It’s all about paying attention to the specific words. Earlier this year, fans were thrown for a loop when images of ‘Titans’‘ Brenton Thwaites were revealed and he was shown dressed as Robin, because most assumed he would be playing Nightwing in the series. But looking back at Warner Brothers’ information regarding the show, they never referred to the role as anything other than “Dick Grayson,” not “Nightwing” or “Robin.” Everyone just assumed it would be Nightwing because he is older and the show is described as depicting his maturation, stepping out of his mentor’s shadow. (His mentor, by the way, who is never referred to as “Batman,” while we’re scrutinizing verbiage.)
In terms of the ‘Birds of Prey’ movie, there hasn’t been a lot in terms of factual information, but one of the most persistent rumors is that the movie would feature Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn and Barbara Gordon. That’s “Barbara Gordon,” NOT “Batgirl.” But knowing that Warner Brothers was working on a ‘Batgirl’ solo movie, it only makes sense that she appear in that superheroic guise in ‘Birds of Prey’, right? Well… no. Apparently, while Barbara Gordon is featured in ‘Birds of Prey’, she is not Batgirl, at least according to intel obtained by Umberto Gonzales:
How do you feel about #BirdsOfPrey being R? I think it’s interesting…
1) Fans fell in love with Harley in a PG-13 movie, some will be left out now
2) Batgirl has the potential to inspire young girls just like Wonder Woman. Why put her in a R-rated movie? https://t.co/Mad7USCrC0
— Batman-News.com (@BatmanNewsCom) July 8, 2018
Gonzales, from Heroic Hollywood, had a number of sources within the DC movie structure. Sometimes his info turns out to be true, but sometimes it doesn’t, so for right now, treat this as a rumor.
There was a followup tweet exchange in which Gonzales teased a morsel of additional information:
They didn’t say that on the record, rather Justin tweeted. Profound difference. Was decided recently no Batgirl. Attention to detail, I didn’t say Barbara Gordon, I said Batgirl. 😉
— Umberto Gonzalez (@elmayimbe) July 8, 2018
This follows statements from Robbie who stated that this film would receive an R-rating and would be made on a smaller budget.
This statement teases that Barbara Gordon will appear as Oracle. She premiered as computer ace/information broker Oracle in the pages of ‘Suicide Squad’, the comic that inspired the film in which Robbie made her DC Universe debut. She later went on to form a partnership with Black Canary as the ‘Birds of Prey’. They essentially acted as a duo and Black Canary/Dinah Lance didn’t even know the identity of her mystery informant for years. Since the beginning, however, ‘Birds of Prey’ has been thought of more as a team with various heroes and even villains working as operatives.
As Oracle, Barbara became incredibly popular– possibly even more so than she was as Batgirl– and was one of the most visible physically challenged superhero characters in comics. The decision to restore her to the role of Batgirl was made all the more controversial because many fans (including those with their own physical disabilities) lost Oracle in the process.
It was recently rumored that Catwoman would not be in this movie, but that The Huntress would. It’s also possible that The Penguin will be the villain. Robbie has also expressed a desire for the team to be multi-ethnic.
The script comes via Christina Hodson and the film will be directed by Cathy Yan. It’s unclear when production will begin as the fate of the DC Film Universe seems to rest on the performance of the upcoming ‘Aquaman’ and ‘Shazam!’ movies.