Matt Reeves Reveals Why He Rejected Ben Affleck’s The Batman Script

Nearly a decade ago, Ben Affleck was cast as Bruce Wayne/Batman in the DC Extended Universe. He was later announced to co-write, produce, direct and star in The Batman, but left the project altogether.

Matt Reeves took over the project, and at one point, was even asked to helm Affleck’s original script, but decided to go in his direction instead.

Ben Affleck as Batman.

“I read a script that they had that was a totally valid take on the movie. It was very action-driven. It was very deeply connected to the DCEU, with other major characters from other movies and other comics popping up. I just knew that when I read it this particular script was not the way I’d want to do it,” noted Reeves.

“I said look, I think maybe I’m not the person for this,” added Reeves. “And I explained to them why I love this character. I told them that there have been so many great movies, but if I were to do this, I’d have to make it personal, so that I understood what I was going to do with it, so that I know where to put the camera so that I know what to tell the actors so that I know what the story should be.”

Reeves described Affleck’s script as ‘James Bond-ian’ and that he didn’t relate to it at all. It wasn’t the story that he has always envisioned for the character he loves since he was a kid. He later pitched an original idea to Warner Bros. and it was surprisingly accepted.

the batman

“This take, I told them, pointing at the script, is a totally valid and exciting take,” continued Reeves. “It is almost James Bond-ian, but it wasn’t something that I quite related to. ‘So what I’d love to do, if you’re interested, is I’d like to get involved and find a way to take the story and make it very, very personal and get to the place I want him to be, to make it a Batman story and give him the arc, and have the story rock him to his core.’ It wasn’t going to be another origin story, not with Ben already in the character. But that’s what I would do.”

When Affleck dropped out of the leading role, Reeves decided to cast Robert Pattinson as the new Caped Crusader and set his story in the Dark Knight’s second year. That said, The Batman will be completely separate from the DCEU, but it will have some HBO Max spinoff series featuring The Penguin and Gotham PD.

Most recently, an extended funeral church scene from the movie was released. Deemed as one of the longest superhero movies ever, The Batman is slated to release on 4 March 2022.

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