Warner Bros. is making a whole lot of DC Comics films. From a Joker prequel to a Shazam! origin story to a troubled solo Flash film, the slate seems to grow bigger every day. Well, it turns out the studio still had no plans to put Batgirl on the big screen — at least not until Joss Whedon came calling.
Variety reports the studio “hadn’t planned on doing” a Batgirl movie until Whedon came in and pitched his idea for the project and showed his passion for Barbara Gordon’s story. Outside of Wonder Woman, she’s one of the studio’s biggest and best female heroes (seriously, just pick up a comic!), and it’s a shame DC hadn’t even considered a Batgirl film, at least not until an A-list director expressed interest.
It’s an interesting peek behind the curtain, and says a lot (good and bad) about DC’s plans for its big-screen superhero universe. Where Marvel Studios has opted to map things out a decade or so in advance, DC is playing things a bit faster and looser.
Along with Whedon, big-name directors like Robert Zemeckis and James Wan have been pitching their ideas for DC projects. If it’s a good idea, the studio considers it as it would any other film. It opens up more freedom and diversity, sure, but it can also make things a bit confusing when you have (for example) two different Jokers potentially wandering around two different versions of Gotham City.
That flexibility has also birthed a new, untitled comic book banner at Warner Bros. (which will house that aforementioned Joker prequel story). The goal is to leverage the comic canon to tell stories that don’t fit with the “main” continuity (basically an Elseworlds film banner), where you could conceivably tackle everything from Superman: Red Son to Gotham by Gaslight. The plan is obviously still in its early stages, but it’ll be interesting to see if it allows Warner Bros. to diversify from what Marvel is doing with its well-manicured phases.
What do you think of DC’s plans? Would you prefer a mapped-out story or something with a bit more flexibility?