Warner Bros. has officially flashed the Bat Signal.
As reported by Deadline, Oscar winning director and current Bruce Wayne actor Ben Affleck has been tagged as an official executive producer on the upcoming Justice League: Part One. But with Captain America: Civil War currently racking it up at the box office is it too little too late to save the DC film universe from the damage Zack Snyder’s Batman V Superman did to studios’ credibility?
The Washington Post doesn’t think so. In fact, if anyone can help salvage their slate of upcoming films, it appears Ben Affleck is the man for the job.
“Warner Bros. should consider itself lucky that it can wield Affleck in such a Swiss Army knife way,” columnist David Betancourt wrote last week following the announcement. “[C]onsidering that at the moment, he’s also embodies the most popular live-action DC superhero — one who (alongside Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman) has generated considerable buzz when talk turns to solo superhero movie franchises.”
More importantly, he argues, Ben’s ascension will help to appease all the fans that had been calling for Snyder’s head after Batman v Superman hit theaters.
“Putting Affleck’s name up with Snyder’s lets fans know that Snyder isn’t the only one in charge of WB/DC’s most important franchise.”
And while the Deadline article suggests that the promotion for Affleck is actually Ben’s way of being “supportive of Snyder,” Birth. Movies. Death. is reporting this to be the opposite case.
“My sources have told me that Affleck was incredibly unhappy about the reception of BvS. He felt humiliated after spending so much of the press tour saying how much better this film would be than Daredevil. On top of that his agent was furious when Kevin Tsujihara jumped the gun and announced him as the director of The Batman – there were still negotiations happening.”
Further, it could signal that Warner Bros. doesn’t think that Snyder is the man for the job any more with Affleck “edging Zack Snyder out of a controlling central position in the DC Movieverse.”
According to Forbes, Affleck is bringing aboard his Argo screenwriter Chris Terrio onto the Justice League movie for rewrites, instantly doubling the amount of Oscar winners now involved in the project. The move will also “help better align the Justice League film with Affleck’s solo Batman project” that Ben co-wrote with DC’s Chief Creative Officer and famed comic scribe Geoff Johns.
Ben Affleck’s promotion to executive producer isn’t the only shaking up happening behind the scenes of the DC filmverse. As reported by IGN, Flash director Seth Grahame Smith left the film over “creative differences” with the studio. And rumors persisted recently that Aquaman director James Wan was getting cold feet because of the drama unfolding at Warner Bros. Wan took to Twitter to dispel those rumors, taking a pic next to Aquaman artwork and assuring fans he’s sticking with the project.
Just resurfaced from been buried in a foxhole for the last two weeks, wrapping up all things #conjuring2. You guys are killing me.
— James Wan (@creepypuppet) May 2, 2016
And it’s not like all news regarding the DC film universe is bad. Variety reported today that Margot Robie is working on a Harley Quinn Suicide Squad spin-off that will feature various female heroes and villains teaming up, that includes Batgirl and Birds of Prey.
Considering Suicide Squad recently underwent rewrites of its own, fans should be relieved that Warner Bros. is doubling down on their favorite characters like Quinn.
What do you think? Can Ben Affleck save the DC film universe? Or has Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman doomed the franchises for good?
[Image via Batman News]