Did Ben Affleck pass on directing Star Wars: The Force Awakens to become Batman for Warner Bros. DC Universe? It seems like he might have. Affleck was on HBO’s Any Given Wednesday to discuss deflategate, but before that, Affleck spoke to host Bill Simmons about the trajectory of his career and its many ups and downs.
While discussing the different career options he had before him once Gone Baby Gone and The Town were directorial successes, Affleck insinuated that Star Wars: The Force Awakens was a project he passed on to go down another avenue. The actor-director said he had a lot of choices to make, and so many decisions were at his feet. If he chose one direction over another, his path could’ve been completely different in terms of his career.
Are you relieved or bummed out he said no? https://t.co/LN84ZXN3BW
— Birth.Movies.Death. (@bmoviesd) June 24, 2016
Simmons asked that whether or not he had been up to direct Star Wars: The Force Awakens before its ultimate director J.J. Abrams took the position, and to that Affleck coyly responded with a simple statement.
“Well I wouldn’t be able to say. It wouldn’t be polite to talk about the jobs you turned down. But I did have a lot of offers.”
He didn’t exactly deny that he was approached to direct Star Wars: The Force Awakens. This isn’t the first time fans are hearing Ben Affleck’s name attached to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, either. Back in 2012, there were rumors that Affleck was poised to lead off the saga; but, back then, the actor brushed it off with a few jokes.
“I’d be too busy worrying about how the action figures would look for each character to direct the actual movie. I’d be like, ‘Oh, we’ll just reshoot the movie with the action figures.’ It’s very exciting that they’re going to make more, I have to say. There might be purists who are opposed to it, who knows…but I think it’s a very cool thing and I’m excited to go see the movie.”
Even though Abrams’ name was just starting to generate buzz for the new Star Wars job, Affleck expressed great faith in seeing how the director might tackle the franchise after single-handedly rebooting the Star Trek franchise. As it turns out, Affleck’s instincts about J.J. “killing it” were on point.
“J.J. would kill it. J.J. would crush it. He’s spectacular, but he would be great at anything. There are a lot of good directors out there. Naturally I would be inclined to get somebody who’s great at telling stories. You’ll never be able to recapture the story that was the initial three, because it’s just so legendary and iconic. I don’t know, I’m glad I don’t have that job. It’s a tough decision to make.”
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— Collider News (@ColliderNews) June 23, 2016
If Affleck would’ve said “yes” to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, there’s a 99.9 percent possibility that he wouldn’t have been able to play the role of the caped crusader in Batman v. Superman, Justice League, and now his own solo Batman film. Before Ben’s name was announced, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Jon Hamm, and Josh Brolin were in serious contention for the role.
Do you think Ben Affleck could’ve made a successful Star Wars movie? Are you glad he took the role of Batman on instead?
[Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images]