Warner Bros. Discovery isn’t finished with canceling or changing release dates for its upcoming projects. The latest changes were done to the sequels of Aquaman and Shazam!
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the studio announced on Wednesday that Aquaman and the Lost City’s releasehas been pushed back more than eight months from March 17, 2023, to Dec. 25, 2023. The film will see the return of Jason Momoa as the titular hero, Orm Marius (Patrick Wilson), and Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), as well as Ben Affleck’s Batman.
'Shazam! Fury of the Gods'Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures
Shazam! Fury of the Gods is also moving from December this year to Aquaman’s old date, March 17, 2023. The sequel will follow Billy Batson (Asher Angel) and his foster siblings as they navigate life as a superhero family. The movie had a massive debut at San Diego Comi-Con in July, but fans who could not attend the viewing will have to wait another eight months to see the superhero on the big screen.
While these major superhero movies are being pushed back a couple of months from their planned release dates, The Flash and Black Adam are still sitting on their set debut days.
Unfortunately, some heroes weren’t so lucky this week.
Batman: Caped Crusader and the holiday-special Merry Little Batman got the ax on Tuesday. According to TV Live, the projects are two of many animated projects that have been dropped by Warner Bros. Discovery in its attempt to move away from children and family content, as the company doesn’t believe that kid programming on HBO Max doesn’t justify the investment.
Damian Wayne in 'DCEASED'Credit: DC Comics
All of these changes to the DC properties are happening one right after another, most notably Batgirl. The film, which was set to release on HBO Max, was shelved and will not be released on any platform despite its $90 million budget.
“The guys from Warner told us it was not a talent problem from our part or the actress, or even the quality of the movie,” Batgirl co-director Adil El Arbi told Variety. “They told us it was a strategic change. There was new management, and they wanted to save some money.”
Although directors Bilall Fallah and Adil El Arbi were blocked from accessing the footage of Batgirl, a source told the Hollywood Reporter that there will be a “funeral screening” of Batgirl for the people who worked on the movie, both cast and crew, as well as representatives and executives. After the private screening, Batgirl will be shelved indefinitely.
It looks like Warner Bros. Discovery’s CEO David Zaslav’s attempt to reduce the debt of the company and save as much money as he can on marketing and distribution costs has caused a lot of concerns for the audience, actors, and filmmakers. It is a highly unusual move for Zaslav to prioritize cost-cutting over the entertainment being produced by the studio.
The announcements of canceled shows, removed films and series from HBO Max, and the upcoming changes to Warner Bros. Discovery’s theatrical release schedule, seem neverending. Hopefully, there are no more drastic changes for DC for the rest of this year.
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Source: The Hollywood Reporter