‘Blue Beetle’ Blasts Off at CinemaCon With Extended Trailer

Originally slated for HBO Max, the first DC movie centered on a Latino superhero will debut theatrically on August 18

Since Warner Bros. Discovery already dropped the first trailer right in time for “The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” it’s no surprise that “Blue Beetle” didn’t get much more new footage beyond a longer version of the existing trailer.

Of course, that trailer makes the case pretty well, and the next trailer will get played before most screenings of “The Flash,” “Barbie” and “The Meg 2” alongside rival kid-flicks like “The Haunted Mansion” and “TMNT: Mutant Mayhem” prior to its August 18 theatrical debut.  

We got an extended version of the trailer Tuesday at CinemaCon in Las Vegas, with Xolo Maridueña’s Jamie Reyes stumbling upon a mystical scarab that turns him into the title hero.  It was the same trailer save for an extra final gag involving a senior citizen and a gattling gun.

The original ‘Blue Beetle; trailer

This will be the first DC/Marvel superhero flick centered on a Latino hero, which frankly makes one wish it came out a decade ago before superhero films were on the defensive. That Marvel waited until the end of the “Infinity Saga” to release films like “Black Panther” and “Captain Marvel” is, fair or not, an unfortunate circumstance. That we somehow went 10 years in the DC Films franchise without getting a John Stewart-starring Green Lantern film would be comical sans broader cultural context.  

The superhero movie had room for “Blade” and “The Mask of Zorro” when it was a less dominant tentpole sub-genre, and yet the last 15 years have been dominated by white guys named Chris. Only now, with the superhero movie comparatively on the ropes, are we seeing an all-in investment in inclusive superheroes.

Now that the notion of a comic book superhero film, even one from Marvel or DC, is no longer an automatic event, films based around lesser-known and, in many cases, women and/or minorities are tasked with holding up the entire sub-genre from which they were mostly excluded for a generation.   

The Angel Manuel Soto-directed and Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer-penned flick is the fourth of four Warner Bros. Discovery flicks (alongside “House Party,” “Magic Mike’s Last Dance” and “Evil Dead Rise”) that was initially intended for HBO Max before getting bumped up to a theatrical release.