Even though Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice wasn't the critical darling Warner Bros hoped it would be in 2016, Ben Affleck's Batman made a good impression for many moviegoers. Soon after he cameoed in Suicide Squad, and he'll return later this year for Justice League. Following the superhero team-up, the Caped Crusader is expected to star in his first DCEU solo movie, and Affleck himself said last month that the plan was to get the cameras rolling by Spring 2017. However, now there's word that production will be delayed.
Batman-On-Film has heard from a source that the Batman movie has been "pushed back" by at least "a couple months," which would be in mid-summer territory. A few months may not seem that big a deal at first, but if the plan was to get the movie out by sometime in 2018, that will be significantly harder to pull off, thus possibly necessitating the movie be held back until 2019. It's worth mentioning that at the end of an interview with Fox 5 DC posted a little bit after this initial report, Ben Affleck mentioned that they're "getting going" on the Batman movie. Still, the comment is too vague to determine whether he's saying things are progressing as scheduled or if he just threw those words so he wouldn't have to get too into specifics.
Right now, Warner Bros and DC have two movies scheduled for 2018: The Flash, on March 23, and Aquaman, on October 5. The Flash lost its director in late October, and there's been no word on whether the project has found a replacement director or if its principal photography will be delayed. As for Aquaman, it was originally supposed to come out on July 27, and it's unclear whether Warner Bros is still holding onto that July date for a different movie or if they've let it go. It's likelier the former since the studio wouldn't want to burn its bridges, but this reported shooting delay would make it extremely difficult for the Batman movie be completed in time for that summer spot.
If this production delay is legitimate, it's important to note that it doesn't need to be looked at as a bad thing. Ben Affleck recently said that while he would still like to direct the Batman movie, he also doesn't want to commit to that job if the script (which he's cowriting with DC president Geoff Johns) doesn't come together in a way he thinks is great. If a delay means we can get a better Batman story out of Affleck, then by all means, take a few extra months to work out these kinks/issues with the story. After eight theatrical solo movies (10 if you count Mask of the Phantasm and the upcoming The LEGO Batman Movie), it's especially important that the DCEU's Batman stars in a tale that stands out from the pack.
We'll keep you updated on how Ben Affleck's Batman movie is progressing as more details come in. For now, look forward to seeing the Dark Knight in action again when Justice League is released on November 17, 2017.