With those box office returns essentially paving the way for “Justice League” Star Ben Affleck to (officially) exit the DCEU (even though, just quietly, we all know he gave his parking spot at Warner Bros a few months ago), the search – if even covertly – is on to find a new Caped Crusader to replace the disgruntled departee as the new Batman.
While recent scuttlebut suggests that Jake Gyllenhaal has the role in the bag (and apparently the actor is keen too, it’s the studio that aren’t quite convinced yet) there’s picketing to get Michael Keaton reinstated as the Batman. Makes sense, too. Keaton, now in his late ‘60s, is the perfect age to play the veteran, grizzled Detective of Matt Reeves’ “The Batman”. Sure, it might be rather odd to see the old new Batman fighting alongside much younger superheroes like Henry ‘Moustache Ride’ Cavill and Gal ‘No thanks, Henry’ Gadot, it would be a super treat to see one of the most popular “Batman” actors of our cinematic times reprise his role all these years later.
Keaton originally left the role of Batman – after 1992’s “Batman Returns” – because he wanted the series to go deeper, darker and less comic book-y.. which is where things ultimately headed.
While Warner Bros haven’t publicly expressed interest in having Keaton return, many online have. Hopefully that counts for something and the brass don’t discount the idea.
It’s interesting to note that “Justice League” even includes numerous nods to Tim Burton’s “Batman” movie, essentially suggesting that Affleck and Keaton are playing the same version of the character. Aside from using Danny Elfman’s theme from the 1989 movie, “Justice League” also references Events in “Batman Returns” (1992). Yet, as Screen Rant point out, the fly in the soup of this whole theory is the fact that Keaton’s Batman took Jack Nicholson’s Joker down, permanently, in the original 1989 movie – and in the Affleck movies, the Joker (Jared Leto) is still very much alive, kicking and causing havoc.
Alas, between Gyllenhaal, Keaton and the umptewn other capable actors that would likely jump at the chance to play Batman, Warner’s really has their pick of the litter.
Meanwhile, “Shazam” director David F.Sandberg has taken to Instagram to tease a possible appearance by the Caped Crusader in the upcoming adaptation of the DC comic title. While it could be nothing, and Sandberg could simply be messing with fans, his post may also be his way of letting punters know to expect an appearance by Batman in his film – possibly even before “The Batman” comes to be.