While the comic book ouija board does point to an exit, it still hasn’t been officially confirmed whether or not Ben Affleck will wear the Bat codpiece for the long-gestating “The Batman”. And let’s be real here, that question likely won’t be answered until “Justice League” – in which Affleck plays Batman for the second time – has a chance to open (it starts Friday). Since it’s tracking reasonably well, expect the studio to keep a lid on that announcement for a few weeks at least.
Smart though, seems Warner Bros and “The Batman” helmer Matt Reeves are quietly considering replacements for if and when Affleck decides he’s departing Gotham City.
According to Screen Crush’s John Campea, Jake Gyllenhaal – who was actually a frontrunner for Batman a few years back, if you’ll recall – is Reeves’ top pick to take over the rubber suit.
“I’m hesitant to say anything, but I talked to a Hollywood producer yesterday and they gave me the name of who Matt Reeves wants [to replace Ben Affleck] as Batman. And, I’ve got to be honest with you, that name caught me a little bit by surprise. I called somebody else later in the day, saying: ‘Hey, I heard this, is there any validity to this?’ And they said: ‘Well, Matt does want him…’ But that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. There’s been no movement or anything like that.”
According to Campea, “The Batman” won’t be a reboot – it’ll simply be of a case of switching one actor for another, but still continuing on with the journey of the Batman/Bruce Wayne we first met in “Batman v Superman : Dawn of Justice”.
Gyllenhaal, fought for the role of Batman about a decade ago when Christopher Nolan auditioned him for “Batman Begins” (he had also gone up for Spider-Man).
“I believe whatever happens, happens for good. I was definitely open to both the roles (of Spider- Man and Batman),” Gyllenhaal admitted. “However at a certain point you realise there is always someone more interesting, talented and ready to do the role. In any case, you are not going to get every role you go for. So you can say I neither rue nor am I thankful for having not worked on these superhero films.”
Gyllenhaal might now be the right age, have the statue, and be of the right bulk, to pull it off now (coincidentally, Jake’s sister Maggie ended up playing Batman’s love interest in Nolan’s second Batman film “The Dark Knight”).
No deal has been made, says Campea, but discussions have said to have taken place – which, if you ask me, sounds a lot like confirmation that Affleck has no plans to return for the role.
“The Batman”, which has been retooled and rehauled several times now, is said to be a new trilogy fixing on the DC detectie. Joe Manganiello had been hired to play Deathstroke in the film, but it’s unsure whether the character will appear in that film now or his own solo vehicle.