In a move that shocked Hollywood observers for the amount of money wasted, Warner Bros. Discovery announced Tuesday that it is shelving all plans to release the nearly finished film Batgirl, starring actress Leslie Grace.
The film had originally been planned with a $75 million budget that had rocketed up to $90 million, due to COVID-related delays. It was directed by the duo Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, whose credits include the 2020 Will Smith and Martin Lawrence vehicle Bad Boys for Life as well as the recent Disney+ series Ms. Marvel.
In a statement reported by multiple media sources, a Warner Bros. spokesperson wrote: “The decision to not release Batgirl reflects our leadership’s strategic shift as it relates to the DC universe and HBO Max. Leslie Grace is an incredibly talented actor and this decision is not a reflection of her performance.”
On Tuesday, the trade magazine Variety reported that the film had been planned under WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar and Warner Bros. CEO Ann Sarnoff, and was scheduled to be initially released on the HBO Max streaming platform. Since then, David Zaslav has come in as CEO of the newly formed Warner Bros. Discovery company, and has reversed their streaming-first corporate plans. The fate of Batgirl, according to Variety, seems to have been tied up in those strategy wars.