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Batgirl Is Apparently Getting Some Secret Screenings Before Getting Locked Away

Leslie Grace in Batgirl suit
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

A little over three weeks ago, we were living in a world where Batgirl on track to be released exclusively to HBO Max subscribers. However, at the beginning of August, it was announced that Warner Bros. Discovery scrapped Batgirl’s release, meaning the public will never lay their eyes on it. However, there are a select few who will get to watch the DC movie, as some secret screenings are being held before it’s locked away.

According to THR, cast and crew members who worked on Batgirl, as well as representatives and executives, have been invited to secret screenings of the movie on the Warner Bros. lot. A source who spoke with the publication described these as “funeral screenings,” because once they’ve been held, the footage will be secured in either a digital or physical vault. So these few individuals will be part of an exclusive club of saying they saw Batgirl, and membership will not expand at a later date.

This news follows shortly after Batgirl directors Adil El Arbi & Bilall Fallah revealed that after they learned their movie was being set aside, they attempted to salvage the work they’d already finished on it. The duo was even willing to resort to shooting what they had done on their phones, but Fallah discovered that their Batgirl work had been taken off the server. Batgirl was in the midst of postproduction when Warner Bros. Discovery decided to scrap its release, and was filled with a temp score and unfinished visual effects. So the attendees of this special screening won’t be seeing Batgirl in its completed form, but rather the sum of the efforts poured into the feature before it was shelved alongside Scoob! Holiday Haunt

As for why Batgirl couldn’t see the light of day in the future in a manner similar to what happened with Zack Snyder’s Justice League, it goes beyond Adil El Arbi & Bilall Fallah not having access to the footage. Warner Bros. Discovery is reportedly taking a tax write-down on Batgirl, which is estimated to have spent $90 million on production. Justice League was never a tax write-down for Warner Bros. so there was no issue releasing Zack Snyder’s Justice League four years after the theatrical version. Whereas with Batgirl, if it were to be released years from now, that would open up a can of legal worms. In fact, THR has heard that Warner Bros. may go as far as to destroy the Batgirl footage to convince the IRS that it will never receive revenue from the project, though other sources have disputed that this will happen.

Had Batgirl been released as planned, we would have seen Leslie Grace’s Barbara Gordon tangle with Brendan Fraser’s Firefly, and it was also revealed that Killer Moth would have caused some trouble. J.K. Simmons and Michael Keaton respectively reprised Commissioner James Gordon and Bruce Wayne/Batman, and the Batgirl cast also included Ivory Aquino, Jacob Scipio, Rebecca Front, Corey Johnson and Ethan Kai. Birds of Prey and The Flash’s Christina Hodson wrote the script.

If you’re reading this and are lucky enough to have been invited to one of the secret Batgirl screenings, my hat goes off to you. For everyone else, check out our guide of upcoming DC movies to learn what this superhero franchise still has coming up.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.