Leslie Grace Deserves Her Batgirl Moment (and Michael Keaton, Too)

Warner Bros. Discovery’s baffling and outrageous decision to write off Batgirl as a loss damages the studio more than any bad movie or budget deficit.

Joshua M. Patton
6 min readAug 4, 2022

The DC universe of live-action films is an utter mess, and fans hoping to see the ship righted welcomed the new corporate overlords at the (now) Warner Bros. Discovery with high hopes. Yet, with each successive week those hopes are dashed against the ground like Superman dragging one of those Kryptonian baddies in The Man of Steel. The most egregious insult to the DC brand thus far has been the decision to outright cancel Batgirl, a film starring Leslie Grace, J.K. Simmons, and featuring Michael Keaton as Batman. Not only is this outrageous considering the hundreds of people who worked to make it, it shows that to Warner Bros. Discovery cinema is just “content.”

A notorious New York tabloid first broke the story with an unnamed source claiming that the movie was so bad, the studio was forced to lock it in a vault lest it irreparably damage the brand. Yet, another cancellation of a near-finished film, Scoob!: Holiday Haunt, was also shelved, and Variety reported that this is likely down as tax write down. CEO David Zaslav is reportedly obsessed with cutting costs at the studio. So, in order to get $90 million to play with on the balance sheet, Batgirl and Scoob! 2 cannot be shown commercially. This means it can’t go straight-to-DVD, onto HBO Max, or even sold to another studio. If this is what Warner Bros. Discovery ends up doing, why would any artist ever want to risk working for them?

Warner Bros. Discovery probably never planned to comment on this move officially for some time. However, because the first leak came from a person who said the movie was bad, they needed to do some damage control lest they start hemorrhaging talent. “The decision to not release Batgirl reflects our leadership’s strategic shift as it relates to the DC universe and HBO Max,” some poor Warner flack had to tell The Hollywood Reporter, adding, “Leslie Grace is an incredibly talented actor, and this decision is not a reflection of her performance. We are incredibly grateful to the filmmakers of Batgirl and Scoob! Holiday Haunt and their…

Joshua M. Patton

Entertainment, culture, politics, essays & lots of Star Wars. Bylines: Comic Years, CBR. Like my work? Buy me a coffee: https://ko-fi.com/O5O0GR