It looks like Ben Affleck (“Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice”) is still on Matt Reeves’ chopping block. The “War for the Planet of the Apes” director recently took over the solo “Batman” film’s helm from Affleck himself, who stepped down in order to give the role “the best performance I can give.” Reeves also dumped the script Affleck and Geoff Johns (“The Flash”) had written, completely going back to the drawing board, and Reeves may now recast Batman altogether.
Collider’s John Campea, who was the first to suggest that Affleck wants to leave his role as Batman, revealed on his eponymous show that a Hollywood producer had told him of a mystery actor “who Matt Reeves wants as Batman.” According to CBR, another Hollywood insider told him there’s been “no movement” to recast the role as of yet, but “Matt does want him.” Campea later revealed that Jake Gyllenhaal (“Nightcrawler”) was the mystery actor who’s already met with Reeves; Gyllenhaal had previously auditioned for Christopher Nolan’s “Batman Begins” for Batman. He also suggested that Affleck’s departure was decided earlier this year, with Warner Bros. waiting until “Justice League” premiered to avoid bad press. (See that reveal below.)
Rumors had previously swelled after Affleck’s brother Casey said in an interview with WEEI Sports Radio that his brother wouldn’t be doing the “Batman” solo film at all. While the younger Affleck tried to walk back his comments, the slip didn’t help matters. There’s been continued uncertainty behind Affleck’s future as the Dark Knight, with producer Charles Roven saying in an ABC interview, “They’re retooling the script, so I can’t really say anything for certain.”
Affleck himself has acknowledged his own uncertainty with doing the “Batman” solo film, telling USA Today:
[The new “Batman” movie] is something I’m contemplating. You don’t do it forever, so I want to find a graceful and cool way to segue out of it.”
Affleck previously told the “Justice League” Comic Con panel audience he would do the role “as long as DC wanted him there,” but perhaps things have changed. Has the time come for Affleck to step down, or will he sign up for one last film?
If Campea decides to leak who Reeves’ mystery actor is, we’ll be sure to update you. For now, catch Affleck as Batman in DC’s “Justice League,” which opens Friday, Nov. 17. Watch the trailer below.