Right at the end of January, the proposed solo Batman film was thrown into chaos with the announcement that Ben Affleck will no longer be directing the blockbuster.
Suddenly speculation was rife that either Affleck, Warner Bros, or both weren’t happy with the script, while there were also rumors that Affleck might drop out altogether and not even reprise his role as Batman. Earlier this week Forbes suggested that Warner Bros and Affleck have reached a stage where they’re both happy with the script, while it was also reported that Ben Affleck’s solo Batman film could now be released as early as 2019.
But while Warner Bros. are clearly trying to figure out the best plan of action going forward for Batman in the DC Extended Universe, director and all-round nerd Kevin Smith might have just devised one for them. That’s because the filmmaker believes that the character of Batman and its world is so rich and all-encompassing and has such a fervent fan base that it deserves its own universe, just like Star Wars.
“This character can sustain multiple… interpretations, get on that schedule, and throw him around to everybody!… Just make a bunch! Make that [kung fu] one, make a ridiculously expensive one, make one in space… make Justice League Dark. Every year, there needs to be a Batman movie.”
Before they consider this move, it would probably be a better plan for Warner Bros. to get the DC Extended Universe in proper shape first, though, starting with finding Ben Affleck’s replacement as director for The Batman. The most recent rumors suggest that War For The Planet Of The Apes‘ Matt Reeves is the frontrunner for that position.
During the podcast Kevin Smith even ruminated on possible reasons for Ben Affleck’s departure from the position. The Chasing Amy, Dogma, and Jersey Girl director, who was previously close friends with Affleck but has admitted that their friendship fizzled out over the last decade, theorized that Affleck might have dropped out due to the increasing pressure of trying to match previous Batman films, most notably Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight.
Since Ben Affleck was in line to write, direct, produce, and star in The Batman, there would have been no wiggle room for the filmmaker if it had been lambasted critically, tanked financially, or both, so dropping out gives him a bit of leeway.
“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. 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.”
[Featured Image by Rich Polk/Getty Images and Warner Bros]