Ben Affleck regrets taking on Batman, doesn’t he? You can tell - just not bothered, really, anymore, is he? Probably got all excited when he read the first script, then had an adult fanboy moment when he put on the suit - this is gonna be great, I’m the Batman! But then, well, Batman Vs Superman happened, and I’m not using hyperbole when I say: not everybody liked it, did they?
I think after the backlash, Affleck checked out. No more Batman for him, thanks - just gotta get through Justice League and then I can bin it all off. And it looks like that’s what he’s doing - his original plan to direct and star in a solo Batman film has melted somewhat, it’s dripped down the George Forman into the collection tray and been rinsed down the sink.
First he booted the director’s chair out the window, and now it looks like he might be greasing himself out of the suit an’all.
And good old Commissioner Gordon (aka Gary Oldman) has a good idea on who he wants to replace the Bat Chin. Talking about the recasting, Oldman said:
“I would like to see someone like Joaquin Phoenix play it. This is no disrespect to Ben Affleck. I think it really depends on who is at the wheel that lifts it.”
I mean, sure, Phoenix is a top-drawer actor, and since his starring turn in the upcoming You Were Never Really Here, he knows a thing or two about vengeance, but he’s gonna have to get mighty swole to be convincing in the role.
He’s only 5ft 8, compared to Christian Bale’s 6ft and Affleck’s 6ft 2 - so he’s got a bit of growing to be done should he want to impose a threatening presence on the bad guys of Gotham.
Still, I doubt Gary Oldman has any say on the casting process, seeing as he has nothing to do with the film in any way - it would be like asking me who I think should play Batman (Barry Scott from the Cillit Bang advert, obviously).
Instead, it’s probably down to director Matt Reeves (Cloverfield), and early reports mention that he’s been talking to Jake Gyllenhaal (5ft 9 - guess this new Batman’s going to have to wear heels) about the role.
Either way, it’s all up in the air at the moment - Reeves hasn’t even finished the script, Affleck might still return, and Barry Scott’s slate is clean as a whistle, who knows what’s going to happen? Just bring us Wonder Woman 2 already.
(Image: Christian Sterk/Rex)