The DC Extended Universe is set to move forward with countless new heroes and characters, including legacy heroes such as Leslie Grace's Batgirl coming to HBO Max. Under the leadership of Ms. Marvel directors Adil El Arbi and Billal Fallah, Grace will bring the franchise's take on Barbara Gordon to the expanding DC Universe, although there are still plenty of questions ahead of its debut.
Due to the much-publicized merger between Warner Bros. and Discovery, the DCEU has been in a major state of flux with regard to the franchise's upcoming releases, especially pertaining to the streaming/theatrical debate. For being another movie that will bring back Michael Keaton's Batman alongside Batgirl, the movie has largely flown under the radar, leading many to wonder what the deal is with its upcoming release.
Batgirl never came with an official release date, but reports indicated that it would arrive on HBO Max before 2022 came to an end alongside both Black Adam and Shazam!: Fury of the Gods in theaters. Now, thanks to the latest news surrounding this unique outing, the entire plan could be changing more than anybody expected.
When Will Batgirl's HBO Max Movie Release?
The release for Warner Bros.' Batgirl appears to have been delayed until 2023 instead of coming out before the end of this year. Additionally, the movie may now also be released in theaters instead of exclusively on HBO Max. This would have been the first DC movie to use that release strategy.
The report stems from an updated release schedule sent out by Warner Bros. to UK press, listing Batgirl under a section named "2023 Theatrical Releases" that indicates the film will head to UK theaters next year.
This comes after previous reports suggested that Warner Bros. was reconsidering its release strategy and thinking about moving all of its movies to purely theatrical debuts.
What's The Deal With Batgirl's Release?
To put it simply, it's clear that Warner Bros. has some obstacles to work through when it comes to the future of the DCEU on the big screen and the small screen.
Batgirl was in a unique situation from the beginning, being the first movie from the DCEU to be set for an exclusive streaming release alongside episodic shows like John Cena's Peacemaker. No specific reason was offered for why the company decided to go that route, but with the merger changing the way Warner Bros. does business, that status appears to be changing as well.
Looking at the move more closely, this could be a move largely due to the fact that HBO Max isn't available in many countries around the world. A theatrical release would mean that fans outside the United States and other major hubs could watch the film at the same time as the rest of the fans - not to mention it would bring WB some extra box office revenue as well.
Of course, it's equally possible Batgirl will remain an HBO Max exclusive in the United States while being released in theaters in regions the service is not yet available.
Even though nothing has officially come from Warner Bros on Batgirl's upcoming release publicly, the uncertainty surrounding the plan could be one of the biggest pieces of the WB merger to keep an eye on. Should it officially change to a theatrical release, it could set more in stone for the company's DCEU strategy, but for now, the wait only continues to see Batgirl in action for the first time.