Just as the news of one major Batman project falls, another one rises. In fact, a few have risen. Writer-director Matt Reeves and his company 6th and Idaho just signed a first-look deal with Warner Bros. to continue to develop and expand his Batman universe, which began with last year’s hit, The Batman. He’s working on the sequel with a new writer, continuing the Colin Farrell-led Penguin show for HBO Max, and possibly developing a long-rumored Arkham Asylum project too.
It’s the first major deal given to a filmmaker since Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdy were hired by Warner Bros. Discovery CEO (and burgeoning Bat-villain) David Zaslav to run Warner Bros.’ film division. “Pam and I gratefully inherited the relationship with Matt from The Batman, and through the beginning stages of planning The Penguin series for HBO Max,” De Luca said to Deadline, which broke the story. “We were excited to nail down his overall deal because it’s a cornerstone of what we want to do with the filmmakers that are working at the studio. We want to create an atmosphere where all of these filmmakers can excel and do their work and stay with us once they are inside the Warners family. Keeping Matt and creating a home for him to do more projects in the Batman universe but also originals, was very important to us.”
That Warner Bros. is actively moving forward with a project seems refreshing after weeks of hacking and slashing. It began, of course, with the Batgirl film being cancelled, which was then followed by multiple different movies and TV shows, especially animated ones like Infinity Train, being cancelled and/or removed from HBO Max. The company even dumped streaming episodes of Sesame Street. Sesame Street!
Then, earlier this week, development on what seemed like another surefire Batman project, an animated series called Batman: Caped Crusader—by Reeves, J.J. Abrams, Bruce Timm, and Ed Brubaker—was halted, though it will be shopped around to other outlets. All of which is to say, it might seem like everything is dying, but it’s not everything. Reeves’ vision of The Batman, and anything else he wants to make, lives.
“Making this legendary studio my home is a dream,” Reeves said. “I am so excited to be working with Mike, Pam, and Channing [Dungey, chairman of WB TV] and our teams to bring captivating stories I am truly passionate about to the big and small screen.”
Reeves is currently writing the untitled Batman sequel with Mattson Tomlin, who wrote two recent streaming films: Project Power and Mother/Android.
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