It's been two years since Warner Bros. Discovery rattled the world by shelving Batgirl and the Scoob! sequel after both had wrapped filming. What followed was a series of removals and cancellations of films and TV, layoffs galore, and the axing of the previous failed DC franchise, also known as the Synderverse, in favor of James Gunn's and Peter Safran's new DC Studiosas CEO David Zaslav carved a bloody path to writing off Warner Bros.'s massive debt.

But Zaslav's efforts might have not been worth the effort.

Is Warner Bros. Selling?

According to Variety, Warner Bros. employees reportedly believe that the company could be sold to a rival studio. Despite having several of the highest-grossing films of 2023, which include Greta Gerwig's Barbie, the 100-year-old studio might be sold to one of the big five production giants in Hollywood.

Not only is Warner Bros. one of the five Big Five major studios today--along with Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Walt Disney Studios, and Sony Pictures--but its status as a production giant has existed since its inception in 1923. When the film industry was still in its beginnings, there were five giants in the Hollywood studio system: Paramount, RKO Pictures, MGM, Fox, and Warner Bros. Warner Bros. and Paramount are the only two of the original Big Five that still maintain that status.

Unfortunately, Warner Bros. is reportedly at risk of being bought up in the next two years if DC Studios does not succeed under Gunn and Safran. Universal is the most likely candidate to buy the studio, but nothing is set in stone.

Major shifts like this are not unheard of in Hollywood. In the history of the film industry in the U.S., Fox, later coined 20th Century Fox, was one of the original Big Five, but lost its status when it was bought by Walt Disney Studios in 2019. Warner Bros. could follow a similar track as Fox if it can't find a solution for its problem.

What the Future of Warner Bros. Could Look Like?

What could Warner Bros. films and shows look like if Universal were to buy?

Currently, Warner Bros. owns HBO and the right to all DC Comic properties. Within those subsidiaries, popular shows like The Last of Usand House of the Dragon will be under the control of Universal. Warner Bros. employees, as well as the entire film industry, will have to wait as more news of a potential Warner Bros. sale develops.

Source: Variety