Recently, it’s been revealed that the upcoming Birds of Prey film, which will feature Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn, will be reaching for an R-rating. This has raised some skepticism about the project, in particular from Batman-News.com, who took to Twitter about their concerns with the idea. What they didn’t expect was even more news about whether or not Batgirl would be in the film.
This came out when Batman-News.com tweeted about the idea of Birds of Prey being R rated. The issues they noted were Harley Quinn being popular in a PG-13 film before, so some fans of her there will be left out and that Batgirl inspires young girls, which conflicts with an R rating. This tweet was responded to by Umberto Gonzalez, who attempted to lay the second point to rest, by revealing that Batgirl will not be in Birds of Prey.
If true, the decision not to include Batgirl is a surprising one, as initial reports from the earliest days after Birds of Prey was announced seemed to indicate Batgirl was a lock to appear in the film. The hiring of screenwriter Christina Hodson, who wrote a script for Batgirl as well, to pen Birds of Prey seemed another indicator. Initially, it seemed like the plan was for Batgirl to appear in the “girl gang” team-up film before receiving her own spin-off.
Gonzalez clarified his point in a later tweet.
They didn't say that on the record, rather Justin tweeted. Profound difference. Was decided recently no Batgirl. Attention to detail, I didn't say Barbara Gordon, I said Batgirl. ?
— Umberto Gonzalez @ SDCC (@elmayimbe) July 8, 2018
This could mean that Barbara Gordon, like in the original comics, could be taking up the mantle of Oracle in DC’s film universe, though what this means for her solo outing is unclear. Gordon famously became a hacker and key supporting figure for Batman and other heroes after being paralyzed and wheelchair-bound at the hands of the Joker in The Killing Joke. In recent years, many women’s rights advocates have spoken out against Gordon’s fate at the hands of Joker, especially after a poorly-received animated adaptation of the graphic novel.