WB and DC reportedly heart Ben Affleck, enough to plan a bat-trilogy around him
I try to limit the number of stories we run that are purely based on rumors, but every once in a while one is interesting enough, and it rings so true, that it’s worth covering. That said, take this with a grain of salt, at least for the moment.
A new rumor coming from several sources, including the generally reliable Den of Geek, is claiming that Warner Bros. was so impressed with Ben Affleck’s turn as Batman in the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice that it wants to lock him down to a long term deal built around three standalone Batman films (and very likley several cameos on other DC films as well).
While this is still all rumor, it is further buoyed by two other reports.
Multiple sources are claiming that WB insiders said that there was a recent screening of Batman v Superman that resulted in a standing ovation. The studio brass were so impressed that they quickly reached out to Affleck. This is probably true. In fact, if anything, it feels like a planted story.
Screenings like this are generally more positively received than most, given that the people in attendance are usually hand picked. Still, no one threw up and died or anything, which is a good sign. The standing ovation is probably a little overly generous, but the studio did seem to be pleased. That being the case, it is absolutely in the film’s favor to “leak” that news. If it hadn’t gone well, you probably wouldn’t have heard a word, or the film might have been sent back for reshoots like Fantastic Four was.
The other piece of evidence is that two of Affleck’s other upcoming films, Accountant and Live by Night, both of which are at WB, were both pushed back. Variety is assuming that the move was to give the films more time to polish (and better position them for award season), but there may be more to it.
If WB is planning a new Bat-fleck trilogy, it will need to begin plotting things out now to make the most of the shared universe WB and DC are building.
Another good reason to think there might be something to this rumor is that Affleck is playing Batman, and Batman films tend to make a ton of money.If the studio didn’t like Affleck, it would probably have phased him out and tried with someone else. Batman is too valuable to not have films on the way.
It was always a little odd that when WB and DC revealed their movie slate for the rest of the decade it was Batman-free (not counting joint films, like Justice League). When another unconfirmed report claimed that Affleck would be starring and directing a solo Bat-film, it made sense. Pushing that to a trilogy still makes sense.
So for now, take this all with salt and all, but given that WB likes money, it would fit.