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Batgirl Was Canceled, CEO Says, Because He Must Protect DC Characters

Shots have already been fired at Batgirlthis time from the top of the business that just canceled the superheroine’s stand-alone film.

The movie, starring Leslie Grace because the crimefighter, was abruptly shelved this week despite being amid post-production, resulting in an uproar online as fans fear they could never start to see the nearly finished movie. On an earnings call Thursday, Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav was unapologetic concerning the decision.

Our objective would be to grow the DC brand, to cultivate the DC characters, but additionally our job would be to protect the DC brand, he said.

That has been in reaction to a question about why the Batgirl movie was killed so late along the way. Unnamed sources have said in a few media reports that studio executives weren’t pleased with the direction of the film and were unwilling to get more to repair it, choosing instead to have a tax write-off by abandoning it.

Zaslav had not been quite that blunt in his call with analysts and investors, but he was adament that he wouldn’t normally abide the release of a movie from the DC franchise he felt undermined the brand. Our ambition would be to bring Warner back also to produce great, top quality films, he said. Once we consider the opportunities that people have broadly, DC is on he the surface of the list for all of us. You look at Superman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman. They are brands which are known all around the world. The opportunity to drive those around the globe with an excellent story is really a big chance of us.

He said DC had been tasked with devising a longterm plan that echoed the successful, interlinked movies of DC’s longtime rival Marvel. We’ve done a reset, Zaslav said. We’ve restructured the business enterprise, where we will focus, where you will see a team with a 10-year plan focusing just on DC. It is rather like the structure that [former Disney studio chief] Alan Horn and, and [former Disney CEO] Bob Iger come up with very effectively with Kevin Feige at Disney.

Feige, the president of Marvel Studios, has long overshadowed Warner’s cinematic superhero franchise. As counter-programming to the linked storytelling of Marvel, DC helped pioneer multiverse storytellingthe same heroes depicted by different actors, with different tones and story arcs, in a variety of Television shows and movies. Marvel has embraced the multiverse in its storytelling, drawing in actors from different Spider-Man franchises in Spider-Man: NO CHANCE Home.

But that approach for Marvel employs ten years of establishing a foundation of canon. DC, however, hasn’t established clear continuity in its movie offerings. The closest it came was the Snyderverse group of movies from filmmaker Zack Snyder, which spun off Wonder Woman and Aquaman, among other titles. Recently, Warner Bros. has tried to go beyond that, with Joaquin Phoenix‘s Oscar-winning submit the stand-alone Joker movie, and Robert Pattinson’s ultra-dark grown-up undertake the Caped Crusader in The Batman, which aren’t linked to one another.

We believe that we could create a longterm, stronger, sustainable growth business out of DC, Zaslav said. Within that, we will concentrate on quality. We’re not likely to release any film before it’s ready. We’re not likely to to push out a film merely to create a [financial] quarter. The focus will be, just how do we make each one of these films generally, as good as it is possible? But DC is a thing that we think we’re able to make smarter.

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