So yesterday, I told you all the bad news regarding Warner Brothers decision to scrap the Justice League screenplay by Will Beall, due to its sickly, baby poo-like stench turning off quality directors. Now word has come down from Latino Review that one of those directors who ran away screaming from the awful screenplay was Argo director, and one-time Kevin Smith-Jersey Universe regular, Ben Affleck. The real interesting aspect of this news is that not only did DC/Warners desperately want Affleck to direct the film, they also wanted him to play Bruce Wayne/Batman as well!
The success of Gone Baby Gone, The Town, and now the Oscar-nominated Argo, has truly propelled Affleck to top of the “most-wanted” directors list. We already know that he was targeted by Kathleen Kennedy for the Star Wars Episode VII gig before JJ Abrams finally relented, and now he’s passed on another giant genre blockbuster. If Affleck had donned the cape and cowl of the Dark Knight, that would’ve given him a trifecta of superhero roles in his career — he played Daredevil in the oft-lambasted 2002 film, and he kinda-sorta played Superman in the George Reeves biopic Hollywoodland (which is an underrated little film that’s worth checking out).
Warners interest in Affleck for the Batman role might actually shed some light on how they planned on approaching the character. Affleck is 40, so it’s possible the Bruce Wayne in the Justice League script was an older Batman who had already been fighting crime on the streets of Gotham for over a decade, building up his massive rogues gallery. Who knows, he may have even been aware of Superman or even worked with him and the other heroes a few times by the time the League joined forces to stop Darkseid in the film. But, now that the screenplay has been burned to ash by the Warner Brothers top brass, it’s all moot. Affleck as Batman isn’t the worst idea I’ve ever heard, and I’m sure he’d do fine, but to me, he’s far more exciting and has much more talent to offer the world behind the camera a this stage in his career.