So in case anyone has been feeling a bit low as a result of our current political unrest, please read this sitting down. In the latest edition of “signs of the American apocalypse” we have recently learned that Ben Affleck no longer has plans to direct the stand alone Batman film, thus ruining american superhero cinema for geeks everywhere! What gives Batfleck?! It was just a few days ago you said you were still helming the project, the script just had to be right, and now you’re bailing on us? You’re just leaving us flapping in the breeze? We’re flapping in the breeze Ben!
Affleck reasoned his departure in a recent statement where he said “Performing this role demands focus, passion and the very best performance I can give. It has become clear that I cannot do both jobs to the level they require. Together with the studio, I have decided to find a partner in a director who will collaborate with me on this massive film. I am still in this, and we are making it, but we are currently looking for a director. I remain extremely committed to this project, and look forward to bringing this to life for fans around the world.”
While comic fans try to remove there jaws from the floor, we’re here wondering just how hard the failure of Live by Night is looming in his mind. This is, in no uncertain terms, a bad look for Warner Bros. With recent duds Suicide Squad and BvS, who-while financially successful, were critically panned, and rightly so, this latest news just brings legitimacy to the rumors that this studio had literally no idea what the hell they’re doing at all. Even with all that, the only positive that can be discerned from this is that it’s important to have a director that is passionate and excited to sink his teeth into the material, and it has become apparent that Affleck was not. If he thinks his time and talent are better served in from of the camera, then okay, he’s earned that trust.
So now the question remains, who is going to direct this damn thing? Gavin O’Conner is definitely a good bet. He’s worked with Affleck before with 2016’s The Accountant, and has seen critical success with Warrior. O’Conner is pretty busy though. He is currently attached to the Green Hornet reboot, and is taking Matt Damon’s place to helm the upcoming Father Daughter Time. We also know George Miller has been discussing the possibility of getting in the superhero game, but Batman doesn’t seem like it would fit his style. Either way, the word on the script is that it’s a mess and that is a big reason why Affleck has bowed out, so they have to focus on fixing that first.
Warners is reportedly actively seeking a replacement, so we might here something sooner than later, especially since this movie is inching closer to production every day.