Empire Australasia - May 2018

(Kiana) #1
What might a Batgirl
movie look like?
After working on it for over a year,
Joss Whedon has quit Batgirl — the
long-mooted DC movie focused on
Barbara Gordon, the daughter of
Commissioner Gordon who dons her
own Batsuit — saying he “didn’t have
a story”. But there are plenty to choose
from, if the project continues. Gail
Simone’s psychologically dark run of
the comics saw a PTSD-suffering Batgirl
recovering her mojo after being shot
through the spine by the Joker (in
Alan Moore’s infamous The Killing
Joke). Scott Beatty and Chuck Dixon’s
Batgirl: Year One is a lighter affair
and gives us a fresh origin story. And
Hope Larson’s recent series in the DC
Rebirth line presents a Batgirl still in
college, should the DCEU be looking
for some of that breezier Spider-Man:
Homecoming vibe to counter Zack
Snyder’s Gotham gloom.

Who could direct?
Lexi Alexander. She’s a director
of Palestinian-German-American
heritage (and former karate world

champion and stuntwoman).
Her irst feature ilm was 2005’s
Green Street, with Elijah Wood.
She then unjustly found herself in
“movie jail” in 2008 following the
perceived failure of her ultra-violent,
blackly comedic Marvel actioner
Punisher: War Zone.

What are her credentials?
The aforementioned Punisher ilm
has long been defended by fans as an
underrated cult semi-classic: its lack
of success as much due to mishandling
by the studio as to any laws in the
movie. In the subsequent decade
Alexander has made a gradual but
strong comeback: particularly on
television, where — signiicantly —
she’s directed well-received episodes
of DC shows Arrow and Supergirl.

Why would she be perfect for
the Batgirl job?
She’s proven that she can handle
gritty violence and gonzo action
but also lighten up for wider-appeal
PG-13 material (she even made
a feel-good family movie, Lifted,
in 2011). She has experience not
just with comic-book properties but
speciically with DC characters. And
she’s been outspoken on Twitter and
elsewhere about Hollywood sexism
hindering the careers of female
directors, not least her own. Giving
her the opportunity to step up to
the big leagues with Batgirl would
be a vindication of everything she’s
been ighting for throughout her
career. The time is right. OWEN WILLIAMS

With Joss Whedon exiting
DC’s Batgirl movie, what’s
next for Barbara Gordon?



You seem to keep yourself
ludicrously busy. How do you relax?
The main thing is to spend time with
my family. Also, I like to go through
different film libraries and look at
different kinds of movies and
educate myself. When I’m on
downtime I like to go through some
of my favourite directors and
explore world cinema. I’ll look at
Japanese cinema, film noir, or look
at some classics that I grew up on,
just to stay inspired, stay

Are you working your way through
a particular director at the moment?
I’ve been enjoying looking at my
uncle’s [Francis Ford Coppola]
movies again. I hadn’t seen
Apocalypse Now for a while and then
I double-billed 1 and 2 of The
Godfather. I’m trying to get a copy
of The Conversation, but it’s
proving difficult.

The Conversation is amazing.
Oh my God, yeah. I haven’t seen
it since I was like 14. I’ll also try to
go through the Welles filmography.
My dad took me to see Citizen Kane
when I was nine. I saw it again just
a couple of weeks ago and wow,
did that inspire me. I still don’t
think any movie’s come close to
capturing the movement and the
camerawork that are accomplished
in that film. I watched it on
Thursday night and then watched it
again on Friday morning.



Troubled waters:
Batgirl in the Hope
Larson-penned DC
Rebirth comic



Free download pdf