Uh... is Zack Snyder busy these days?

Joss Whedon stepped in to finish Justice League for Snyder after the filmmaker decided to step down during production to spend time with his family. Shortly before Whedon signed on for Justice League he had signed on to write and direct a Batgirl movie for Warner Bros., based on the adventures of the classic Dark Knight sidekick and hero in her own right. But with basically no progress to show for almost a year of development, The Hollywood Reporter now says Whedon is departing the project.

He gave this statement to THR:

Batgirl is such an exciting project, and Warners/DC such collaborative and supportive partners, that it took me months to realize I really didn’t have a story ... I’m grateful to Geoff [Johns] and Toby [Emmerich] and everyone who was so welcoming when I arrived, and so understanding when I ... uh, is there a sexier word for ‘failed’?

The trade’s sources say that Whedon decided he “could not crack the code of what a Batgirl movie should be,” while noting that a male filmmaker directing a film starring one of the most iconic female superheroes could face a significant backlash. Without a killer story, or a great reason to make the movie (besides, obviously, the money) bowing out gracefully may have been the smartest move for all involved.

Still, it leaves Warners with yet another DC movie stuck in development hell. The Flash has lost a bunch of directors so far, and who knows if we’ll ever see a new Batman solo film with or without Ben Affleck as the Dark Knight. It looks more and more like Aquaman is going to be a huge test for this current slate of DC movies. If it’s a hit, then things will probably continue as they are for a while. If it flops like Justice League ... who knows what happens next.

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