Way back in 2013, when it was first announced that Ben Affleck would be taking on the role of Bruce Wayne in a sequel to Man of Steel, the casting was met with vicious backlash. “Don’t cast him! He’ll ruin the movie!” they all said. And then, when the #Film was released earlier this year, Affleck’s Batman turned out to be just about the only good thing in it. Some critics even went so far as to say it was the best portrayal of Batman of all time.
So, now that the future of DC’s response to the MCU doesn’t look all that promising because it’s kicked off with an overstuffed, unnecessarily dark mess leading into a Justice League film (spoiler alert!) without Superman, I’m looking to the one saving grace for any kind of anticipation. For starters, we know Batman will appear in Suicide Squad later this year, probably in a cameo capacity (and his appearance in the film has been described by those involved as “freaking scary”), and he’ll be featured more prominently in years to come in Justice League and its sequels, as well as the possibility of some crossing over with other characters’ solo films.
There’s bound to be a solo Batman film eventually. It’s not necessary for the story anymore as the character’s been introduced into this universe, but from a business perspective, an unnecessary Batman film will gross five times as much as the necessary Flash film that’s about to come out.
As for the film itself, it could easily be a prequel. Batman v Superman left a lot of gaps, like a dead Robin with his costume in a glass display case in the Batcave and a message teasing Bats spray-painted on it by the Joker. This might get cleared up in Suicide Squad, depending on whether or not it’s set before BvS and/or contains flashback scenes. BvS had flashbacks, so we know it’s not stylistically out of character for the franchise. Another thing, what’s up with Wayne Manor? It’s been hollowed out, burnt to a crisp, and left in ruins in a big, open plain surrounded by reeds and tall grass. And his dad might be alive, since we never saw him die, and in fact, we saw him reach out his arms and say, “Martha!” instead of dying, and we only ever saw Martha’s grave coincidentally. Anyway, I might be grasping at straws there but it has me very curious.
Affleck is apparently very keen to get involved in the creative process. Rumour has it he did some rewrites on the Batman v Superman script in his costume, although he denies it. He has, however, confirmed that he wants to direct himself in a Batman film, and has written an entire Batman screenplay on spec (in other words, no one asked him to). If there’s one thing we learned from BvS about the future of the DC Extended Universe, it’s that the more Affleck, the better, so this is good news. It sets us up nicely for a banger standalone Batman flick.
Nothing’s been revealed about the plot, but the grapevine has it Affleck wrote the script with Geoff Johns. Johns is Chief Creative Officer at DC Comics (a.k.a. the funnest job in the world) and he also writes for comics and TV. His only previous film work is on the team behind Green Lantern, which doesn’t exactly put him in good stead, but he also worked on Arrow and The Flash, so his resume’s a mixed bag. I’m sure Johns’ knowledge of the comics world combined with Affleck’s ability to craft an excellent screenplay (as evidenced in Good Will Hunting, Gone Baby Gone and The Town, all fantastic) will combine to make a wonderful Batman movie.
Affleck’s interpretation of Batman so far has been that he’s a very angry man who likes to yell. Hopefully by writing and directing his own Batman film, he’ll dig deeper into the other dimensions of the character, and the best portrayal of Batman will become ever better. That’s best case. #Celebrities #Cinema