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Batgirl Composer Got Danny Elfman’s Blessing to Use Theme from Batman in Now-Canceled Movie

Comedian Natalie Holt had an exclusive interview confirming Danny Elfman approved of her incorporating his main theme for 1989’s Batgirl into the unreleased movie’s score.

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Natalie Holt, the composer behind the canceled Batgirl movie, said recently that she had permission from Danny Elfman to use his Batman theme in the score.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Holt confirmed Elfman’s approval of her plans to use the iconic musical motif in scenes starring Michael Keaton’s Caped Crusader. She explained that she had planned to use his original Batman theme for Michael so that the character’s history would be consistent. I had Danny Elfman’s approval, as he put it. Tim Burton’s Batman movies, Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992), both featured Elfman’s score. In 2017, Elfman used the same theme for Justice League, a film that takes place in an alternate timeline from the Burton films.

As of August 2022, Warner Bros. Discovery had decided to cancel Batgirl, which came as a shock to both fans and professionals. Poor audience response to test screenings and shifts in Warner Bros.’ vision for the DC Extended Universe were cited as reasons for canceling the HBO Max exclusive. Warner Bros. eventually issued a statement that was consistent with the latter theory, saying, “The decision to not release Batgirl reflects our leadership’s strategic shift as it relates to the DC universe and HBO Max.” This is not a reflection on Leslie Grace’s performance, who is a tremendously gifted actor.

Is It True That Michael Keaton Won’t Be Appearing as Batman Again?

In any case, the decision to cancel Batgirl has the same effect. It’s highly unlikely that we’ll ever get to see Michael Keaton in the role of Batman. To many, the fact that the film’s acclaimed actor would be playing his most famous role again was the most intriguing aspect of the film, especially since Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah made no secret of their admiration for Tim Burton’s work. As kids, we watched Batman: The Animated Series and instantly became obsessed with the character. We’re aiming for something along the lines of the Tim Burton films and hope that this serves as inspiration. And [Michael] Keaton’s portrayal of Bruce Wayne/Batman being the first superhero ever? El Arbi said, “It’s just a dream,” right before production on the film was halted.

When word spread that the HBO Max exclusive wouldn’t be released, El Arbi posted a photo of Keaton dressed as the Dark Knight from Batgirl. Pictured with Keaton’s Batman and Grace’s Batgirl on a rooftop set at night is the director. The Flash, which stars Keaton as Batman, will still premiere in June 2023, as previously announced.