‘Batgirl’ Filmmakers React to WBD’s Denial of DC Film: Studio Quickly Removed All Their Footage

After the David Zaslav-run Warner Bros Discovery cancelled HBO Max’s DC movie Batgirl, the film’s directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah said in an interview with French outlet Skript that the studio promptly barred them from accessing the film’s footage after unplugging the film during post-production.

“I went on the server,” Fallah explained. Everything was gone.”

“We were like, ‘F*cking sh*t!'” El Arbi continued. “All the scenes with Batman!”

As previously reported by Deadline, both filmmakers were in Morocco for El Arbi’s wedding when they learned the bad news about Batgirl.

David Zaslav Discusses DC’s “Ten Year Plan” in the Wake of ‘Batgirl’ Cancellation; ‘Flash’ Still On Track For Release
“The Warners guys told us it wasn’t a talent problem on our part or the actress’s part, or even the quality of the film,” El Arbi explained. “They told us it was a strategic change,” he continued. There was new management, and they wanted to cut costs.”

“It cannot be released in its current state,” El Arbi added, emphasising the unusual move by a studio to kill a film while it is still in the director’s rough cut. “There was no VFX… we still needed to shoot some scenes.” So, if they want us to make a Batgirl movie one day, they’d have to give us the means to do so. To finish it properly with our vision,” he added.

“We are saddened and shocked by the news,” the filmmakers wrote on Instagram on August 3rd, following the cancellation of Batgirl. We can’t believe it anymore. 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 the cancellation of Batgirl, Zaslav stated on the WBD’s Q2 earnings call, “We’re not going to launch a movie until it’s ready,” emphasising that a 10-year plan for the DC film universe is in the works.