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A Nicolas Winding Refn 'Batgirl' Movie Would Probably Be 'The Killing Joke'

Director Nicolas Winding Refn spoke about his desire to direct a superhero film: 'I want to make Batgirl.'

By Tyler S. CallawayPublished 7 years ago 3 min read

Last weekend, director Nicolas Winding Refn's The Neon Demon debuted to mixed reviews, but during the media tour for the movie Refn spoke about his desire to direct a superhero film.

At one point, Refn was campaigning to direct the upcoming Wonder Woman movie that is now staring Gal Gadot with Patty Jenkins in the director's chair. So the prospect of directing a superhero film is still fresh in his mind.

Batgirl (via DC Comics).

This is what he told Business Insider when asked about directing a superhero film:

"God, I would love to make one, it would probably be great fun,I just don't know when it's going to happen. I very much enjoy my freedom creatively, but I also would love to make one of those big Hollywood films that costs a lot of money and has a lot of people running around with cell phones and all that insanity."

He added:

"You know the one I want to do? I want to make Batgirl. Let's get Warners working on it."

Batgirl is the superhero identity of Barbara Gordon, who is also the daughter of Gotham Police Commissioner Jim Gordon. She takes up the mantle of Batgirl and fights alongside Batman and later becomes his tech assistant known by the codename Oracle.

How Would A Batgirl Movie Work?

It was heavily rumored that Jena Malone was playing Barbara Gordon in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, but since the Ultimate Edition of the film has been released her role has been identified as Jenet Klyburn. It seems that Barbara Gordon has yet to be introduced into the DCEU.

Recently, J.K. Simmons was cast in the role of Jim Gordon (Barbara's father) in the upcoming Justice League film, so it means Barbara is not far behind from joining Batman - if she hasn't already. It is also worth mentioning that since Jason Todd's suit was in the Bat-Cave during Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and Jason Todd was only introduced as Robin in 1983 while Barbara Gordon became Batgirl far before, in 1967.

So, the fact that Barbara was not at Batman's side during the film helps us to assume that Batgirl is out doing her own thing after being alienated by Batman, or Barbara Gordon may have yet to take on her own cowl in the DCEU.

The Killing Joke

"The Killing Joke" (via DC Comics).

Refn is very well known for his dark and twisted tones in films like Drive and now The Neon Demon. Most of his films demand an R-rating — which makes it very difficult to see him directing a superhero movie that generally needs a PG-13 rating in order to be accessible to younger audiences. What if he got his hands on a very famous comic book storyline that could fit his style but would need an R-rating — or at least a hard PG-13?

In The Killing Joke, we see Barbara Gordon get shot by the Joker and become paralyzed from the waist down as a result. On top of that, we see the Joker strip Barbara down and take pictures of her bleeding body and show them to a kidnapped Jim Gordon as torture.

This story has been controversial for years — there are differing theories on whether Joker forced himself upon Barbara or not, but it is still sexual abuse nonetheless — and would need to be handled carefully, especially in such a mainstream universe. Refn has the touch to be able to do the story justice as well as show the positive message of survival behind all the darkness.

This film could be set up from Batgirl's point of view during The Killing Joke storyline, showing her history as Batgirl and then her fight to overcome the attack by the Joker and her newfound paralysis. It could be the introduction of her as Oracle.

Just as Zack Snyder loosely based Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice on The Dark Knight Returns, I could see Nicolas Winding Refn basing a Batgirl movie off of The Killing Joke.

If Refn could get Jared Leto and J.K. Simmons to join the film as the Joker and Jim Gordon, then we could see an amazing story put together by a talented cast. As for Barbara Gordon, my personal pick would be Emma Stone:

Emma Stone as Batgirl?


About the Creator

Tyler S. Callaway

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