Aquaman Director Reveals Cancelled Spinoff Was Really A Black Manta Movie


In the wake of Aquaman‘s enormous box office success over Christmas 2018, Warner Bros. announced an unlikely spinoff — titled The Trench, it was expected to be more of a horror flick that focused on the dark creatures that dwelled in the titular trench, as introduced in the Jason Momoa vehicle. Like many DCEU projects before and since, though, WB ultimately pulled the plug on it. But now we’ve found out something about it that makes us wish it got made.

As pointed out by @Uber_Kryptonian on Twitter, James Wan recently dropped a major revelation about The Trench on his Instagram. The director shared some first-look images as Yaya Abdul-Mateen II’s revamped Black Manta costume for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, causing one fan to ask him in the comments if we could ever get a spinoff all about David Hyde. Here’s how Wan replied:

“I’ll let you in on a secret, the cancelled Trench spin-off movie was really going to be a secret Black Manta movie.”

Assuming Wan isn’t just yanking our chain here, this is big news. Until the filmmaker reveals more details, though, we can only speculate how that would’ve worked. Was The Trench just a provisional title and, if it officially got the green light, it would’ve later been retitled Black Manta? Maybe, but it’s more likely it would’ve been called The Trench, with DC apparently deciding the horror angle would be more of a hook to audiences, and then it would’ve followed Mateen’s character in a starring role.

Whatever the case, its cancellation likely meant that Black Manta was folded back into the mainline movies and we can expect Hyde to feature in a big way in the upcoming sequel. Aquaman‘s post-credits scene saw the villain determined to get revenge on Arthur Curry for both the death of his father and besting him in battle, so you can be sure there’s a heck of a rematch coming up.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom doesn’t hit theaters until December 2022. So, for now, let us know how you feel about Black Manta’s solo project being canceled in the comments.