It's a confusing time for fans of Ben Affleck's turn as Batman in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). Not only are rumors about the award-winning actor/director leaving the DC shared cinematic universe rampant, but they seem to be intensifying with each passing day. And Ben's own brother, actor Casey Affleck, didn't help matters when he claimed that Ben was "not going to do The Batman" during an interview.
With so much confusion in the air, Affleck's camp has finally decided to clear up matters before things get even more dizzying for those trying to keep track of Batman's future in the DCEU.
Ben Affleck Will (Not) Be The Batman
Speaking to BuzzFeed News, a representative for #CaseyAffleck clarified that the award-winning Manchester by the Sea actor was just messing around when he claimed that his older brother was calling it quits on #Batman:
"[Casey Affleck] was having fun with the folks at the Red Sox game — where he threw out the first pitch in support of the Jimmy Fund — and not speaking from a place of firsthand knowledge.”
As a follow-up, an agent speaking on behalf of #BenAffleck also told BuzzFeed News that the star and director of critically-acclaimed films such as Argo and The Town is sticking with the #DCEU for the long haul:
"He will continue to be Batman as long as the studio will have him.”
Should the last statement be true, this just solidifies the reassurances that Ben gave during this year's San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC). When he sat down with Entertainment Weekly after his SDCC panel, the latest Batman actor said that his collaborative efforts with Warner Brothers and the DCEU have yet to end:
"I've done the two movies. I've always intended on doing a third if Warner Brothers wants to make it. Certainly, if the Batphone rings, I will answer. [...] I’d love to do it as long as they’ll have me. Eventually it’ll be somebody else, and I’m sure they’ll get somebody great. But while I’m doing it, I’m going to do the best job I can, and really appreciate how lucky I am."
Is Ben Affleck The Dark Knight Or Not?
The rumors of Affleck's desire to leave cape and cowl arguably began in the aftermath of the DCEU's rocky start. Following the polarizing reception of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice — and with the supposed creative differences in the conceptualization of The Batman and the lengthy reshoots of Justice League — Affleck's rumored split from DC seemed justifiable and logical.
Adding fuel to the fire was the confirmation of a live-action adaptation of the continuity-altering Flashpoint arc from the comics. Sharp-eyed DC readers and fans fear that the upcoming Flash movie may reboot the DCEU and remove Affleck's Batman in the process. Given the Flashpoint comics' reputation, this is far from a baseless assumption.
This in turn caused concern among fans of Affleck's portrayal of Batman, since "BatFleck" is considered to be one of the best parts of the DCEU's divisive crossover movie. Some would even go as far as saying that BatFleck was the saving grace of Batman v Superman, despite his radically (and violently) different characterization when compared to his comic book counterpart.
While the actor has stated that, contrary to rumors, he loves protecting Gotham because the role of Batman is "fucking amazing," his long-term future in the DCEU still remains a mystery. Hopefully, Affleck sticks around longer as Batman since his short, but already iconic, take on the popular character deserves a lot more than just a pair of movies and a cameo in Suicide Squad.
Do you think Ben Affleck will be Batman for a longer time, or do you think he's calling it quits? Do you like his take on the character? Share your thoughts in the comments below.