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Ben Affleck steps down as director of The Batman

Batfleck, out

By | Danny Dunn

Ben Affleck has decided not to direct the new Batman solo film that is set to release sometime in 2018. There have been multiple rumors of script issues and the possibility that the movie could get its release date pushed back. This could prove bad for the DC extended universe?

The last couple of movies in the DC Extended Universe, such as “Batman V Superman”, “Dawn Of Justice”, and “Suicide Squad”, have tried desperately to create a world of their own. It is similar to that of what Marvel is doing with the Avengers movies and their Marvel Cinematic Universe. 

DC has not quite found the same success as Marvel, mainly because they have rushed to get their movies out there and did not take enough time to go through and develop their characters. For example, Marvel had solo films for a majority of the Avengers before bringing them together. Meanwhile DC has introduced half of the Justice League characters using E-mail. Wonder Woman sits down at a computer in Batman V Superman, opens an E-mail from Bruce Wayne that contains video clips of The Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg, and that is how they are introduced into the DC universe. 

At first I thought Ben Affleck stepping down as director of ‘The Batman” spelled doom for the DC Extended Universe, but then I gave it some thought. Affleck is starring in the film and if half of his efforts were also going to directing the film, his portrayal of Bruce Wayne/Batman might take a hit. He has already shown that he can be a solid Batman without directing from his performance in “Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice”. 

Of course, I am not oblivious to the other side of the coin either. Affleck might have been stepping down as director because of the multiple script issues that were reported and he didn’t want to be the director and star of a sinking ship. But I do not think this is the case, I just think Affleck did not want to get burnt out by doing both jobs.

“The Batman” is currently without a director, which means we can speculate who is going to be the next director. The number one option to me has to be Zack Snyder. All of his DC movies thus far have had that dark tone that we have come to expect in Batman movies, unfortunately Snyder’s movies have mainly been focused on Superman. A second option is Christopher Nolan, director of The Dark Knight trilogy. He knows how to make a brilliant contained Batman movie, I am not sure how he would do making one for this bigger DC universe. 

DC needs to get this hire right if they want to mirror any of the lasting success that Marvel has had. They are relying heavily on the films coming out this year, “Wonder Woman” and “Justice League” to hopefully restore the DC Extended Universe into something more than just watchable. I have to say I am not overly optimistic about those films, or “The Batman” director hire, but for the sake of our own entertainment, please DC get this right.

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