Batgirl Directors Are ‘Shocked and Saddened’ Over Groundbreaking Cancelation

In an unprecedented move, Batgirl, the upcoming DCEU film starring Leslie Grace, J.K. Simmons, Brendan Fraser, and Michael Keaton, was canceled yesterday, Aug. 3rd, by Warner Bros. As a result, the company will lose the nearly $90 million budget as the project finished filming and was almost complete with post-production.

Directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah were reportedly in Morocco for El Arbi’s wedding when the news was announced, hearing about the cancelation while the information was breaking all over the internet. The filmmakers were understandably shocked and devastated by the decision and have released an official statement via Instagram. The message reads:

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“We are saddened and shocked by the news. We still can’t believe it. As directors, it is critical that our work be shown to audiences, and while the film was far from finished, we wish that fans all over the world would have had the opportunity to see and embrace the final film themselves. Maybe one day they will insha’Allah. Our amazing cast and crew did a tremendous job and worked so hard to bring Batgirl to life. We are forever grateful to have been part of that team. It was a dream to work with such fantastic actors like Michael Keaton, JK Simmons, Brendan Fraser, Jacob Scipio, Corey Johnson, Rebecca Front and especially the great Leslie Grace, who portrayed Batgirl with so much passion, dedication and humanity. In any case, as huge fans of Batman since we were little kids, it was a privilege and even an honor to have been part of the DCEU, even if it was for a brief moment. Batgirl for life.”

Although the directors claim the film was far from finished, it’s still difficult to understand how Warner Bros. could scrap a project so far through development with a relatively high budget. Unfortunately, it’s unlikely that Batgirl fans will ever see the ultimately canceled movie. The Instagram post can be seen below.

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A post shared by Adil El Arbi (@adilelarbi)

Batgirl May Have Been Canceled For Tax Incentives

Michael Keaton/Instagram

Despite the $90 million budget going down the drain, the film may have been canceled now to receive specific tax incentives, according to reports from Variety. Warner Bros. execs must have believed Batgirl would be a huge flop, as they still needed between $30 and $50 million to market the movie domestically, with tens of millions more to roll out the film worldwide. According to their report, the studio believed shelving the film was the most financially viable option,

“Warner Bros. will almost certainly take a tax-write down, seen internally as the most financially sound way to recoup the costs. It could justify that by chalking it up to a post-merger change of strategy. Doing so, however, would mean that Warner Bros. cannot monetize either movie — no HBO Max debut, no sale to another studio.”

Since Warner Bros. can’t release the movie in any capacity, there won’t be any #ReleaseTheSnyderCut campaign for the film, or not a successful one at least. So, unfortunately, it’s highly unlikely that anyone outside the crew and executives will see any form of Batgirl anytime soon.