We’ll probably never really know why Ben Affleck dropped out of directing The Batman. Ever since it was announced that the actor wouldn’t be fulfilling his previous commitment to oversee the blockbuster, there’s been rampant speculation over how much the quality of The Batman’s script and the failure of Live By Night caused Affleck’s departure.
But now Ben Affleck’s old friend, Kevin Smith, who has previously admitted that he’s not been close friends with the actor in years, has been trying to figure out why the Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice actor pulled out of the production.
Kevin Smith discussed his theories on his Fat Man On Batman YouTube video, via Comic Book, and he surmised that Ben Affleck dropped out because he knew that he couldn’t make a film that measured up to the other Batman efforts.
In particular Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight.
“Everybody wants that to be the greatest Batman movie ever made, and you know, in many cases, maybe the greatest Batman movie ever made has been made, called The Dark Knight, it’s a pretty wonderful film. If that’s your bar for a Batman standalone, Chris Nolan couldn’t even measure up to himself with The Dark Knight Rises. I liked it but it wasn’t received nearly as well. Let’s be honest like that Joker portrayal is for the ages.”
Kevin Smith then predicted that Ben Affleck probably decided that with all the incessant pressure that was already beginning to build up around The Batman, even before the script was finished and production had started, the hassle just wasn’t worth it.
“So, it’s a tall order man. So maybe he’s the kind of guy who’s just like why bother. Why am I going to step up to the plate, no matter what I do people are going to b****. If it ain’t f****** The Dark Knight, I’m f*****. But if I’m just acting in it… The guy or girl tells me what to do and go and so you got a beef with the movie? Talk to these motherf******. That’s easier. That’s an easier life. You don’t have to sit there and take the slings and arrows.”
While Ben Affleck and Kevin Smith were previously close friends, having worked on the likes of Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jersey Girl, and Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back together, their friendship has since dissipated to the point that they hardly speak any more. Kevin Smith talked about the demise of their friendship to Yahoo! Movies back in July of 2014, admitting that it coincided with Affleck’s marriage to Jennifer Garner.
“I don’t know, because we’re not f***ing tight. I have not been [close with him] in decades. That’s old Ben. He’s got a wife [Jennifer Garner] that don’t [sic] care for me at all [Laughs]. And plus, honestly, he probably don’t care for me at all anymore [either]. He’s a triple-A-list movie star and s**t like that. If he’s Jimmy Carter, I’m Billy Carter, to put it in ’70s terms. And I’m not even related and s**t.”
Ben Affleck confirmed that he wouldn’t be directing The Batman, but just writing, producing, and starring in it instead, with a statement to Variety at the start of this week.
“There are certain characters who hold a special place in the hearts of millions. Performing this role demands focus, passion and the very best performance I can give. It has become clear that I cannot do both jobs to the level they require. Together with the studio, I have decided to find a partner in a director who will collaborate with me on this massive film. I am still in this, and we are making it, but we are currently looking for a director. I remain extremely committed to this project, and look forward to bringing this to life for fans around the world.”
As a die-hard comic-book fan, some moviegoers quickly suggested that Kevin Smith would be a perfect replacement for Ben Affleck in the director’s chair. Especially since it would give the duo the perfect chance to rekindle their friendship. However, Kevin Smith quickly took to Twitter to dismiss such speculation.
— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) January 31, 2017
[Featured Image by Warner Bros.]