While a standalone Batman movie from DC has been planned for many years, it hasn’t always been clear what we’d be getting. Initially, current Batman actor Ben Affleck was set to star in, direct, and co-write The Batman. However, Affleck stepped down as director in January, to be replaced by War for the Planet of the Apes’ Matt Reeves. It was then reported that Affleck’s script had been scrapped, and that he might not appear in the movie at all.
Affleck has now commented on his continued involvement with the DC universe. In an interview with ExtraTV, the star was asked if he will fulfil his five-film contract with the studio, to which he replied, rather wearily: “I don’t know about that. We’ll see what the future holds.”
In July it was rumored that DC were considering easing Affleck out of the role. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio were looking to replace the 45-year-old star as Batman, a change that would be addressed “in some shape or form in one of the upcoming DC films.”
Since Reeves came on board, the direction of The Batman has clearly changed. While the director has since stated that Affleck is still involved, he has also confirmed that his script would no longer be used. Reeves has also teased a few details about his film. “It’s really that emotionality that I am interested in,” he said. “I want to do a very point-of-view-driven [film]. In all the films what I try to do, in almost a Hitchcockian sense, is use the camera and use the storytelling so that you become the character and you empathise with that point of view,” he said.
“I think there is a chance to do an almost noir-driven detective version of Batman that is point of view driven in a very, very powerful way. And hopefully it is going to connect you to what’s going on inside of his head and inside of his heart.”
Affleck’s latest appearance as Batman is in Justice League, which hits theaters on November 17. This week it was revealed that the surprisingly short running time of the movie was ordered by Warner CEO Kevin Tsujihara as a reaction to the extended length of previous movies such as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The film clocks in at 119 minutes, which makes it the shortest movie in the DC universe so far.