Ben Affleck is donning the Batman cowl one last time as Vanity Fair is reporting that the Batman V Superman actor will be suiting up for Warner Brothers upcoming The Flash film.
Affleck will be joining Michael Keaton, who will also be reprising his role as Gotham City’s Caped Crusader from his two films with director Tim Burton in the late 1980s/early `90s.
The announcement comes two days before Warner Brothers big online DC FanDome streaming event which will feature panels for all of the DC Comics related film and television projects.
Ezra Miller will be headlining The Flash as scientist Barry Allen, who after he is dosed with chemicals and simultaneously hit by lightening, gains the ability to move and think at super speed. Miller first appeared in Warner Brothers DC Comics Expanded Universe franchise of films in Batman V Superman and made an additional cameo in Suicide Squad before stepping up to a co-lead role in Justice League.
In an interview with VF, Flash director Andy Muschietti revealed that the film’s plot is based on an adaptation of DC’s 2011 Flashpoint comic book storyline and will involve the multiverse – a series of alternate versions of Earth with differing takes on its superheroes for those of you unversed in comic book astrophysics.
Outside of providing an anchor of sorts for Miller’s Barry to start off with before he begins to meet alternate versions of Batman, Muschietti also stated that it was important to have Affleck back because of his strong take on the character.
His Batman has a dichotomy that is very strong, which is his masculinity—because of the way he looks, and the imposing figure that he has, and his jawline — but he’s also very vulnerable. He knows how to deliver from the inside out, that vulnerability. He just needs a story that allows him to bring that contrast, that balance.
He’s a very substantial part of the emotional impact of the movie. The interaction and relationship between Barry and ‘Affleck’s Wayne will bring an emotional level that we haven’t seen before. It’s Barry’s movie, it’s Barry’s story, but their characters are more related than we think. They both lost their mothers to murder, and that’s one of the emotional vessels of the movie. That’s where the Affleck Batman kicks in.
Muschietti did concede that he was concerned that he would not be able to get Affleck to return to the role because at the time he had originally been playing Batman his marriage was dissolving and he was battling alcoholism. But after being shown the script last week, he reports that Affleck agreed to sign on.
Affleck’s casting seems to suggest that just about anything is on the table now in terms of where this film could conceivably go. Might we see more Batman actors like George Clooney for example coming back to cowl? Director Matt Reeves is currently gearing up to return to production on his reboot of the character, titled simply The Batman, with Robert Pattinson in the lead role of Bruce Wayne/ Batman. Perhaps he could show up in The Flash, thus settling debate among fans as to where in the greater scheme of things his version of the character fits in?
And does it just have to be multiple Batmans showing up? Could we be seeing multiple incarnations of other heroes, maybe even versions of the Flash himself. Remember last winter’s big CW superhero crossover event Crisis On Infinite Earths which saw the television version of the Flash (Grant Gustin) momentarily cross paths with Miller’s version? Maybe we’ll Miller’s Flash’s side of that encounter. The possibilities are, dare we say, infinite.