Studios don’t generally like it when a big budget, tentpole film that they are putting a lot of money behind has some speed bumps. Generally, they like things to run as smoothly as possible so that positive word of mouth remains positive. The last thing they want is to craft this perfect little bow of film, only to have the bow unravel during production, or worse, before the release.
So it probably gave Warner Bros. and DC Films a fair amount of stomach pains when Ben Affleck, very publicly, stepped out of the director’s chair on The Batman. The reason he gave was that he didn’t feel he could do both jobs. This makes sense as playing a superhero in a movie one is directing, is probably much harder than playing the Tony Mendez character in Argo.
However, Hollywood, and more specifically, the media, can’t just accept Affleck’s reasoning. We feel that there must be something bigger afoot. Suddenly, it seemed like no matter what shape the script was in, The Batman had to be headed for the toilet. Thankfully, the hiring of Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) seems to have quelled this.
There are still questions circling The Batman. When will it shoot? When will it be released? Who else is going to be in The Batman? Will the movie even be called The Batman? What will the story be?
Now, these questions are still up in the air but it seems like they will eventually have answers. Right now, it seemed prudent to look to Ben Affleck to see what he could do to help “save” this film any more unwanted speculation. Having already lived through a high profile media shellacking (and the flops that come with it), it seemed prudent to present 7 things Ben Affleck can do to save The Batman. Nothing on this list is a guarantee, but it doesn’t seem like these suggestions will hurt the film.
Ben Affleck is a surprisingly refreshing interview. I say that because while most actors at his level are keen on giving canned responses, Affleck often goes to the other way. He even has positions (see his comments after he made Argo on the Middle East situation) that could be deemed unpopular. We don’t see this because actors like Ben Affleck often play it safe. At his best we get a thoughtful artist who isn’t afraid to give his opinions regardless of the consequences. At it’s worst we get the situation with JLo and movie like Gigli. At this moment, Ben Affleck, after withdrawing from directing The Batman, needs to return to a bit of a secluded state. This sort of had to happen. Affleck was on top of the world after Argo. A film he directed landed him the Best Picture Oscar. The world was really his. Then Affleck starred in Gone Girl for David Fincher, and only cemented his newly minted greatness. Of course, this is where the train had to go off the tracks. There was Batman v Superman, The Accountant, and the colossal flop that was Live By Night. What we don’t need to see is more Ben Affleck. Not in tabloids, not on magazine covers, nowhere but the silver screen. He needs to let the mystique around himself build up. Basically, you wanna make sure The Batman is the best film it can be? Ben Affleck needs to become as mysterious as the character he is playing.