Warner Bros. Cans Nearly Completed Features ‘Batgirl’ & ‘Scoob!: Holiday Haunt’ Amid Merger Shakeup
Warner Bros. has made the shocking decision not to release two features that had both recently finished production. These films were part of a strategy conceived prior to the studio’s parent company, WarnerMedia’s merger with Discovery, and those now in charge seem to have rebuked both the strategy and the properties attached to it.
One of these was Batgirl which starred Leslie Grace (In The Heights) as well as Michael Keaton reprising his role as Batman for a few scenes, and the other was feature animation Scoob!: Holiday Haunt which a producer said was “practically finished.”
Batgirl’s budget was around $90 million, up from around $70 million after Covid-19 pandemic delays. The film is much cheaper than other DC films such as Aquaman, but it seems the studio didn’t want to eat the cost of marketing this film or had little belief it would draw many streaming or box office numbers.
Holiday Haunt was also on the lower end of budgets for a 3D animation, around $40 million reportedly. Warner’s leadership may be trying to cut a large swathe of cheaper content to make room for bigger blockbuster releases after the success of 2022 theatrical runs like Top Gun: Maverick.
Warner Bros Discovery will likely be facing more, not fewer shakeups in the near future, as an earnings call slated for Thursday will likely have to present even more cutthroat strategies to reduce the company’s significant debts.
Batgirl was directed by duo Billall Fallah and Adil El Arbi, who recently helmed some episodes of the series Ms. Marvel and the film Bad Boys For Life. The film also reportedly featured a strong villain performance by Brendan Fraser as Firefly. Holiday Haunt was a follow-up to the first Scoob! and was directed by Bill Haller and Michael Kurinsky.
One of the film’s co-writers Paul Dini, who is a comics and cartoon veteran called out Warner Bros. decision and claimed: “both kids & parents dug the WIP screening.”
Co-director Haller said that he “approved the last shot of animation last week,” and was full-steam ahead ready to release before the sudden announcement.
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