The Wrap reports that Gareth Evans is in talks to write and direct a standalone Deathstroke film for DC Comics and Warner Brothers.
Evans is best known for directing the Indonesian martial arts film The Raid and its sequel. He was originally eyed to direct Justice League Dark but ultimately passed on the project and instead impressed studio executives with his pitch for a standalone Deathstroke film. Joe Manganiello is on board to star as the supervillain.
After Manu Bennett’s performance as Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, on The CW’s Arrow, it came as no great surprise when the character resurged in DC’s relaunch of its entire line of comics titled “New 52”. Subsequently, the character was then announced as the villain for the upcoming solo Batman film last year when Ben Affleck tweeted out a visual effects test featuring the fan-favorite character.
The original Batman script from Affleck and DC creative chief officer Geoff Johns featured Deathstroke as the main villain. However, after War for the Planet of the Apes helmer Matt Reeves replaced Affleck as the film’s director, Reeves confirmed the project would be starting over with a completely new story, making it unclear whether or not Manganiello would still star as the villain of the piece.
Stay tuned to Heroic Hollywood for the latest news on the future of the DC slate as we learn it.
10 Comics That Could Inspire Ben Affleck’s Batman Movie
Ben Affleck’s The Batman has been through a ride more wild than a Batmobile hijack. Affleck, initially set to direct, dropped out to focus on playing Batman. Dawn of the Planet of The Apes director Matt Reeves stepped in, but almost pulled an Affleck during intense negotiations with Warner Bros. Finally, Reeves successfully gained creative control of the film, and fans everywhere breathed a collective sigh of relief.
Since then, news about The Batman has been fairly hard to come by. With things stabilizing creatively behind the scenes, questions still remained about the status of the film’s script. Rumors abounded that Affleck and Geoff Johns’ draft was getting a page one rewrite. Which leaves another important question looming in the minds of fans: What will the story of The Batman be about? What comics will it draw from for inspiration?
Though nothing conclusive has been revealed, we do know that Joe Manganiello’s Deathstroke is expected to be the film’s primary antagonist. Manganiello has maintained a lot of excitement for playing Deathstroke despite the film’s behind the scenes shuffles. The True Blood star has been thoroughly perusing all of Deathstroke’s iterations in the comics, suggesting that there are plenty of interpretations that the film could use – perhaps even an amalgamation of them all.
What’s even less certain is what direction Batman’s story will take in the film. Batman v Superman revealed some interesting tidbits about Bruce Wayne’s background, including that Robin had been murdered by the Joker. This leaves ripe material to explore in The Batman, particularly if the film should take place before the events of BvS.
The overall darkness and borderline psychotic interpretation of the Dark Knight also leaves open plenty of opportunity to explore the deeper nature of Batman’s psyche. With so many in-depth looks into Batman’s psychology to be found in the comics, there’s a lot of different sources The Batman’s story can employ to construct a brand new take on the Caped Crusader.
Questions also remain about the supporting cast. Characters like Alfred Pennyworth and Commissioner Gordon are pretty much guaranteed to appear. But with announcements of Nightwing and Batgirl solo films, the likelihood of Dick Grayson and Barbara Gordon making appearances in The Batman has insurmountably increased. If that’s the case, how would they factor in to the story? Which comic interpretations of Nightwing and Batgirl would the film use?
With all of these questions in mind, and so many possible Deathstroke and Batman-focused comics to draw from, we could be looking at a magnificent amalgamation of story material. Here are 10 comics that could inspire Ben Affleck’s Batman movie. Click Next to get started!