Warner Bros. is shutting down its Warner Premiere division, according to Hollywood Reporter, removing DC OAV production from the control of DC Entertainment President Diane Nelson. Nelson had run the division since its founding in 2006 and continued to run it after her promotion to DC President in September of 2009 (see "More on DC Entertainment").
The reason for the shutdown was declining DVD sales and the move to digital, according to the report. The remaining employees (less than 10) are being moved to other Warners divisions.
Warner Premiere is currently in the process of releasing a two-part animated adaptation of Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns (see "'The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1'"). The first part releases September 25th; the second in early 2013. The announcement indicates that production on features in the pipe will continue, so we’re expecting that both parts will be released as scheduled.
The division had produced a steady flow of DC-based OAVs over the years, including most recently features starring Superman (see "First Clip from 'Superman vs. the Elite'") and Batman (see "'Batman: Year One' Film Close to Comic"). Since the features were never shown on TV, there was greater latitude with regard to the content. Future DC-based animation will be produced and released by Warner Bros. Animation and Warner Home Video according to the report.
Warner Premiere also produced OAVs based on a variety of properties other than DC’s, including Free Willy, Ace Ventura Jr., and the Dukes of Hazzard.