‘Batgirl’: Kevin Feige, James Gunn and Edgar Wright Show Support for the Directors!!!

Amid the recent Warner Bros. Discovery calamity, including, but not limited to, the cancellation of the DC Extended Universe‘s Batgirl, so much remains up in the air for fans and creators. Between the shelving of post-production films and the discussion regarding the HBO Max and Discovery+ merger, the integrity of these conglomerates as far as their responsibility to both their creators and their consumers does comes into question. In the days following, Variety reports, a number of directors reached out to Batgirl filmmakers Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah with support after the unusual decision.

While rumors floated that the nixing of El Arbi and Fallah‘s $90 million Batgirl on August 2 was due to unfinished and inadequate quality, an official statement was released by a Warner Bros. spokesperson confirming the cancellation was due to an unfortunate conflict with the company’s “strategic shift.” Purportedly, Batgirl does not align with the direction they will be taking the DCEU and HBO Max, which intends to not only distance itself from the SynderVerse, but will be converging with Discovery+ in the coming year. According to WBD CEO David Zaslav, the company is “not going to launch a movie to make a quarter and we’re not going to put a movie out unless we believe in it.”

Within days high-profile creators reached out to the filmmakers, including President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige, revealed El Arbi on his Instagram. The co-directors previously worked under Feige to helm both the premiere episode and the finale of the Disney+ series Ms. Marvel. The studio president wrote:

“My friends, I had to reach and let you know we are all thinking about you both. Because of the wonderful news about the wedding (congrats!) and the disappointing news about ‘Batgirl.’ Very proud of you guys are all the amazing work you do and particularly ‘Ms. Marvel’ of course! Can’t wait to see what is next for you. Hope to see you soon.”

On his Instagram, El Arbi thanked everyone for the messages of support, adding, “Shoutout directors Edgar Wright and James Gunn, your kind words and experience mean a lot and help us through this difficult period.” Edgar Wright, director of films like Baby Driver and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, offered kind words after his own personal experience with a late-project drop, having worked on Marvel‘s Ant-Man for years before stepping away due to creative differences. Likewise, another Marvel alum who made the cross to the DCEU, James Gunn, who directed the Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy, reached out in solidarity.

In their own personal statement, the co-directors lamented that “As directors, it is critical that our work be shown to audiences,” and that they hope that someday fans will have the opportunity to see the final product. However, with Zaslav‘s Batgirl write-downs and his intentions of reshaping the DCEU with a “10-year plan focusing just on DC,” that he says is “very similar to the structure that Alan Horne and Bob Iger put together very effectively with Kevin Feige at Disney,” it’s unlikely the film will escape its shadowy confines. No longer necessary to bridge the Zack Snyder gap, and considered too expensive for streaming, Zaslav says, “DC is something that we think we could make better and we’re focused on it now.” Instead, the superhero films will be strictly theatrical releases, following the footsteps of big-budget blockbusters like the upcoming Black Adam and Shazam! Fury of the Gods, as well as The Flash, starring the increasingly problematic Ezra Miller, which Zaslav deems “terrific” and one of the “great DC films.”

Shazam! Fury of the Gods, starring Zachary Levi, hits theaters December 21.


via Collider

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