In recent years, Ben Affleck has earned high marks for his acting performances in films such as Gone Girl, The Accountant, and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, but the true catalyst to his career resurgence was his emergence as an elite director. Starting with the 2007 drama Gone Baby Gone, Affleck has established himself as a force behind the camera, winning much praise for The Town and Best Picture winner Argo< /em>. His next directorial effort, Prohibition crime piece Live by Night, is set up for an Oscar run this awards season and generated much excitement following the release of its trailer.
The next project for Affleck the Director is The Batman, the first standalone vehicle for Affleck’s version of the Caped Crusader in the DC Extended Universe. Affleck is also co-writing the script with DC’s own Geoff Johns, and it’s a process he’s taking very seriously. Over the summer, Affleck stated that he wouldn’t move forward on the film until he was completely happy with the screenplay, which is still in development. As someone who’s been through plenty of ups and downs, Affleck understands the magnitude of The Batman and won’t approach his responsibilities lightly.
In an interview with IGN (hat tip Batman News), Affleck discussed how the Batman script is coming along, detailing his mindset while writing it:
“Last night I spent (time) working on the script. I’m in full-on ‘trying to get it right mode’. It’s not the kind of movie that you can fail quietly at. You have to really be sure that I have something that I feel really confident about before we go forward.”
This is great to hear and very encouraging for DC fans. While certain elements of the three DCEU features released to date have been well-received (including Batfleck), the films as a whole have proven to be extremely divisive. In particular, their stories have been met with criticism, as some viewers believe the narratives are too disjointed. The franchise is in desperate need of a critical hit to re-establish forward momentum, and Affleck is smart to take his time to make sure The Batman is of the best quality possible. As his co-star J.K. Simmons (who plays Commissioner Gordon in the DCEU) said, Affleck is a great moviemaker who has tremendous knowledge of directing, writing, and acting. His sizable involvement with The Batman should inspire confidence, as he’s certainly proven himself time and time again.
Affleck’s patience is a virtue that should be commended, but he does have a deadline so The Batman can remain on track. Joe Manganiello, who’s on board to play the villain Deathstroke, stated that production will start in spring 2017. Additionally, Warner Bros. has said the film is about 18 months out, though the studio still has not given it an official release date. In all likelihood, Affleck and Johns will have their screenplay finished in a matter of months, hopefully delivering another compelling Batman story for the big screen. Especially after the Dark Knight stole the show in Dawn of Justice, there’s much anticipation for his solo outing.
As of this writing, The Batman does not have a release date. We’ll keep you posted on the updates.