Those who’ve followed the story of Ben Affleck and his relationship with the role of Batman know it took a toll on him. When Ben Affleck spoke about why he stopped being Batman, he said that he both lost excitement for the role and said it affected his sobriety. With such personal reasons, it remained a safe assumption that Ben Affleck wore the Bat-suit for the last time. Apparently, after agreeing to release the Snyder Cut of Justice League on HBO Max, anything is possible when it comes to the DC Extended Universe. A new report from Anthony Breznican reveals that Ben Affleck will return as Batman for the forthcoming Flash movie. As for whether this is true or not, it seems to be because the source is Andy Muschietti, the director.
The report also seems to contain confirmation that the Flash film will introduce the DC Multiverse to the cinematic side of things. He also said that Affleck’s return is crucial for the introduction of Michael Keaton’s Batman. Both of these bat-actors have what’s called a “substantial” role in the report. Muschietti is very excited to have Affleck joining the film, for a number of reasons.
As he told Vanity Fair:
“His Batman has a dichotomy that is very strong, which is his masculinity…but he’s also very vulnerable…. He knows how to deliver from the inside out, that vulnerability. He just needs a story that allows him to bring that contrast, that balance.
“He’s a very substantial part of the emotional impact of the movie. The interaction and relationship between Barry and Affleck’s Wayne will bring an emotional level that we haven’t seen before.”
The It: Chapter Two director added that the film is still very centered on Ezra Miller’s Barry Allen. The bond that character shares with Affleck’s Batman is very deep, since both lost their mothers to crime. Muschietti worried introducing another “original” Batman wouldn’t work without Affleck. This is Barry’s “baseline” Batman, and the multiverse allows the DCEU to state, definitively, that all iterations of this character are “valid.” Also, Muschietti appreciates that Affleck is himself an accomplished director. “He understands,” Muschietti told Breznican.
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40 years ago my brother was a kid with an awkward stance and an overly tucked-in batman shirt. But he grew up, and he eventually got the whole suit. And then things went downhill fast. I am back to red cords and Benji has no bat suit. But wisdom comes with winters, and today Ben turned 48. And he is doing great! Benson, if you are feeling old- because you are- and you notice things are falling apart a little on your body- because you are so old- imagine how John Glenn felt. He said, “As I hurtled through space one thought kept crossing my mind- every part of this rocket was supplied by the lowest bidder.” Happy Birthday, champ! Keep going! You ain’t heavy.
As for the personal toll that playing Batman took on his life, Affleck appears to be in a better place today. Producer Barbara Muschietti told Breznican said that she worried about his response to the request to reprise the role because of his past comments. However, he’s apparently in a better place personally, which renewed the excitement he once had for the character. (In fact, his brother Casey recently shared a picture on Instagram showing Ben in an old-school Batman t-shirt.)
More announcements about this film and others in the DC pipeline are expected at DC FanDome, a virtual event happening on Saturday.
What do you think about the news that Ben Affleck will return as Batman for the Flash movie? Are you excited? Do you hope it’s for more than a one-off? Share your thoughts below.
Featured image via Warner Bros.
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.