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'Batman v. Superman' moves release date to avoid 'Captain America'

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Warner Bros. schedules nine new DC superhero films to follow

Batman v. Superman is arriving a little bit sooner than previously planned: according to The Wrap and Variety, its release date is being moved forward about a month and a half to March 25th, 2016, just up from its previous date of May 6th. Many had assumed that the movie would eventually be moved, as it would have been facing off against Marvel's third Captain America film had it stayed on May 6th — and given Marvel's record at the box office, Warner Bros. likely had little interest in putting up a fight. That's especially reinforced by Guardians of the Galaxy's box office success last weekend, bringing in the highest figures of the summer on a relatively unknown property.

Coming March 25th in 3D

The Wrap also reports that Batman v. Superman will be released in 3D, though it's unclear if it's being shot natively in 3D or being post-converted, as Man of Steel was. The film, directed by Zack Snyder, has already had its release date shuffled around before. It was initially planned for a release next July, but production was ultimately pushed back. Filming is now well underway though, and videos are starting to leak out showing some of the action. Fortunately for fans, Snyder isn't being as secretive about his star-studded property as other directors have been, and he's released photos of Ben Affleck as BatmanHenry Cavill as Supermanand Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman.

The huge roster of heroes appearing in this movie also means that it's one that Warner Bros. won't have to worry all that much about getting people to pay attention to. Marvel showed earlier this year with the second Captain America that blockbuster movies can succeed outside of the summer months, and Warner Bros. certainly has the right material to repeat that — even if it's being viewed as the loser of this immediate battle.

Looking forward, Warner Bros. has a lot more planned in the DC universe after this. The Wrap reports that it's scheduled release dates already for two DC movies every year from 2016 through 2020. Which heroes those will focus on, however, is still unannounced. Regardless of who, if the studio follows through with its plan to release that many superhero films, there's clearly a much bigger showdown brewing than the one between Batman and Superman.