Ben Affleck was cast by Zack Snyder in the iconic role of the Batman, first in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and subsequently in Justice League. The actor was slated to reprise the role further, including in a series of standalone films, at least the first of which would be written and directed by Affleck himself. As we know now, that didn’t come to pass but in a wide-ranging interview with The New York Times, Affleck reveals why.
According to Affleck, a troubled marriage and his resulting drinking problem led him to walk away from the role. Fans who were following the DCEU back then would remember that Affleck was working on a script for his version of The Batman when he gave up the script, the directing gig and eventually the role itself. Turns out Affleck did have a script that was good according to his friend who also warned him that if he took on the role, he’d probably drink himself to death.
I drank relatively normally for a long time. What happened was that I started drinking more and more when my marriage was falling apart. This was 2015, 2016. My drinking, of course, created more marital problems.
Affleck also admitted that the troubled production of Justice League with its change of directors and extensive reshoots took a lot of his interest away from the role. Nevertheless, he was interested in taking a shot at a solo Batman film before the realization of his drinking problem waned his interest to the point of quitting.
As for The Batman, after Affleck’s departure, Matt Reeves came on board and cast Robert Pattinson in the role. So far, it’s all been progressing really well, with filming having recently begun and Glasgow, Scotland being eyed at next for filming a few key scenes. Let’s hope Reeves and Pattinson live up to the high standards set by the Dark Knight’s iconic depictions and do it full justice.
The Batman hits theaters on June 25, 2021. Do you still think there’s a chance Affleck could return to the role in some sort of cameo once he straightens his act and gets out of alcoholism? Sound off with your thoughts in the comments below.