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I am firmly and proudly a member of the community of DC movies fans who believe that Ben Affleck is a kick-ass Batman, and not just in how he looks the part, but how he portrays it, as well. Since the Oscar winner’s future as the Dark Knight in upcoming superhero movies following his reprisal in the Flash solo movie is currently unclear, I am inclined, for the time being, to look at what would be the natural next step: Marvel characters. The following are five notable names I would not mind seeing Affleck bring to life in any upcoming Marvel movies, starting with someone who rivals even Bruce Wayne in terms of dark origin stories.
Probably the biggest question regarding the highly anticipated reboot of the X-Men movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is who will succeed Hugh Jackman’s defining role as Wolverine? It is hard to think of anyone else but the Australian actor as the ageless, Adamantium-clawed mutant, but with his bittersweet curtain call in 2017’s brilliant Logan, he left the door open for someone to bring something new to the character for the X-Men’s new era on the big screen.
Fans have thrown out several different names as a worthy successor to the role, including Ben Affleck’s Justice League Snyder Cut co-star Joe Manganiello, but I would actually push my chips toward Affleck for the part, too. He has already the nailed the part of a superhero burdened by the loss of those close to him and consumed thirst for vengeance, which is Wolverine to a T. Not to mention, since Hugh Jackman endorsed Batfleck right after his Batman v Superman casting in 2013, I imagine he would likely repeat that sentiment if Marvel Studios gave Affleck his old job.
On the other hand, in case Joe Manganiello was successful in getting the rebooted Wolverine role, I have another X-Men character whom Ben Affleck might be even better suited for. I say this especially because after years of encompassing doom and gloom as Batman, he might be in the mood for something a bit lighter, which is a slightly ironic thing to say about my next Marvel character choice.
In the wake of the Disney/Fox merger and discussions of the MCU’s X-Men movies reboot, there is surprisingly little talk regarding who should play Dr. Henry “Hank” McCoy, otherwise known as Beast, after Nicolas Hoult. Maybe it’s because most fans would rather assume Kelsey Grammer would return to the role, which was perfect casting I would love to see revitalized. However, a soft-spoken genius in the body of an animalistic action hero is a challenge Ben Affleck deserves the opportunity to take on for once in his career.
Kraven The Hunter
Ben Affleck has also rarely been given the chance to play a villain. Yet, it is clear to me, from roles like the suspicious Nick Dunne in Gone Girl or hard-ass master bank robber Doug MacRay in The Town (which he directed), that he would nail it. That being said, I would like to treat casting Batfleck as a Marvel villain as another opportunity for a challenge and since Kraven the Hunter’s own solo movie was greenlit not long ago, this sounds like the shot we are looking for.
Bringing the Spider-Man villain, born Sergei Kravinoff (who is also Chameleon’s brother, believe it or not), and his story to life on the big screen for the first time would take an actor with a larger-than-life physical presence and a potent understanding of human pain. I think there are few others actors in Hollywood these day who match this description quite as well as Ben Affleck. All he needs is a good dialect coach to help him with the Russian accent and he is golden.
In retrospect, something that Ben Affleck knows very well but has also rarely been given the chance to portray onscreen is being a parent. One of the most iconic and influential parental figures in Marvel history is Peter Parker’s uncle, Ben, whom we have not met in the MCU since we were introduced to Tom Holland’s iteration of Spider-Man after his offscreen murder.
Well, I believe that the time has come for the MCU to have a quick glimpse into Ben Parker’s relationship with young Peter before his superhero days. Not to mention, if not the role of a father, the MCU can at least cast Ben Affleck as the cool uncle? Hopefully, it is not too late to pass along this idea for Spider-Man: No Way Home, right?
If it is too late, I might have an even better idea. Rumor has it that Spider-Man: No Way Home, one of the most hotly anticipated 2021 movies, is fixing to officially introduce the concept of the Marvel Multiverse into the franchise, meaning characters like Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus from Spider-Man or Jamie Foxx as The Amazing Spider-Man 2’s Electro can appear onscreen with Tom Holland’s Peter Parker. Therefore, even though there is technically a Daredevil in the MCU, there is still a chance that Affleck could reprise the role, too.
Ben Affleck has actually openly admitted that he does not care much for his 2003 adaptation of the blind attorney with five other superhuman senses either, but I would say that was far from his fault. In fact, I think if he was given a second chance at Daredevil, it could be worth the trouble. Plus, imagine how cool a multiversal team-up between Affleck and Charlie Cox’s Matt Murdock from Netflix’s cancelled Daredevil series could be.
You may say I’m a dreamer, but I am sure that I am not the only one who wants to see Ben Affleck continue to thrive in the comic movie book genre, or at least really go out with a bang before he hangs up the cape for good. If, for some reason, the DC Extended Universe would prove to be a bitter end for that part of his career, perhaps the Marvel Cinematic Universe could be his saving grace and any of these roles could be what makes that possible. If so, is there a character ripped from the pages of Marvel comics whom you would be most interested to see Affleck portray one day?
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Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in almost any article about Batman.