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This was one of the most consequential weeks in DC’s history. Warner Bros. Discovery seems to have found the executive to lead that division’s film and TV efforts. There were funeral screenings for canceled movie Batgirl. And the moving of major tentpoles Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom and Shazam! Fury of the Gods revealed the shifting sands under the newly acquired studio.
Amid all the bustle this week on the Burbank lot, one could have easily missed a pair of figures walking around the offices and heading to a meeting of the highest order. But that’s what Ezra Miller, the star of Warners’ high-profile DC movie The Flash, and their agent, CAA’s Scott Metzger, did Wednesday — the same day a Batgirl screening took place.
Miller, who uses they/them pronouns, and Metzger met with new Warner Bros. film chairs Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdy to discuss not only how to stay on course for The Flash’s June 23, 2023, release date but to reaffirm their commitment to the movie as well as apologize for bringing negative attention to the production and the company.
Over the past two years, Miller has been at the center of arrests and controversy, culminating with the actor posting a mea culpa Aug. 15 and saying they were seeking help for mental health issues. Said the actor at the time, “I want to apologize to everyone that I have alarmed and upset with my past behavior.”
According to sources, Miller vowed to seek help after learning that De Luca and Abdy were considering all options for Flash, including scrapping the $200 million movie if things devolved further with Miller. While the actor is said to not have minded the stream of bad headlines, they were spooked by the notion of the film getting canceled and jolted to take action. Says one source: “They care about The Flash. It’s one of their favorite characters to play.”
Details of the meeting were not revealed, but it was the first time that Miller had spoken with De Luca and Abdy, who took over running the film division at the beginning of July and inherited a DC slate in various stages of postproduction. The actor was apologetic and affirmed their commitment to both getting care and to the production.
Warners had no comment, and Miller’s representatives could not be reached for comment.
The move comes as work on The Flash, directed by Andy Muschietti, moves full steam ahead, with Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav not wavering on its release date, even as Warners this week pushed Shazam! Fury of the Gods out of 2022 and Aquaman 2 back from March 2023 to Christmas of that year. (Aquaman’s push was due to the long runway need to complete the intensive and complex visual effects, while Shazam! departed a date that was a week away from juggernaut Avatar: The Way of Water.)
Next week, composer Benjamin Wallfisch will lead a scoring session at Abbey Road Studios in London, sources say. Visual effects work continues and could be done by the end of the year.
After months of upsetting headlines about Miller, the mood regarding Flash is more hopeful on the lot than it’s been in some time, even if the movie still has a ways to go before its release. Still, it has been receiving some of the highest scores at test screenings since Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight movies, and execs and creatives believe they have a critical and box office hit on their hands that lives up to those scores.
Carolyn Giardina contributed to this story.
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