There have been rumblings emanating from the Batcave for almost a year now that Ben Affleck wants to ditch the cape and cowl and move on from the role of Batman. The most recent talk was started by Affleck himself, who stated that he wants ‘to find a graceful and cool way to segue out of it’. He said that whilst promoting Justice League, his latest turn as the Dark Knight, which has underperformed at the box office during its opening weekend in the US ($93 million, when $110 was hoped for).
Affleck was signed to star (and originally write and direct) The Batman, a solo Batman adventure that is now set to be helmed by Matt Reeves. However, now comes news (via John Campea) that Reeves might have another actor in the frame for the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman – none other than Jake Gyllenhaal.
Sometimes these rumours feel false, but this one doesn’t – and here’s why:
- Gyllenhaal has some form (albeit tangentially) with the superhero genre – he was in the frame to replace Tobey Maguire when salary negotiations for Spider-Man 2 hit rocky waters in the early noughties. More importantly, he also auditioned for the Batman role in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins.
- While a well respected actor, Gyllenhaal could use a bonafide hit: his last 4 films grossed $90 million in the US – combined! The Batman franchise should give him the franchise stability to make edgier fare between cape gigs.
- There are so many rumours circling Ben Affleck and Batman that there must be something to them – and the critical and financial disappoint of Justice League is putting a lot of negative focus on Affleck – and why would he want all that hassle?
- Gyllenhaal has the look and physicality to pull off the role – and as an actor he is drawn to dark and brooding roles. Batman is dark and brooding.
What are Movies In Focus’ thoughts on all this? I’d rather have Ben Affleck stay on in the role (I’ve made my peace that he’s likely gone) – but Jake Gyllenhaal as Batman – sure, why not? I can live with that choice.
Source: John Campea