‘The Batman’ Director Matt Reeves Talks About Turning Down Ben Affleck’s Script

Matt Reeves opens up on reimagining The Batman!

Robert Pattinson Ben Affleck Batman

Matt Reeves, director of The Batman, has reflected on the original script by Ben Affleck and why he declined to direct that version of the film.

When The Batman was first envisioned by DC, before Matt Reeves joined the project, the film was going to follow Ben Affleck’s version of the Caped Crusader, as introduced in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Affleck was also attached to co-write and direct the film. When the actor chose to walk away from the project, it was ultimately handed over to Matt Reeves, who drastically reimagined the project.

Abandoning Ben Affleck’s older version of Batman and the more fantastical comic-book world of the DCEU, Matt Reeves instead delivered a film that found Batman in the early days of his crime-fighting career, in a far more grounded version of Gotham City.

What Became Of Affleck’s Batman?

It should be obvious to any DC fan that Matt Reeves’ approach to Batman was vastly different to that taken by Ben Affleck and Zack Snyder in the DCEU films. It’s unsurprising then that Reeves chose to pass on Affleck’s version of The Batman because he felt “it wasn’t for [him] to do.”

During an appearance on The Q&A With Jeff Goldsmith to promote The Batman‘s Blu-Ray release, Matt Reeves revealed he read the original version of The Batman‘s script but felt the action-oriented film wasn’t for him. The director explained:

“The movie was originally going to be directed by Ben Affleck, and the script they sent me had been written by Ben but rewritten by another very talented writer, and when I read it, I was like, ‘Oh, I get it.’ It was a standalone Batman film that was centered on Ben’s version of the character, but it was more action-driven than what I felt I could do. I didn’t connect to the movie in terms of me as a filmmaker. It was very James Bond-ian; it was filled with a lot of set pieces. It could have been a very exciting movie for someone else to do, but it wasn’t for me to do.”

While fans will be curious to know more about Ben Affleck’s version of the film, which would have pitted the Dark Knight against Deathstroke, Matt Reeves’ take proved immensely popular. Most fans will probably be happy he decided to take The Batman in his own direction.

Here is the synopsis for The Batman:

“Two years of stalking the streets as the Batman (Robert Pattinson), striking fear into the hearts of criminals, has led Bruce Wayne deep into the shadows of Gotham City. With only a few trusted allies — Alfred Pennyworth (Andy Serkis), Lt. James Gordon (Jeffrey Wright) — amongst the city’s corrupt network of officials and high-profile figures, the lone vigilante has established himself as the sole embodiment of vengeance amongst his fellow citizens.

When a killer targets Gotham’s elite with a series of sadistic machinations, a trail of cryptic clues sends the World’s Greatest Detective on an investigation into the underworld, where he encounters such characters as Selina Kyle/aka Catwoman (Zoë Kravitz), Oswald Cobblepot/aka the Penguin (Colin Farrell), Carmine Falcone (John Turturro), and Edward Nashton/aka the Riddler (Paul Dano). As the evidence begins to lead closer to home and the scale of the perpetrator’s plans becomes clear, Batman must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit, and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued Gotham City.”

Directed by Matt Reeves, The Batman stars Robert Pattinson as the titular hero, Zoe Kravitz as Catwoman, Paul Dano as the Riddler, Jeffrey Wright as James Gordon, John Turturro as Carmine Falcone, Peter Sarsgaard as Gil Colson, Jayme Lawson as Bella Reál, with Andy Serkis as Alfred Pennyworth, Colin Farrell as the Penguin and Barry Keoghan as The Joker.

The film is now streaming exclusively on HBO Max. Stay tuned for the latest news regarding The Batman and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more content!

Source: The Q&A With Jeff Goldsmith (via ComicBookMovie.com)