Why Ben Affleck Actually Bailed On Directing Batman

Batman Justice League

Ben Affleck joined the DC film universe in a big way when he not only took on the role of Batman but signed on to star in and direct the planned solo effort for the character. However, since then, Affleck has handed off the director's chair. At the time, Affleck stated that he simply couldn't do both jobs of star and director to the level they required. However, now the Justice League star has revealed that the real issue was that he didn't want to direct off a bad script, and he didn't like the ones he was getting. According to Affleck...

For me, it's interesting, and I always evaluate this stuff on the merit of the material. I want to direct a Batman movie, and I never got a script that I was happy with, so they are starting over and writing another script. And right now, I think a lot of different possibilities I think for the way the DC Universe could go, and I will just follow my interests in pursuing that. And I know that I love working with this group of people, and it was a real joy for me to make this movie.

This response does make a bit more sense than Ben Affleck's original statement when he was stepping down. Affleck had written, directed, and starred in movies before. His effort and directing and starring in Argo resulted in an Oscar for Best Picture. There's no question that Affleck is perfectly capable of handling multiple jobs on a film set and doing them all well. The actor tells Daily Sabah that the real issue was that he didn't want to direct a movie based on material he wasn't happy with, and that's where the solo Batman movie was going.

Of course, as Ben Affleck points out, the script is being rewritten once again, so one wonders if Affleck may have stepped aside a bit too soon. He says he still wants to direct a Batman movie, so if this next rewrite gets the story to a place where it works, perhaps the star will wish he was also the director. However, now War for the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves is the one in that position.

Of course, for any of this to matter there has to actually be a solo Batman movie, and at this point, it's anybody's guess when that will happen. Only 2018's Aquaman and 2019's Wonder Woman 2 feel like sure bets at even happening. Beyond that, it's far from clear when any of the other numerous DC projects that have been announced will actually appear. Whether it's Ben Affleck or Matt Reeves, there's a solid director involved in the Batman film, so hopefully, the next Batman movie will be what everybody hopes it can be, whenever we see it.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.