Batgirl had to be canceled because it "would have hurt DC," says DC Studios head Peter Safran.
In an interview with Variety (opens in new tab), Safran explained why the decision by Warner Bros. Discovery to shelve its standalone Batgirl movie was the right call. Since it's been some time since news of its cancelation spread, it's worth reminding that the movie had already been filmed when it was shelved, leading to "funeral screenings" for its cast and crew before ultimately being locked away for good.
"Batgirl's a character that inevitably we will include in our story," Safran said. "On the Batgirl front, it's not about late in the process of the film getting canceled. I saw the movie, and there are a lot of incredibly talented people in front of and behind the camera on that film.
That film was not releasable. I actually think that [president and CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery David] Zaslav and the team made a very bold and courageous decision to cancel it because it would have hurt DC. It would have hurt those people involved."
Despite these unflattering words, Safran said Batgirl had some top-tier talent behind the scenes and that "some people are already back in business with us." In particular, he noted that he'd recently been in contact with Batgirl directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, but didn't specify what they were talking about. He also mentioned Batgirl screenwriter Christina Hodson, but didn't go further into detail.
"As I said, a lot of talented people were involved, but the film just was not releasable. It would not have been able to compete in the theatrical marketplace; it was built for the small screen. So, again, I think it was not an easy decision, but they made the right decision by shelving it."
Batgirl was set to star Leslie Grace as Barbara Gordon, AKA Batgirl, and J.K. Simmons, Michael Keaton, and Brendan Fraser were also on the cast.
For more, check out our roundup of every new movie and show confirmed by James Gunn and DC Studios.