There has been a lot of confusion and sadness over the recent bombshell news of Batgirl getting canceled. In the last couple of days since that announcement a lot of DC fans have been left asking, why Warner Brothers Discovery wouldn’t release a film that was so close to completion? On Thursday, during the WB investor call, CEO David Zaslav provided more clarity on the whole situation. Batgirl was scrapped because it didn’t fit with the company’s strategic approach to maximize secure financial return.
Other films included in the conversation surrounding Batgirl were the recently canned movies Scoob: Holiday Haunt and Wonder Twins. When specifically talking about DC Zaslav said, “The objective is to grow the DC brand and the characters, but just as importantly, to protect the DC brand.” He would continue on saying, “We’re not going to put a movie out unless we believe in it, particularly with DC.” On that same note, Zaslav also said, “We’re not going to release a film before it’s ready.”
This is all consistent with what has been reported over the last number of months and particularly the last couple of days. Zaslav is trying to fix the mess that was left by the former heads of WB who infamously implemented the same-day-and-date release strategy on HBO Max during the height of the pandemic. That’s a financial mistake WB is still paying for today which has made Zaslav have a heavy focus on theatrically released films. Batgirl, Scoob 2, and Wonder Twins during their conception were never intended to go to theaters. This was despite many speculating that Batgirl would given that Blue Beetle made the jump from streaming to theatrical just a few months back.
Where the future of the DCEU was concerned there was a lot of talk about having a ten-year plan, in the vein of Marvel. They would also be trying to course correct some questionable universe choices made by the previous regime at WB. In terms of upcoming films like Black Adam, Shazam: Fury of the Gods, and The Flash, Zaslav expressed his excitement for those projects during the call.
DC Fans have been through the emotional ringer the last couple of days. While it makes all the financial sense in the world to move on from films like Batgirl, that wound is still very fresh. As fans, it’s going to take some time to heal from it, and we just have to be patient with WB. Things like structure is definitely something that could benefit the DCEU going forward. It doesn’t seem like it right now, but once films like The Flash finally come out and paint a clearer picture of the universe going forward, hopefully DC fans can be at peace.
For now, all we can do is rewatch the DCEU on HBO Max and prepare ourselves for some of our favorite heroes to return to the big screen once more.