The rumor mill cannot quite decide whether or not Ben Affleck is planning to keep his role as Bruce wayne/Batman in the DC Extended Universe. Now, according to the most recent claims, he plans to jump ship before The Batman, the character’s solo film, is made, but he may stick around until after Flashpoint comes out in 2020.
According to Variety, Matt Reeves, who is currently scheduled to direct The Batman flick, is actively looking for Affleck’s replacement. None of this has been confirmed by the people involved or the studio, however.
The rumors about Affleck wanting to leave the DCEU have been circulating for a while, fueled by his memetically downcast expression during some interviews and the way that his Batman role distracted from his promotional tour for Live by Night. The fact that he was originally going to direct The Batman film, only to step aside and allow Reeves to take over, has not helped matters. Nevertheless, he has maintained in official statements that he intends to carry on with the part.
But if he was planning to leave, Flashpoint would be a potentially good role to finish off with. The film is centered around Barry Allen, aka the Flash, played by Ezra Miller. In trying to go back in time to prevent his mother’s murder, the super-fast superhero accidentally shatters time, creating a dystopian world where war between superpowered beings has left the Earth on the brink of destruction.
In the comics, the Flash manages to fix that dark timeline, but the process causes some new changes in its own right; this resulted in the New 52 continuity reboot, more or less. Many are wondering if Flashpoint could thus be a planned reboot of the DC Extended Universe, which, if one discounts the outlier ofWonder Woman, has been making less money with each entry. If they go that route, it would be the perfect time to get a new, possibly younger actor to fill Affleck’s bat-boots.
Whether or not Flashpoint is actually intended as a cosmic reset, and whether or not Affleck wants to take advantage of that, remains unconfirmed at this time. Given the failure of Justice League, however, Affleck may be planning to make a decision soon.