The DCEU fans have already gotten a glance at Amber Heard’s Mera in the initial trailer for Aquaman 2. However, it led fans to speculate that her role in the movie is seemingly redundant due to all the controversy surrounding her personal life.
It’s undeniable that her role in the film will generate significant discussion, given the surrounding circumstances. Recently, amid all the speculation, Aquaman andtge Lost Kingdom director has set the record straight on why he cut Mera’s screen time in the sequel.
James Wan clarifies Mera’s reduced role unrelated to Amber Heard’s life
Director James Wan has clarified why he reduced the starring role of the Zombieland actress from the sequel to DC’s highest-grossing movie.
Wan spoke to Empire Magazine (via The Direct) and elaborated on the Aquaman 2 storyline, emphasizing that it will be an “Arthur and Orm-centric Buddy” movie, where he highlighted the relevance of paring down Amber Heard’s role in the upcoming aquatic adventure.
“It’s fair that [Heard] said that [about the character being pared down], But this was always my plan. From the start, I pitched that the first film would be a ‘Romancing The Stone ‘-type thing — an action-adventure romantic comedy — while the second would be an outright buddy comedy. I wanted to do ‘Tango & Cash!'”
In the interview, Wan sympathized with Heard’s frustration for streamlining her scenes in the movie while also reiterating that Mera’s diminished role in the film had little to do with Heard’s personal life.
Aquaman 2 will be an Arthur and Orm buddy movie
In a previous interview with Entertainment Weekly, Wan already mentioned his reason for giving prominence to the Atlantis brothers in the upcoming sequel.
“I always pitched this to everyone from the get-go. The first Aquaman was Arthur and Mera’s journey. The second movie was always going to be Arthur and Orm. So, the first was a romance action-adventure movie, and the second one was a bromance action-adventure movie. We’ll leave it at that.”
As per the interview, during the defamation trial against her ex-husband Johnny Depp, Heard testified that her role in Aquaman had been “pared down”. She claimed that Warner Bros. “didn’t want to include [her]” in the film due to the result of Depp’s alleged efforts to tarnish her reputation.
Amber Heard’s role in sequel in jeopardy over chemistry concerns
Meanwhile, different reports from Variety suggest that Amber Heard was close to being let go from the sequel. However, the studio’s concerns weren’t primarily related to her defamation trial but rather her lack of chemistry with the leading actor, Jason Momoa.
Furthermore, it is reported that on the day of the trailer’s release, the fans recovered a document from the trial that surfaced on Reddit. “Jason said he wanted me fired,” the notes say. “Jason drunk — late on set. Dressing like Johnny. Has all the rings too.” Momoa allegedly imitated Johnny Depp and advocated for Heard’s removal from her role.
Additionally, reports claimed that her ex-boyfriend, Elon Musk, intervened on her behalf. He reportedly sent a strongly worded letter to the studio and essentially threatened them with legal action if they were to fire her. The article states, “Warner Bros. caved and moved forward with Heard.”
In the upcoming movie, Heard’s Mera will become a mother to the new heir of Atlantis, and the baby’s appearance has already been confirmed in the sequel’s first trailer.
James Wan’s Aquaman 2 will be the final entry in the epic DCEU. And the franchise will see its fresh start with James Gunn and Peter Safran’s new universe.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will debut in theaters on December 20.