By Sahil Patel
Before there is a live-action “Justice League” feature film, there will be an animated “Justice League” web series.
Machinima, the YouTube network for gamers and “fanboys,” has acquired the rights to a three-part animated series starring the three biggest stars from DC Comics: Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. The series, “Justice League: Gods & Monsters Chronicles,” will debut on Machinima in 2015, promising an alternate take on the popular superheroes in advance of an animated film called “Justice League: Gods & Monsters,” which will be released by Warner Bros. later in 2015.
This is the first collaboration between Warner Bros. and Machinima since the studio led an $18 million investment round in the YouTube network in March. At the time, it was suggested that the partnership would result in the creation of new content based on popular IP within the Warner Bros. portfolio.
And there is no bigger IP than the DC Comics library, which has been the centerpiece of numerous critically acclaimed films and TV series.
“Ever since we announced the Warner Bros. strategic investment, we have been looking for a new and exciting way to tap into the company’s unmatched content,” said Machinima CEO Chad Gutstein in a statement. (As luck would have it, VideoInk interviewed Gutstein about the content deal during the OMD “Final Front” in Los Angeles. The interview is embedded below.)
“Justice League: Gods & Monsters Chronicles” explores a new take on the DC Universe, in which Justice League members Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman are much darker versions of the superheroes fans have grown accustomed to.
The series comes from Bruce Timm and Alan Burnett, the producers behind the beloved “Batman: The Animated Series.” It’s also the first project from Warner Bros. new digital production unit, which is headed up by Sam Register, president of Warner Bros. Animation and Warner Digital Series.
The “Justice League” animated feature the web series is based on is also being executive produced by Timm, with Burnett co-producing. It will be released by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment “weeks” after the web series debuts in the spring of 2015.
Here’s our interview with Gutstein: