Warner Bros has decided to cancel the Batgirl movie.
The studio seemed to be moving ahead with more DC Comics productions for their future slate. In addition to the two DC Comics films coming out this year (Black Adam and Shazam! Fury of the Gods), Warner Bros. is looking to continue on with directors James Gunn and Matt Reeves continuing films and TV series with DC Comics characters. But not every production seems as though it will proceed.
Warner Bros. recently announced that it is shelving the Batgirl movie, according to Variety. The film would center around Barbara Gordon, the daughter of Commissioner Gordon, taking on the role of the vigilante Batgirl. The movie was being directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah (Ms. Marvel, Bad Boys For Life) and would star Leslie Grace (In The Heights) as the titular hero.
The production for Batgirl cost $90 million and it was already in post-production. The film was intended to debut on HBO Max as part of a new series of DC Comics films produced specifically for the smaller screen. Now it won’t be on any screen as the studio has no plans to release this film on any platform.
The reasoning WB states for this removal of Batgirl from their release seems to be a change in marketing DC Comics films. The studio seems to want more DC Comics films to be hitting theaters instead of HBO Max. There have also been some reports that Batgirl tested poorly, possibly leading to WB abandoning the Batgirl feature film.
With the Batgirl movie being axed, this could signal the end of other DC Comics productions intended for HBO Max. This includes adaptations of the comic book heroes Blue Beetle and Green Lantern. It seems rather ironic that Warner Bros would go this route considering that 2021 was the year they wanted to focus on HBO Max more. Zack Snyder’s Justice League debuted exclusively on HBO Max and the DC Comics movies Wonder Woman 1984 and The Suicide Squad would debut in theaters and on HBO Max at the same time. The hybrid model did not involve the consent of the filmmakers for this release model.
DC Comics still has a number of ongoing TV series on HBO Max. These shows include Harley Quinn, Doom Patrol, and Young Justice. It should also be noted that Warner Bros’s animation division is still producing direct-to-video DC Comics animated films and doesn’t seem to be scaling back on those either.