After spending $90 million to produce it, why did Warner Brothers cancel "Bat Girl"?

After spending $90 million to produce it, why did Warner Brothers cancel “Bat Girl”?

Last Tuesday, Bilal Fellah and Adel Elaraby, the Belgian filmmakers of Moroccan origin and the directors of “Batgirl” in Morocco, were celebrating the latter’s wedding in Tangiers with a party attended by Hollywood guests such as star Will Smith, the hero of “Bad Boys for Life”. (Bad Boys for Life).

In the wake of this happy occasion, El-Araby and Falah received shocking news, as Warner Bros. decided not to show the film, despite the completion of filming and entering the final post-production phase preparing for the show, after it was scheduled to be presented on the HBO platform. Max” (HBO MAX).

“We are saddened and shocked by the news,” the film’s makers wrote in a statement released on Instagram Wednesday. “As directors, it is important that our work is brought to the attention of audiences, and while the film is far from complete, we hope that fans around the world will have the opportunity to see the film and follow it for themselves. Perhaps. One day it will happen, God willing.”

Shattering the team’s hopes

Just a few months ago, “Pat Girl” was seen as one of the most interesting upcoming DC films, and was seen as a unique act in acting, with Leslie Grace being the first Latina to star in a DC movie. While the duo “Al Arabi and Falah” brought their rich cultural background as Moroccan-Belgian Muslim filmmakers.

The duo known as “Adel & Bilal” sparked enthusiasm after their movie “Bad Boys for Life” in 2020, and their next movie would have seen the return of Michael Keaton in the role of “Batman”, but it seems that this enthusiasm and these hopes have been shattered in light of several global and administrative variables within the company. Producer, what is it?

management change

Several sources indicate that “Bat Girl” was produced under a different system at Warner Bros., headed by Jason Keeler and Ann Sarnoff, which was focusing its efforts on expanding HBO Max’s streaming services, and that effort included a decision to release a studio slate. The entirety of 2021 will be streamed simultaneously on the streaming platform, helping to expand the platform’s subscriber base.

The movie “Bat Girl” got the green light for a budget of about $ 80 million under former CEO Jason Keeler, but the budget jumped to 90 million due to “Covid-19” protocols.

A new boss with a new strategy

With David Zaslav taking over the newly formed Warner Bros. Discovery as CEO this spring, he brought a new strategy. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Zaslav finds that, at one point, it doesn’t make sense to spend 80 Or $90 million on a movie for the catwalks, because it won’t necessarily attract more subscribers than a movie with a production value of just 40 million, for example.

The owners of “Bat Girl” eventually found themselves a victim of this decision, as it seems that the “Bat Girl” character is not large enough with a fan base to feel like it deserves a large theater release, nor is it small enough to make economic sense for broadcasting platforms. .

way to reduce taxes

Several sources inside the company say it’s almost certain that the new president will seek a tax write-off on “Bat Girl” and the “Scoob” sequel, which is seen internally as the most financially sound way to recover costs.

Budget larger than planned

The budget set for the film was not more than 75 million dollars, but due to the increases related to the “Covid-19” virus, the production cost rose and reached 90 million, and its filming ended months ago and was in beta tests for directors.

Initial public opinions

When a very early, test version of the film was shown, with its initial sound effects and scoreboard, the audience sample rating did not exceed 65%. In other circumstances this finding serves as a guide for filmmakers to make the necessary adjustments before it is released to the public, since these test runs are best used to determine whether audiences are engaged or uninterested during certain parts of the film, rather than as the final decision of the film.

It is known that many horror films that made good profits did not exceed the same percentage, according to the “Hollywood Reporter” website. The results of the initial evaluation of “Bat Girl” were similar to that of the movie “IT” released in 2017, but it made $ 700.3 million after its worldwide release.


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