Entertainment industry figures and comics fans alike have been decrying Warner Bros. decision to cancel the HBO Max film Batgirl, which was all but finished but reportedly had disastrous test screenings.
Among them is filmmaker Kevin Smith, whose films have always had a cult following that overlaps with comic-movie fandom and who has helmed a few superhero projects himself.
Smith lambasted Warner Bros. for canceling the DC Comics film, in particular because the actor who played the titular role, Leslie Grace, is Latina, something of a watershed for representation in comic-book films.
Smith addressed the issue on his podcast "Hollywood Babble On," calling it a "bad look." See his comments below.
Kevin Smith Gets Caught in this Week's Warner Bros. Discovery Movesyoutu.be
Speaking with co-host and actor Ralph Garman, Smith laid into Warner Bros. for their decision as the audience they recorded in front of applauded.
“It’s an incredibly bad look to cancel the Latina Batgirl movie."
"I don’t give a sh*t if the movie was absolutely fu*king dogsh*t, and I guarantee you it wasn’t.”
Sources closes to the project have said that test audiences hate the the film so much it was "irredeemable," hence the cancellation. But given the budget and the directing team, Smith doesn't buy it. He went on to say:
“The two directors who directed that movie did a couple of episodes of Ms. Marvel and it was a wonderful fu*king show. And they had more money to do Batgirl than Ms. Marvel.”
Smith also criticized Warner Bros. for canceling Batgirl while moving ahead with another DC Comics film, next year's The Flash, which has been repeatedly delayed due to the erratic criminal behavior of its star, Ezra Miller.
“That is the baffling thing. I don’t give a sh*t how bad the Batgirl movie is, nobody in that movie is complicated or has anything in their real life you have to market around."
"In The Flash movie, we all know there’s a big problem. Flash is the Reverse-Flash in real life.”
Miller has been repeatedly arrested for physical altercations and invading people's homes in recent months, and was charged with felony burglary over the weekend in Vermont.
On Twitter, many people shared Smith's take on things and applauded him for speaking out.
The cancellation of Batgirl is just one of several controversial decisions Warner Bros. has made since its merger with Discovery, including rolling HBO Max into the Discovery+ streaming platform and canceling a raft of HBO Max series and films, including Smith's own highly anticipated adaptation of Strange Adventures.