Cinema Australia Original Content:
by Matthew Eeles
Perth has been transformed into Gotham City and a local cast of up-and-coming actors have donned the masks of Arkham Asylum’s most infamous inmates including Bane, the Riddler and the Joker in the gritty new fan film, Batgirl Returns.
“The film’s a bit of a who’s who of Gotham City,” Batgirl Returns co-writer and co-director Matthew W Reynolds tells Cinema Australia. “Beyond Batgirl herself we’ve also got Batman, Nightwing, Jim Gordon, Alfred Pennyworth and Black Mask along with some of Gotham’s most dangerous criminals and most heroic members of law enforcement.”
Batgirl Returns stars co-writer and co-director Chloe Brown as Barbara Gordon who dons the famous cowl to become Batgirl – Gotham’s newest hero who dedicates her life to helping others, training herself to become a protector of the city she grew up in.
“Barbara Gordon is the most iconic of the Batgirls,” Brown told Cinema Australia during an interview last year. “Once I knew her full story, I was instantly connected. I am very lucky working alongside Matthew on this project, he is the comic genius that has fueled me with the knowledge I have now. I feel so close to Barbara that we would even have discussions of what she would eat, where she would go and what electives she did at school.”
Reynolds told Cinema Australia that he and Brown wanted to explore what makes Barbara Gordon herself so special while focusing less on her famous mentor, Batman.
“Batgirl Returns delves into Barbara’s personal life and how that drives her to be a hero,” Reynolds said. “We’ve mixed drama, humour and a whole lot of heart into our film which draws on a mix of different comic books along with several notable films and television shows.”
Making the film was a huge undertaking which spanned the entire city from the Swan River to Northbridge.
“We wanted to create a convincing Gotham City right here in Perth and fill it with characters who looked convincing and bring a real cinematic style to it all,” Reynolds said. “We couldn’t be prouder of the final result and it’s a real testament to everyone involved that we achieved our vision.”
Check out the first trailer for the film below and let us know what you think.
Audiences will be able to see the film when it’s released online later in the year.