Since 2007, Warner Bros. has been producing an ever-expanding collection of direct-to-video animated films based around DC Comics characters. For more than a decade, the series – which falls under the banner of DC Universe Animated Original Movies – has been responsible for a wealth of comic book films featuring the likes of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, amongst others.

Warner Bros’. release schedule for DC Universe Animated Original Movies is pretty consistent and includes two-to-three films a year. Some of the movies follow the same continuity, some do their own thing, but collectively they offer an eclectic mix of feature films.

But if you’re new to this series, where do you start? What films are connected, what films are standalone stories, and what else should you know about the series?

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Today I’ll answer these questions. This post will present a list of all the DC Universe Animated Original Movies, alongside various viewing orders.

I will keep it updated, to include all of the new movies that appear in this series. As you will see, there is a lot.

But before I get to all that, here are a couple of things you should know:

  • The voice cast varies from movie-to-movie
  • Some actors play different versions of the same character (i.e. Kevin Conroy voices Batman a number of times, but he’s not always playing the same Batman)
  • Some of the movies are connected, some are not

Oh and if you’ve just stumbled upon this post via Google, you should know that I’ve created this post as an extension to my previous post, ‘What is the best order to watch the Batman animated movies?‘ If you want to focus on the Caped Crusader, you might find that post helpful too, as it covers a huge amount of animated Batman features.

Right, let’s get started.

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Production order

Image: ©Warner Bros.
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OK, in order to explore the different continuities and viewing orders within the DC Universe Animated Original Movies series, it is best to take a look at all of the movies as a whole. The following is a production order list of every film released since 2007.

  • Superman: Doomsday (2007)
  • Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)
  • Batman: Gotham Knight (2008)
  • Wonder Woman (2009)
  • Green Lantern: First Flight (2009)
  • Superman/Batman: Public Enemies (2009)
  • Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (2010)
  • Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010)
  • Under the Red Hood (2010)
  • All-Star Superman (2011)
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (2011)
  • Batman: Year One (2011)
  • Justice League: Doom (2012)
  • Superman vs. The Elite (2012)
  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part 1 (2012)
  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part 2 (2013)
  • Superman: Unbound (2013)
  • Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (2013)
  • Justice League: War (2014)
  • Son of Batman (2014)
  • Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014)
  • Justice League: Throne of Atlantis (2015)
  • Batman vs. Robin (2015)
  • Justice League: Gods and Monsters (2015)
  • Batman: Bad Blood (2016)
  • Justice League vs. Teen Titans (2016)
  • Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
  • Justice League Dark (2017)
  • Teen Titans: The Judas Contract (2017)
  • Batman and Harley Quinn (2017)
  • Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (2018)
  • Suicide Squad: Hell to Pay (2018)
  • Constantine: City of Demons (2018)*
  • The Death of Superman (2018)
  • Reign of the Supermen (2019)
  • Justice League vs. the Fatal Five (2019)
  • Batman Hush (2019)
  • Wonder Woman: Bloodlines (2019)
  • Superman: Red Son (2020)
  • Justice League Dark: Apokolips War (2020)
  • Superman: The Man of Tomorrow (2020)
  • Batman: Death in the Family (2020)
  • Batman: Soul of the Dragon (2021)
  • Justice Society: World War II (2021)
  • Batman: Long Halloween – Part 1 (2021)
  • Batman: Long Halloween – Part 2 (2021)

*Constantine: City of Demons isn’t an official DC Universe Animated Original Movie, however it is connected to the series as a sort-of sequel to Justice League Dark.

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Shorts:

In addition to the feature films listed above, Warner Bros. has also released a small collection of shorts. These shorts can (more or less) be watched in any order.

  • The Spectre (2010)
  • Jonah Hex (2010)
  • Green Arrow (2010)
  • Superman/Shazam! The Return of Black Adam (2010)
  • Catwoman (2011)
  • Nightwing and Robin (2015)

OK, so that’s the production order of all the films, now let’s break them down into potential viewing orders.

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Miscellaneous

Image: ©Warner Bros.
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The beauty of DC Universe Animated Original Movies is that the films can be watched as standalone tales if desired. However, some of the titles share continuity, while a number have no attachments at all.

The following films are all unconnected tales that can be watched in any order. Some of these stories are adaptations of iconic comic book storylines, such as Year One and Flashpoint, while Assault on Arkham is loosely connected to the Batman: Arkham gaming series.

  • Superman: Doomsday (2007)
  • Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)
  • Batman: Gotham Knight (2008)
  • Wonder Woman (2009)
  • Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (2010)
  • Under the Red Hood (2010)
  • All-Star Superman (2011)
  • Batman: Year One (2011)**
  • Justice League: Doom (2012)
  • Superman vs. The Elite (2012)
  • Superman: Unbound (2013)
  • Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014)
  • Justice League: Gods and Monsters (2015)
  • Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
  • Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (2018)
  • Superman: Red Son (2020)
  • Superman: The Man of Tomorrow (2020)
  • Batman: Death in the Family (2020)
  • Batman: Soul of the Dragon (2021)
  • Justice Society: World War II (2021)

**The Catwoman short (see list of shorts above) is linked to Batman: Year One, so is best watched after viewing the film.

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Green Lantern

Image: ©Warner Bros.

Green Lantern appears in a lot of DC Universe Animated Original Movies, quite often with Nathan Fillion providing the voice. However, there are two GL movies that are connected to each other, but are not connected to any other films featuring the character.

  • Green Lantern: First Flight (2009)
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (2011)
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Superman/Batman

Image: ©Warner Bros.

From two Green Lantern flicks, to two Superman/Batman movies. These two films are based on the Superman/Batman comics of the early ’00s and are connected to each other, just not connected to any of the other movies.

  • Superman/Batman: Public Enemies (2009)
  • Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010)

Tim Daly and Kevin Conroy provide voice-over duties for the Man of Steel and the Caped Crusader, respectively.

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The New 52

Image: ©Warner Bros.
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And now onto the longest run of continuity within the DC Universe Animated Original Movies collection, The New 52. This run of movies shares a loose continuity, although some of the voice actors change from time-to-time.

To date, this series of DC animated movies is by far the most intwined. So, if you are looking to go on a bit of a journey with some of the characters, these are the films for you.

  • Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (2013)
  • Justice League: War (2014)
  • Son of Batman (2014)
  • Justice League: Throne of Atlantis (2015)***
  • Batman vs. Robin (2015)
  • Batman: Bad Blood (2016)
  • Justice League vs. Teen Titans (2016)
  • Justice League Dark (2017)
  • Teen Titans: The Judas Contract (2017)
  • Suicide Squad: Hell to Pay (2018)
  • Constantine: City of Demons (2018)
  • The Death of Superman (2018)
  • Reign of the Supermen (2019)
  • Batman Hush (2019)
  • Wonder Woman: Bloodlines (2019)
  • Justice League Dark: Apokolips War (2020)

***The short, Nightwing and Robin is connected to Justice League: Throne of Atlantis.

If you’re looking for a good run of DC movies that share continuity then go for the films listed above.

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The Dark Knight Returns

Image: ©Warner Bros.

This is pretty obvious, but just to make things clear there are two Batman films that follow on from each other:

  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part 1 (2012)
  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part 2 (2013)

These two movies are based on the iconic comic book storyline of the same name, by Frank Miller. They are very, very good.

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Bruce Timm

Image: ©Warner Bros.
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Now for a couple of movies that are a callback to one of the greatest eras of DC animation. The two films are:

  • Batman and Harley Quinn (2017)
  • Justice League vs. the Fatal Five (2019)

These films are loosely based on characters who appeared in the DC Animated Universe (DCAU) – aka the universe from producer Bruce Timm, that began in 1992 with Batman: The Animated Series. The films share similar designs, characterisations and voice actors, although they are not 100% part of that continuity.

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Batman: Long Halloween

Image: ©DC Comics

And finally, two movies which are based on the fan-favourite comic, Batman: The Long Halloween.

  • Batman: Long Halloween – Part 1 (2021)
  • Batman: Long Halloween – Part 2 (2021)
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I hope this post has provided a little clarity on the viewing order of the DC Universe Animated Original Movies. As you can see, there are a lot of films but they can be split up into subsections if desired, or they can be watched as a whole.

For me, the best viewing order is production order. I simply treat all of these films as one large multiverse and then I dive right in!

But pick what works best for you. So, if you only want to watch Justice League films then just watch the Justice League movies. Same with Wonder Woman, Superman and so on.

Oh, and FYI, if you’re a fan of Batman – which I guess you probably are if you like DC animated movies – then you might like to know that Batman: The Definitive History has been published and it is one awesome book! I know, because I picked up a copy as soon as it was available.

The 246-page book looks at the entire history of the Caped Crusader, including his comic book tales, his movie career, and everything in between. Batman: The Definitive History is widely available, including from Amazon UK.

Read more:

Disclaimer: I earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article.

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