Batgirl cancelled: Warner Bros considering DC restructure to rival success of Marvel
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Chief executive David Zaslav said the company would focus on the “quality” of upcoming blockbusters in order to “protect the DC brand”.
It comes shortly after the company announced it would be scrapping its upcoming Batgirl movie, filmed entirely in Glasgow, five months before the scheduled 2022 release.
The directors of Batgirl said they are “saddened and shocked” that Warner Bros has scrapped the film months before it was due to be released.
Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah shared a joint statement on Instagram saying they wished fans could have the “opportunity to see and embrace the final film themselves”.
Leslie Grace, who starred as Batgirl in the now axed Warner Brothers film took to Instagram to thank fans for their support after the studio killed plans for a release of the film in theaters or on HBO Max
She wrote: ““Querida familia! On the heels of the recent news about our movie ‘Batgirl,’ I am proud of the love, hard work and intention all of our incredible cast and tireless crew put into this film over 7 months in Scotland,”
DC films still due to hit theatres include sequels to Aquaman, starring Jason Momoa, Shazam! as well as Black Adam and The Flash, the latter starring Ezra Miller.
Zaslav made the comments during the Warner Bros Q2 earnings report on Thursday, according to US media.
“You look at Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman — these are brands that are known everywhere in the world,” he said.
“We have done a reset. We’ve restructured the business where we are going to focus, where there is going to be a team with a 10-year plan focusing just on DC.
“We believe we can build a much more sustainable business.”
It comes after Marvel boss Kevin Feige announced extensive plans, stretching into 2026, for the next stages of the Marvel Comic Universe (MCU).
In a showcase at the recent San Diego Comic Con, Feige revealed details of the upcoming Phases Five and Six of the MCU, which are set to feature the return of popular superheroes.
“(DC’s plan is) very similar to the structure Alan Horn, Bob Iger and Kevin Feige put together very effectively at Disney,” Zaslav said the earnings report.
“We think we can build a much stronger, sustainable growth business out of DC.
“As part of that, we are going to focus on quality. We are not going to release any film before it’s ready… DC is something we can make better.”
Batgirl, due to star Hollywood A-listers Michael Keaton, Brendan Fraser, JK Simmons and Leslie Grace, was scrapped after test screenings and Warner Bros say it will no longer appear in cinemas or on streaming service HBO Max.
Production of the Batgirl film reportedly cost an estimated 70 million dollars (£57.6 million) and the film was scheduled for release in late 2022.