The company and its subsidiaries may not be circling the drain yet, but Warner Bros. is on an infirm plane at the moment PR-wise between the problems at DC Comics and Joss Whedon’s recent attempt at explaining himself and clearing his name.
Neither case is going right for those who would benefit and fans are rebelling even harder on Twitter. They got the hashtag #BoycottWB to trend into the top topics in the past week or so, and more than that, many have taken the side of Ray Fisher – who has made it more than clear he is no friend to the studio or Whedon.
He doesn’t like Geoff Johns either and takes every opportunity to call the comic writer and TV producer a racist.
Fisher also blames Johns and WB for enabling Whedon’s behavior and, while forgiveness is divine, it’s a long way off for the latter seemingly. Conversely, Fisher is finding backup in the #BoycottWB movement, if you can call it that.
Twitterers of the opinion Fisher really is standing up for racial injustice in the workplace are cropping up. One is the user @Spagggs who posted quite plainly, “WB fired Ray Fisher for standing up against their racial abuse.”
No, they’re not alone. Others are lining up to reply using the hashtag and adding their support.
Here’s what @BobDigi69 had to say about Cyborg’s reported arc in The Flash being cut out and Fisher getting fired: “Ray Fisher had a substantial role in the Flash and was fired, and the movie reworked because he was a whistle-blower to abuse generated by people protected by the organization.”
A user named @inkedrescuer is perhaps the most fervent, listing all the aspects of the DCEU WB interfered with, which wasn’t limited to Justice League.
They altered everything they could about Zack Snyder’s vision and David Ayer to give us two very different cuts of two separate movies, leaving one (the Ayer Cut of Suicide Squad) never to be seen.
In that post, something else fans are rallying behind was pointed out – the drama Ben Affleck had to put up with.
Affleck recently explained it was the combo of Zack Snyder walking away when hit by a family tragedy and demands of putting up with the studio that took a toll on his personal life and ruined playing Batman.
Said @GonCruS, for instance, “#BoycottWB for pushing Ben Affleck to the edge #RestoreTheSnyderVerse.”
@Spagggs weighed in on this aspect of WB’s transgressions too. “#BoycottWB so actors don’t have to have to suffer the same experience that Ben Affleck had to go through,” they wrote.
Some think the solution to make up for all the pain is to give DC its own studio with more autonomy similar to Marvel’s dynamic at Disney – the logic being that the Snyderverse has a more optimal chance of getting restored that way.
“We need this!” declared avowed Batfleck fan @GeorgeSeia.
In a reply, @2013venjix saw the upside. “Give DC their independence and make WB their silent partner,” they said.
If this arrangement took place, it wouldn’t make much difference as WB isn’t doing anything too divergent from the comic label. The culture at DC has to change too for them to start listening to fans. It’s a lost art there more than it is at Marvel, Disney, WB, or anywhere.
And speaking of listening to the fans, Warner Bros. fumbled another major ball in the game of blockbuster franchise IPs by letting the continuation of Legendary Entertainment’s MonsterVerse slip through their fingers.
Despite the massive box office of Godzilla vs. Kong amid the dubious circumstances of a pandemic and combined worldwide grosses of four films over a decade, Warner’s streaming contender HBO Max won’t be the home of the new Godzilla TV series in development.
That honor goes to Apple TV+ now that they managed to strike a deal to stream the show and this development is causing a lot of buzz. Unable to bask in it, Warner is getting roasted on Twitter while they weather every other storm.
Some theorize there is a reason, believing Warner Bros. and Legendary aren’t getting along anymore, making the latter party seek “greener pastures.”
Others identify the cause as Legendary wanting revenge for Warner’s protectionary maneuvers when finally releasing GVK in theaters and on streaming last year that kept Legendary from selling their film to Netflix.
Netflix has the bragging rights of airing the Skull Island animated series and, looking at it now, it appears this deal with the Kong-centered series was the first salvo.
Then again in all fairness, we don’t know the status of Legendary and Warner’s partnership but WB is certainly giving the impression they are allowing their biggest assets to die.
With all of the above going on, time will tell what condition Warner Bros. is going to be in after the Discovery merger is finalized.