Doug Liman Leaves Justice League Dark, Signs On for YA Adaptation Unearthed

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It remains to be seen if Universal’s “Dark Universe” franchise will continue to move forward after the lacklustre response to The Mummy, but in the meantime, Warner Brothers has been busy setting up a Dark Universe of their own. I’m referring, of course, to their Justice League Dark movie, which they were supposedly going to call Dark Universe until Universal stole the name (leading to a possible lawsuit). Doug Liman was attached to direct up until last month, but he recently dropped out to focus on the young adult thriller Chaos Walking. Now this week he has signed on to helm the start of another YA franchise called Unearthed. The plot synopsis is as follows:


“Set in a distant future where Earth has been undone by environmental disaster, Unearthed sees a scholar and a scavenger reluctantly team to venture to the planet of a now-extinct alien race. With the promise of a salve for Earth, the two must work together to explore an ancient alien temple and finds its life-altering secrets. But the deeper they go, the more the two discover they may not be help their own planet but rather hasten its destruction.”

The script is being written by Jez and John Henry Butterworth (Edge of Tomorrow), based on an upcoming book by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (The Starbound Trilogy). Liman is no stranger to YA sci-fi movies, having previously directed Jumper starring Hayden Christensen. That movie had an interesting premise but it ultimately failed to launch a franchise. Liman also has American Made coming out later this year and a couple of other Tom Cruise projects in the works (Live Die Repeat and Repeat aka Edge of Tomorrow 2 and Luna Park).

As for Justice League Dark, we are hearing that Warner Brothers already has a replacement in mind. Argetinian filmmaker Damian Szifron (Wild Tales) is said to be the current frontrunner, although nothing official has been announced as of yet. Are you disappointed that Doug Liman won’t be directing Justice League Dark?

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  • Lance

    The Edge of Tomorrow sequel is called Live Die Repeat and Repeat?? That’s an awesome tittle, but they really did screw themselves by not calling the original Live Die Repeat. It’s actually a weird case. Studios will usually like to keep the name of a sequel close to the original title, for obvious reasons. Most of the time the end result is just a number tack on to the end. You now have a studio that decided to change the name of a movie once it was on BluRay, but now have decided to do a sequel. I like the title they have decided on, but I wonder how many people who only saw Edge of Tomorrow in the theatre will wonder what it is.

  • Flo Lieb

    Amazing how many projects Doug Liman is entering only to leave them.

  • 9No

    That Unearthed synopsis is pretty much the plot of Prometheus. (With a dash of Covenant thrown in there.)