After Joss Whedon’s surprisingly deadpan exit from scripting the upcoming Batgirl movie, there was a flurry of excitement about what woman could take over in his stead. Countless were theorized, while some (like World of Wakanda writer Roxane Gay) even made decent headway with DC. However, a new report indicates that Whedon’s departure set the film back so much that it may not be happening anytime soon.
According to The Wrap, there are no plans to attach any new filmmakers to the project in the wake of Whedon, which may be because Warner Bros. is losing interest in the property or because it realizes that it needs to develop its core heroes before branching out into spin-offs.
The disappointing response to Justice League shook up the entire DCEU and its strategy (leading to the rise of exec Toby Emmerich), so adapting in this way may use Whedon’s exit as an excuse.
The report also posits that even if Whedon stayed with Batgirl and everything went according to plan, the film was still going to wait until after Matt Reeves’ Batman standalone (which may or may not replace Ben Affleck as the Caped Crusader).
That means that regardless of the character herself, Batgirl was always a second or third priority in the studio’s game plan — which makes some sense when their bread and butter isn't doing so well in the first place. The next up to bat for the company is Aquaman in December, but if his standalone also flops, the fate of the DC comic films universe will be even shakier.