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James Wan didn't go into making "Aquaman" thinking it would have to be the savior of the DC Extended Universe. He knew the movie would get a lot of attention from fans and the executives at Warner Bros. But he didn't think it would be on the level of "Furious 7," in which he had to figure out how to send off Paul Walker's character following the actor's death at the end of production in 2013.

JIt's the superhero "everyone makes fun of," as Wan said in an interview.

While Warner Bros. concentrated on making a standalone "Batman" movie with Ben Affleck, Wan would be hanging out with Jason Momoa (who plays Aquaman) and Amber Heard (Mera), surrounded by green screens that would one day become the mythical underwater city of Atlantis. At least, that's what Wan thought.

First, the DCEU's crown project, "Justice League," got slaughtered by critics and underperformed at the box office last year. Then Affleck stepped away from directing and writing duties for a "Batman" movie. (The project has since been taken over by Matt Reeves, the "Planet of the Apes" franchise director.) And suddenly "Aquaman" has been the center stage.

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