While The Batman is currently smashing box office records, it has been widely known that the studio has big plans for the franchise. Even before the film's theatrical debut, it was confirmed that The Batman would expand on HBO Max through a new spin-off series that would focus on the Gotham City Police Department. In the official press release, Warner Bros. shared that the show would launch "a new Batman universe across multiple platforms."
Since the show's announcement, new details have slowly been unveiled. The Gotham PD series was also reported to focus on the roots and complexity of the city's corruption while Ed Brubaker, who wrote the Gotham Central comic-book series, claimed that The Batman spin-off series for HBO Max would be "the James Gordon show."
While the news has slowed down about the spin-off, it looks like an unfortunate decision has been made behind the scenes.
Matt Reeves Says Gotham PD's Spin-Off Is 'On Hold'
The Batman director Matt Reeves, via ScreenRant, sat down as a guest in one of the episodes of The Happy Sad Confused podcast to talk about the Gotham PD spinoff series for HBO Max.
Reeves first confirmed that the spinoff show had "actually been put on hold" while also revealing that it was supposed to be set during Bruce Wayne's first year as the Caped Crusader:
“One thing that we were going to do, that I was going to do...so there’s the Gotham Police show, that one has actually been put on hold, we’re not really doing that. The series was going to be kind of like Prince of the City where it was going to be Year One."
The veteran filmmaker continued by discussing the series, saying that the show would've explored a corrupt cop and how the "worst gang in Gotham were the GCPD."
Reeves then unveiled that the series' lead character would have crossed paths with Jeffrey Wright's Jim Gordon, with him describing the pair's encounter as a "battle for his soul:"
"Because the movie is Year Two and I wanted it to be the first appearance [of Batman], but it wasn’t going to be a Batman story. It was going to be about this corrupt cop and it was going to be about how the worst gang in Gotham were the GCPD. He was going to have crossed paths with Gordon, who would have been someone to measure him against, but it would be a battle for his soul. I loved this idea!”
Arkham Takes Gotham PD's Place on HBO Max
While Matt Reeves' latest confirmation is unfortunate, the details that the director shared about the series still managed to offer a preview of what was supposed to be in store for Batman fans. Still, it is unknown if the GCPD series is in fact canceled or whether it was changed to another show entirely.
Many would agree that Jeffrey Wright's performance as Jim Gordon in The Batman was memorable, and it would've been a visual treat to see his return in the planned HBO Max spinoff series. Despite that, the confirmation that The Batman will launch a new universe across multiple platforms could indicate that Gordon might eventually appear in one of the small screen projects.
It's also likely that the canceled storyline would end up as a subplot in one of the projects. The corrupt cop narrative could easily be included in the already-confirmed spinoff show about Colin Farrell's Penguin, meaning that the villain could use the GCPD as his leverage against Batman and Gordon.
The Batman is now playing in theaters worldwide.