Fans and news outlets are still recovering from yesterday’s news that Batgirl has been shelved after being pretty much done. In a bombshell announcement WarnerMedia made the announcement that the company would be making a “strategic shift” for the DC universe focusing on blockbuster movies instead of straight to HBO Max. There had been rumblings that the budget for Batgirl had gone over budget and test audience screening we not well received. When the news broke yesterday a lot of outlets pointed to those issues as the reason for the cancellation. A spokesperson for Warner Bros gave a statement to THR that the decision to cancel Batgirl was due to a “strategic shift” by management, led Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav:
“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 [the also cancelled] Scoob! Holiday Haunt and their respective casts and we hope to collaborate with everyone again in the near future.”
As you can see the statement emphasized that Batgirl‘s cancellation had nothing to do with poor test screenings or budget issus. It was interesting in the statement that the spokesperson said the studio would want to work with the cast and crew again. It does sound that we will see Leslie Grace as Batgirl in the DC universe at some point in the future.
With the shift to bigger blockbuster movies the other project that may be in limbo is Blue Beetle starring Xolo Maridueña as the lead, Jaime Reyes aka Blue Beetle. This film is set up to be the first superhero film from either the MCU or DCEU to star a Latino character. Angel Manuel Soto was picked to direct the film with the screenplay for Blue Beetle written by Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer. The film is projected to be released on HBO Max in August 2023.
Blue Beetle was initially green-lit as a mid-budget film for HBO Max. The film’s budget hasn’t yet been disclosed and could potentially change with the new strategy. If it stays as a mid-budget film somewhere similar to Batgirl’s budget then that doesn’t bode well for the film. Warner Bros. could give the project a bigger budget to make it a theatrical event movie. Fingers crossed Blue Beetle sees a release, giving the DCEU its first major Latino character in the process.
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