Why Canceling DC’s Batgirl Movie Is A Huge Mistake

While it’s safe to say the live-action DC multiverse is still in a state of flux, it encountered one of its most surprising developments yet on Tuesday, when it was announced that Warner Bros. bat girl film, choosing not to release it theatrically or on their HBO Max streaming service. The project, which wrapped production earlier this year, would have finally brought Barbara Gordon/Batgirl (Leslie Grace) into the modern superhero blockbuster space, and would have been in the final stages of post-production. before being abandoned. The bat girl The news has sent shockwaves through social media, inspiring a flurry of hashtag campaigns and sparking a wide range of emotions among fans, many of whom see the decision to cancel an already completed film as surprising. While it’s unclear what the future might ultimately hold for Grace’s Batgirl, the decision to cancel her solo debut might be one of the most shocking decisions yet to be made in the world of cinema. Super hero.

Although Batgirl has made cinematic appearances in the past, the subject of her spotlight in the modern DC Universe has been the subject of speculation for some time. A bat girl The solo film has been in the works in one way or another since 2017, but didn’t really gain momentum until Grace, screenwriter Christina Hodson and directors Bilall Fallah and Adil El Arbi joined the project. these last years. To some extent it is easy to see why a bat girl the movie would be so hard to break, because the character had a legacy in DC Comics like no other. In the decades following its debut in the 1960s, who had hoped to boost the Adam West-led series’ female viewership? Batman television show, Barbara Gordon embarked on a profound journey. She went from Batman’s last carefree sidekick to her own heroine, got a second act as an Oracle computer expert after being crippled in Batman: The Killing Jokeand later formed the superheroine ensemble Birds of Prey.

Along the way, Barbara took on the nickname Batgirl and Oracle depending on the context, and inspired legions of fans in the process – especially those who were eager to see positive portrayals of characters with disabilities in the comics big. audience. She’s also arguably remained one of DC’s best-known female heroines, with projects like DC Superhero Girls continue to create new generations of fans. This notoriety and this importance at all levels gave rise to the idea of ​​a bat girl engaging solo film, whether premiering in theaters or streaming. When you pair that with Grace making history as an Afro-Latin actress in the lead role after a star performance in In the heightsand a pair of cult directors thanks to bad boys for life and Ms. Marvel, the film seemed to have even more potential. The film was also filled with a number of exciting firsts, including Ivory Aquino as Barbara’s openly transgender breakthrough best friend, Alysia Yeoh, and beloved actor Brendan Fraser continuing his career renaissance playing the main villain of the film, Firefly.

This potential may also be reflected in the various rumors that have surrounded bat girl over the past year, particularly in regards to the film’s possible importance in DC’s larger tapestry. Rumors had indicated that Jurnee Smollett’s Black Canary would be considered in the film, whether through Easter eggs or otherwise, and would theoretically set up his own solo project in development in the process. Other rumors have teased that Grace’s Batgirl may continue as part of the new live-action Justice League, alongside Sasha Calle’s upcoming portrayal of Supergirl. And even rumors aside, it’s already been confirmed that the film will feature the return of Michael Keaton’s iteration of Batman – apparently giving us the start of a live-action “Batfamily”, something that hasn’t. properly graced the silver screen in decades. Of course, there’s always a chance that Grace could eventually portray Batgirl in another upcoming DC project, but the fate of her solo movie would be on many fans’ minds.

A statement from Warner Bros. confirmed that bat girlThe cancellation was due to a “strategic shift in regards to the DC Universe and HBO Max,” with reports suggesting the film’s $90 million budget made it too expensive for a streaming-only release, but not quite on a larger scale. blockbuster to premiere in theaters. Depending on the legal details, we may never be able to see for ourselves if that’s the case – but when you look at the greatest tapestry of superhero movies, it’s still a surprising choice to make. Many of DC’s blockbuster movies in recent years had budgets comparable to bat girl‘s including Birds of preywhich has become a cult classic, and Shazam!, which is getting a sequel later this year. Even 2019 is out of continuity Jokerwhich went on to gross $1 billion at the box office and win multiple Oscars, had a much smaller budget than bat girl. As has been argued in all areas of superhero storytelling in recent yearslow-budget stories are necessary to keep things thriving – both to mix things up on a creative level and to keep the proverbial “bubble” from bursting.

Beyond, cancellation bat girl after production wraps, sets a shocking precedent — one that has already had fans worried for virtually every other project DC has in the works. Even the fate of upcoming theatrical films like next year’s blue beetle The film, which had already strayed from an HBO Max release before production began, is now being questioned by some fans. Yes, Warner Bros. Discovery is obviously in a period of transition following its landmark merger earlier this year, and reports have indicated that they are still determining the future of their live-action DC Universe. But the fact that these decisions have a direct impact on the long-awaited creative work of films like bat girl probably doesn’t convey confidence in the eyes of some fans, especially when other superhero franchises have recently guaranteed years of storytelling that fans didn’t even know they wanted.

From the second it was announced it was in the works, it was clear that bat girlThe on-screen journey of would be as disjointed and surprising as its titular character, which only made the news of its cancellation all the more disheartening. Regardless of how things for the character (and for the wider DC Universe) shake out, one thing is clear – it’s a decision that will likely remain a turning point for the superhero media landscape for some time to come. .

What do you think of Warner Bros. canceling the bat girl film? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

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