Fans were upset last week when Warner Bros. decided to scrap Batgirl, without plans to release it in any shape or form. Movie experts and DC fans haven’t stopped discussing the shocking cancelation of this project ever since, but why did Warners decide to go down this road?
The official statement announcing Batgirl’s cancelation explained it “reflects our leadership’s strategic shift as it relates to the DC universe and HBO Max.” Batgirl was supposed to stream on HBO Max from the get-go, but why didn’t the studio simply release it in theatres as they shift their focus to big theatrical event films?
Warner Bros. already spent $90 million on Leslie Grace-starer and releasing it in theatres would mean spending even more money on promotion. This didn’t seem like a financially sound option following the film’s disappointing test screenings. At least that seems to be the way they’re trying to spin the story, but several outlets reported that Batgirl was met with a similar audience response to It and Shazam!
Passionate fans aren’t buying the story that Batgirl’s audience response was that bad—after all, Warner Bros. gave us such critical bombs as Suicide Squad and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. It’s most likely they decided to ditch it because they would receive a tax break if they never monetized the project, which was the most financially sound option.