How do you cut off “the fastest man alive” at the pass?
just a while ago The flash seemed like a solid bet for Warner Bros. Trusted recent hitmaker Andy Muschietti from It is at the helm, ben Affleck will make a bat-appearance if will Michael Keaton after seemingly burying that idea with the Oscar-winning birdman† The Flash character is a fan favorite (see “Entering The Speed Force” win as the most upbeat moment of the Oscars), and there’s also the fact that Ezra Miller is, as most would agree, very good in the role of Barry Allen of Central City, a/k/a The Flash. But there have been problems.
While the film, which went into production in October 2021, awaits its June 2023 bow, Miller continues the reported frenzy of bad press. They were arrested twice in Hawaii for disorderly conduct and second-degree assault, charged with “physical and emotional abuse” of an 18-year-old named Gibson who first met Miller when Gibson was 12 years old, and made himself unavailable to court officials seeking to serve a restraining order. And finally, a second A restraining order was issued against them to protect another teenager (after he allegedly became agitated about the origins of the Parcheesi game while armed).
Deadline reported this weekend that, yes, the studio that has already put $200 million into this movie is wondering what the heck they’re going to do.
“There’s no winning here for Warner Bros,” a source at the studio told the point of sale. “The hope is that the scandal will remain at a low level before the film is released, and we hope for the best.”
Deadline also wrote that WB isn’t just keeping fingers crossed and hoping this goes away. CEO and president of the newly merged Warner Bros. discovery, David Zaslavoriginally desired The flash to serve as the foundation for an ever-expanding string of mainstream hits for the studio. (He apparently thought an adaptation of comic book characters The Wonder Twins was too niche rats, not “ice ladders” on the big screen!)
Sunday’s report said that despite the deteriorating press, “the studio has been trying to get help for Miller.”
Earlier this week, Miller deleted their Instagram account after uploading strange images, including one that read “you can’t touch me, I’m in another universe.”
While no definitive action has been taken, Deadline also wrote that their sources have indicated that “even if no more allegations surface, the studio probably won’t keep Miller in the Flash role in future DC movies.”
But what to do with the June release? Many options are on the table, including severely limiting the publicity tour or even releasing the film only on HBO Max for “a write-off.”
Meanwhile, the Miller controversy has already thrown some speed bumps into the potential business synergy. In September, DC Comics will release the first in a series called The fastest man in the world, intended to lead up to the film’s release. Illustrated by the Muschetti himself, the cover shows Miller’s effigy caught largely naked, donning his Flash costume, prompting some comic book news to question whether that was a good idea.