Weeks after HBO Max’s DC movie Batgirl was canceled by the David Zaslav-run Warner Bros Discovery, the film’s directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah said in an interview with French outlet Skript that the studio promptly prevented them from accessing the pic’s footage after unplugging the movie during post-production.
Fallah said, “I went on the server… Everything was gone.”
El Arbi added: “We were like, ‘F*cking sh*t!’ All the scenes with Batman in them!”
As Deadline first told you, both filmmakers were in Morocco for El Arbi’s wedding when they first learned the bad news about Batgirl.
“The guys from Warners told us it was not a talent problem from our part or the actress, or even the quality of the movie,” said El Arbi. He continued, “They told us it was a strategic change. There was new management, and they wanted to save some money.”
“It cannot be released in its current state,” El Arbi added, underscoring the unusual maneuver for a studio to kill a film during a director’s rough cut. “There’s no VFX… we still had some scenes to shoot. So if one day they want us to release the Batgirl movie, they’d have to give us the means to do it. To finish it properly with our vision,” he added.
In an August 3 Instagram post after Batgirl was axed, the filmmakers said: “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.”
When asked about scrapping Batgirl, Zaslav on the WBD’s Q2 earnings call said, “We’re not going to launch a movie until it’s ready,” while emphasizing that a 10-year plan for the DC film universe is in the works.
Must Read Stories
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.