Ben Affleck Steps Down as Director of The Batman

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Just a few days after learning that Ben Affleck’s latest film Live By Night will result in a $75 million loss for Warner Brothers, it appears that the unfortunate flop is starting to have some repercussions on his future projects. Affleck is apparently stepping down as the director of the next DC standalone Batman movie, entitled The Batman, which he had been attached to helm for a while now. It is said to have been a mutual decision between himself and the higher-ups at Warner Brothers “solely made based on what’s best for the project.” He will still star in the film and remains involved as a producer as well. Ben Affleck had this to say about the announcement:


“There are certain characters who hold a special place in the hearts of millions… Performing this role demands focus, passion and the very best performance I can give. It has become clear that I cannot do both jobs to the level they require. Together with the studio, I have decided to find a partner in a director who will collaborate with me on this massive film. I am still in this, and we are making it, but we are currently looking for a director. I remain extremely committed to this project, and look forward to bringing this to life for fans around the world.”

Cue the sad Ben Affleck memes. Word on the street is that they are already looking at other directors for the project, which is believed to be aiming for a 2018 release date. Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) is rumoured to be on the shortlist. It’s too bad that Affleck will not get a shot at directing this and I find it hard to believe that Live By Night had nothing to do with it. It either shook his confidence in himself as a filmmaker or the studio’s confidence in his ability to do multiple jobs at once, but he still seemingly had what it takes to turn Batman into a gritty crime flick. That being said, I suppose there aren’t very many people who have simultaneously directed and starred in blockbusters of this magnitude. Are you disappointed by this news? Who would you like to see direct The Batman instead?

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  • David Fincher please!

  • Peter Harrison

    David Lynch

  • Newtman98

    Right now Brett Ratner is wearing a batman costume speeding towards the DC offices in his lambo.

  • Fincher deserves better!

  • 1138sw

    Now if only BA would leave the Batman role…nah I guess that it’s to much to ask..oh well.

    I wonder if this could be a partial backlash to the critical trouncing B vs S received. It did well enough box office wise ($873,260,194) though, but I don’t think it did well enough for the WB excutives who think were expecting box office billions. This might have something to do with BA demotion as did the box office of Live By Night.

    BA is a good director but his tendencies to want to be a movie star, I think, handicap him as a director. I wish he would just stick directing and just forget the whole acting shtick.

  • Frank

    Shitty week for the DCEU when it was also announced that The Flash is getting a page one re-write. If this was the studio’s decision based off of the performance of Live by Night then they are crazy. An Affleck-directed Batman was one of the bright spots in the extended universe. I would have to believe that it was his decision to step down, but who knows.

    I guess this means Zack Snyder can now direct.

  • frankw35

    Not that I think Affleck is the best fit for this kind of movie but I don’t think the box office failure of Live by Night should be the determiner here…I thought the problem with that was script and pacing, not direction. He’s shown he’s a pretty good director with the right material.

  • 9No

    Based on his previous statements regarding the development of Batman, he didn’t seem overtly enthusiastic to do it anymore. He kept complaining that everyone was asking him about the release date, and maybe he just got nervous by the enormous expectations? I’m sure the pressure is huge, which is why he might have regretted it..?