnuoye-Agbaje first appeared in 'Thor: The Dark World' where he played the Dark Elf named Algrim. He then played Killer Croc in 2016's 'Suicide Squad.'
In 2016, Beach played Slipknot in 'Suicide Squad.' More recently, he was in 'The New Mutants' movie as Dani Moonstar’s father William Lonestar. His character was killed in both roles.