Elle Fanning Explains How Nicolas Winding Refn Started the ‘Batgirl’ Fan-Casting—But Is She Interested?

     April 24, 2020

If you’re not already convinced that Elle Fanning’s range is limitless, just wait until you see her in the upcoming Hulu series The Great. It’s a fictionalized satirical dramedy about the rise of Catherine the Great, with Fanning playing Catherine. I’ll fully admit I was ready to write this one off with the terrible excuse that period dramas just aren’t my thing, but her back-and-forths with Nicholas Hoult as Emperor Peter are truly not to be missed.

With all 10 episodes of the show arriving on Hulu on May 15th, I recently got the chance to chat with Fanning and Hoult about a little bit of everything! We talked early inspirations, getting involved in franchises, The Great, and loads more. We’ll be sharing the full chat closer to the show’s big debut, but for now, how about a brief tease of the conversation?


Image via Gaumont and Wild Bunch

Of course there’s a ton of Batgirl fan casting happening right now, and that likely has a lot to do with, one, the character being super popular and, two, the fact that Warner Bros. has had a Batgirl solo film in development for quite a while now. The funny thing about Fanning’s name being tossed around for the title role is that her Neon Demon director, Nicolas Winding Refn, has expressed interest in directing a Batgirl movie, so I just had to ask her about it.

“Nic, from the very start – like, I don’t know why. I don’t know why he does this but from the moment I met him when I was 16, my nickname is Batgirl to him. And he’s Robin – Robin Wonder Boy. So he’ll say like, ‘Hey, Batgirl! It’s Robin Wonder [Boy],’ like always. We were just joking, ‘Oh my god! Are they making this?’ Because he’s always called me that!”

It seems likely that Warner Bros. will recruit a female director to helm the film, but just to entertain the idea here for a moment; could you imagine what a Batgirl movie directed by Refn might look like? Even Fanning admitted, “He’ll do an out-there version. I don’t know if it’s super commercial.” I’d also like to bet that a Refn-directed Batgirl movie wouldn’t get a “four-quadrant” descriptor, but I’m all for taking risks and would like to bet that he’d have a fascinating and very unique spin on the material.

For more from Fanning, keep an eye out for our full interview for The Great coming to Collider soon!

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