Batgirl Was Killed By A Move Away From Streaming And Book Balancing

Batgirl Was Killed By A Move Away From Streaming And Book Balancing
Image: Warner Bros.

Warner Bros. has finally made a statement about the permanent cancellation of two multi-million dollar projects, Batgirl and Scoob! Holiday Haunt. Essentially, according to Deadline, the decision comes from a desire to re-energize the DC Extended Universe, and some of the character reveals and plot points in Batgirl didn’t line up with the larger theatrical strategy for the comics franchise.

Pivoting away from the strategy that former Warner Bros executive Jason Kilar attempted to push during the pandemic, the new leadership at Warner Bros. has decided that growing streaming subscribers is no longer a major focus for the company, stating that stakeholders prefer to see theatrical profits than subscription numbers. Essentially the company scrapped both films in order to help balance the books, a decision that execs have called “purchase accounting.”

The entire thing is a baffling talk-around that seems like an entirely reductive ‘cut our losses’ strategy that devalues the work of artists that have spent a lot of time and effort on these films. Batgirl also had a massive slate of talent backing it up starring Leslie Grace, J.K. Simmons, Brendan Fraser, and Michael Keaton.

While the studio has said that this is an unusual decision, it does throw some people for a loop. Besides the optics of cancelling the Latina-led film, the decision also has caused some concern over the fate of films like Blue Beetle and Black Canary, both of which feel to be on the same level of production as Batgirl — and not really designed to “compete with DC’s massive tentpole blockbusters.”

Warner Bros Discovery released this statement, from the original article: “The decision to not release Batgirl reflects our leadership’s strategic shift as it relates to the DC universe and HBO Max. Leslie Grace is an incredibly talented actor and this decision is not a reflection of her performance. We are incredibly grateful to the filmmakers of Batgirl and Scoob! Holiday Haunt and their respective casts and we hope to collaborate with everyone again in the near future.”

Comments

  • “Besides the optics of cancelling the Latina-led film”

    I’m a little confused here… What’s the purpose of this statement? Are you suggesting the race of the lead actress/character had a part to play with the cancellation?

    By all accounts, according to people who have claimed to have been privvy to a private screening, the movie is a dumpster fire, and WB, knowing that it won’t make bank at the cinema, decided to cut their loses.

    • It’s a US author, so it has to at least once imply that there might be some problematic conspiracy afoot.

      Pretty sure they have a quota for that shit at this point.

      • Here I was naively thinking it was just information, now I know it’s part of the woke agenda conspiracy.

        • I get all my facts from the random assertions of anonymous posters in the comments sections of computer gaming websites too.

          • As if getting your facts from the random assertions of a named author is any different. Though you bring up a very good point, as there is indeed an incredibly important difference between the anonymous commenters and the majority of named Kotaku authors.

            Namely that the anonymous commenters aren’t the so-called professional journalists who have repeatedly abused their position, running about inserting personal political and ideological beliefs or commentary into places where it isn’t even relevant.

            I mean in a twisted way that sort of sheer fuckin’ arrogance is actually kind of impressive. To do things like that, and even intentionally lie as some Kotaku authors have absolutely been caught doing in the past, and then also still put your real name to it as if you’re not an absolute disgrace to the profession.

            I guess you wouldn’t have to worry though, because it’s the very same profession that you can rely on countless fools to use as a shield to defend you with as they scream, ‘Oh my god, they’re just doing their job!’ at anyone who dares criticise.

        • Well that didn’t take long at all.

          The “They’re just a reporting a fact, its their job!” line is some cop-out bullshit. Even more so when it’s evident I wasn’t the only one who found the information bizarrely relayed.

          But yeah, that whole defense falls apart when you look at how the job is apparently VERY different if you’re a US author, compared to the AU authors where that sort of ‘information’ tends to be relayed in a far less implicative manner.

          The US Kotaku authors do this all the goddamn time, and I’m far from the only one who mentions it. But sure, they’re ‘Just doing their job!’, anyone who comments about it is just imagining it… Yet somehow only for articles written by US authors.

        • Pray tell, what “optics” can there be in regards to “cancelling” a film, while specifically making mention of the race of it’s lead?

          If there is nothing behind it, it is literally a redundant point to make.

    • LOL yep. Half expected some line like that to have been thrown in there of course… US Kotaku and all.

  • If the movie was good and expected to make money why cancel it? Surely having a successful movie generate rwvenue would be better, than a tax write down?

  • Wokeness is what killed the movie.
    David Zaslav shit canned the movie once he found out that Henry Cavill’s Superman was going to be killed off screen in Black Adam and Supergirl was going to take his place. Then in Batgirl she ws supposed to take Batman’s place moving forward and they planned to kill Michael Keaton off.
    Flashpoint will is also likely be reshot top to bottom.
    In Zaslovs words: “If it’s woke or shit, it’s gone.”

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