A new name has been reportedly linked with Joss Whedon’s upcoming solo movie for Barbara Gordon AKA Batgirl. According to The Daily Popcorn, actress Olivia Thirlby is on the director’s radar for the title role.
Comic book movie fans will know Thirlby from her turn as Judge Anderson opposite Karl Urban in 2012’s Dredd. Her performance in the cult favourite movie was praised at the time, so we know that she has the chops to play a badass character. At age 31, Thirlby is potentially a little older than we expected the on-screen Batgirl to be, as previous reports have stated that Whedon would be drawing from Gail Simone’s college age iteration of the character, but the actress’ youthful looks shouldn’t make it too difficult for her to play younger than her years.
Thirlby’s casting would also make sense based on comments Whedon’s made about what sort of actress he’d like to see in his film. Here’s what he said a few months ago when discussing it:
“I doubt it will be a name. I think this is somewhere where you go and find Batgirl, then you cast her.”
While Thirlby isn’t totally unknown, she isn’t a household name, either, so this would fit within Whedon’s requirements. Still, it’s best not to put too much stock in this report just yet, as it’s only a rumour.
Back in June, we got word of Joss Whedon’s shortlist for Batgirl at the time. The batch of names included The Neon Demon‘s Elle Fanning, Olivia Cooke (Ready Player One), The Babysitter‘s Bella Thorne, Emma Roberts (Scream Queens), Don’t Breathe’s Jane Levy, Katherine Langford (13 Reasons Why) and Power Rangers‘ Naomi Scott. Thirlby isn’t listed there, of course, but that was another unsubstantiated rumour, so there might not have been any truth to it.
Regardless, Whedon’s first stab at the DCEU will be seen with this November’s Justice League, which he shepherded past the finish line after taking over the director’s chair from Zack Snyder for the movie’s reshoots. Batgirl doesn’t yet have a release date, but we hope to get some firm casting news in the near future.