After much speculation and rumor-spreading, it was officially confirmed on April 12 at CinemaCon that Ben Affleck will not only co-write, but also direct and star in a standalone “Batman” movie. The latest installment in the franchise hasn’t been especially well-received by fans or critics alike, box-office returns notwithstanding, but Affleck’s performance as the Caped Crusader in “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” was singled out by many as one of its highlights. That, coupled with his impressive track record behind the camera (including “Gone Baby Gone” and “Argo”), should make this welcome news for even the most difficult-to-please superhero fans.
Precise details from Warner Bros. CEO and chairman Kevin Tsujihara’s statement at the annual gathering of theater owners in Las Vegas are scarce, but it is already known that DC Comics COO Geoff Johns will be sharing script duties with Batfleck. There are few certainties on the mean streets of Gotham — other than Batman’s parents dying, that is — which means that the timeline is murky as well. WB has slated two untitled DC films for release on October 5, 2018 and November 1, 2019, however, so the smart money’s on this taking one of those slots.
The announcement comes as part of the expanding DC Comics universe, which also includes this summer’s buzzed-about “Suicide Squad.” Confirmation of one detail can only lead to more speculation as to all others, of course, so expect any number of theories as to who Batman will be fighting and just how dark and gritty this next chapter will be in the months and years to come.
Watch: ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ Trailer