Admittedly, “It’s the one with Aquaman and a huge wave” was not the most helpful way to try and describe a photo to James Wan.

“There are so many pictures of Aquaman and a huge wave!” the director rightly replied after we asked for some context about this new photo, below, from Warner Bros. from his upcoming D.C. action-adventure film:

AquamanJASON MOMOA as Aquaman
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures/© DC Comics

Fans have seen similar images in the film’s trailer, which shows a giant tidal wave crashing into the coastline.

So what’s going on here? Wan gave some clues.

“The context of that photo is basically the Atlantic coastline is being hit by tidal waves and it’s not actually an attack from Atlantis but a warning sign of what’s to come,” he says. “It’s basically a message from King Orm [Patrick Wilson] and he’s throwing our warships and waste back onto the land.”

As fans know, Aquaman (Jason Momoa) is facing off against his half-brother King Orm over leadership of Atlantis. Orm wants to declare war on the surface world for polluting the Seven Seas.

And if you think that tidbit reveals a major bit of plot, Wan assures it doesn’t, really. In fact, there’s a lot more you haven’t seen.

“The trailer and images don’t really do it justice,” Wan says. “The crazy part is there’s so much movie, what’s out there has barely scratched the surface.” (So to speak).

In the film’s extended trailer (which you can watch above), we also get a long look at a rooftop chase sequence where Wan gets to use some of his stylistic directing chops that he honed in Furious 7.

“That’s the crazy thing is that one long take shot that everybody seems excited about in the trailer, that’s only half the shot,” Wan says. “And it doesn’t have the context of how it comes to play. So hopefully in the actual movie it’s more enjoyable because you’ll have context.”

Aquaman opens in theaters Dec. 21.

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