Production On Matt Reeves’ Batfleck Movie Won’t ‘Likely’ Begin Until 2018

Batfleck
Fans (and Warner Bros. studio execs) clamoring for Ben Affleck’s solo Batman film are going to have to wait  a little longer. The film – tentatively titled The Batman, but should really be called The Batfleck – won’t likely begin production until 2018, according to the ever-reliable Variety reporter Justin Kroll, due to Reeves’ contractual obligations on War for the Planet of the Apes.

 That puts to rest the rumors of a spring or summer start, fanned by actors like Joe Manganiello who will (still?) play Slade Wilson aka Deathstroke in the movie. This is great news; it helps Reeves, who will be able to give his full focus to the whole process of making the film, rather than entering as a journeyman director.

Kroll tweeted that 2oth Century Fox has the director on lock until “at least” the end of June. I imagine he’ll also be preoccupied soon after by the promotional tour for the July 10 release, his second Apes film following 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and the third in the rebooted series. Here’s Kroll’s tweet:

The Batman is still getting its sea-legs after Affleck vacated the director’s chair in January, after co-writing the script with Geoff Johns. It recently received a rewrite by Argo and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice scribe Chris Terrio just prior to Reeves’ hire. Manganiello was cast as Deathstroke, touted as the film’s “main villain” (sorry, Jared Leto), last fall. It was previously reported that the movie will receive a “fresh start” under the new director. Reeves briefly fell out of talks before WB hired him, which Kroll also reported. His hire after that snafu implies that WB catered to Reeves’ needs, which likely includes creative control of the project. That’s good news for anybody who wants a good Batman film, as I elucidated here.

Wonder Woman and Justice League hit theaters June 2 and November 17 this year, but the DCEU currently only has one movie scheduled for 2018, Aquaman. The breather doesn’t mean WB is slowing down, as they have a huge amount of DC films in development, including The Batman, Gotham City Sirens, The Flash, Cyborg, Green Lantern Corps, Shazam, Black AdamMan of Steel 2, Nightwing, Suicide Squad 2, Deadshot, Justice League Dark, and Justice League 2. Click the links for the latest information on each.

Source: Variety’s Justin Kroll

Sam Flynn

Sam Flynn

Sam is a writer and journalist whose passion for pop culture burns with the fire of a thousand suns and at least three LED lamps.

  • Darthmanwe

    Here’s to hoping it gets delayed as long as possible.

    • SAMURAI36

      Why??

      • Darthmanwe

        Because if its delayed long enough; either

        1) JL will hit and repair the public image a bit, easing Affleck’s easily offended movie star ego ( almost all of them have very fragile egos btw, movie stars), allowing him to go into this with enthusiasm rather than dread. If he does this movie with contract forcing him, rather than him wanting it, we will get Gigli-Affleck, not The Town-Affleck.

        2) will be enough time for script to be perfected and maybe WB execs will learn their damn lesson when WW comes out and (hopefully) a hit like we think it will be, thanks to Patty J’s vision rather than their incompetent meddling.

        3) will be enough time for Aquaman and (really hoping) Flash to come out and present different characters and ( again, hopefully) being good movies that connect with people, so the tired old superhero formula will be forfeit for this batman movie, instead opting to go for a smaller, more personal crime story. Maybe even doing Red Hood, and introducing Nightwing and all that in it.

        4) And I want Wonder Woman to outshine everything else in this universe, so if it gets delayed long enough, there’s a chance they’ll fast track WW2 ( for a WW2 era movie, hehehehe) and slide it closer to aquaman’s time slot, hence giving DC a shield-franchise and character to weather any other negative criticism with.

        • SAMURAI36

          Uhmmm, okay. It’s weird to want to wish for DC’s success, but not want them to put out their MOST successful franchise on the top of the docket.
          And I’ve never been one to worry about the criticisms. If that is your focus, you’ll never sleep at night, nor will you allow yourself to thoroughly enjoy these products. Thus far, the DCEU has been everything that I could’ve hoped for. What the “critics” say has no bearing on my enjoyment whatsoever. Nor has it had any impact on the DCEU’s success, despite the critics’ best efforts.
          The DCEU will continue to make major money, & break all sorts of records, just like it’s been doing.

          • Marquis de Sade

            Your projecting and wishcrafting has become self-parody personified.

  • beane2099

    Matt Reeves on Batman and Matthew Vaughn on Man of Steel 2 (if those rumors come to fruition) are definite steps in the right direction. Were I WB I’d be courting the likes of Justin Lin on The Flash. But I think WB would be better served pushing other elements of the DCU. I’d be pushing properties like Doom Patrol, Legion of Superheroes and The Fourth World. DC has a really diverse catalog and I think there’s a real hunger for concepts that are unique.

    Everyone lauds Marvel’s approach and I think it’s a good one. I’ve enjoyed it. But I don’t think it’s the only approach. And I don;t mean the comedy/family-centric business. I’m talking in terms of “the big story.” I think the DC movies should each just stand on their own without an eye to a bigger story. Build out the universe and let that guide the “big story.” You can easily hint at things like the Monitors or other things that could lend themselves to a bigger story without having post credit scenes and the like. That’s just my take.

    • Darthmanwe

      “Doom Patrol, Legion of Superheroes and The Fourth World”

      Too outlandish for a budding movie universe. ( Doom Patrol) More suitable for TV. ( Long format storytelling rather than a single movie)

      Very steeped in lore itself, can’t happen this early on. ( Legion of SH) Also more suitable for TV.

      The Fourth World…. Just no. No. Make it a seperate movie away from any universe, and maybe that’s fine, but connected? No.

      • beane2099

        They don’t have to be connected. That was kind of my point. And some of these could absolutely be tv shows – just not on the CW please. But I’d argue Grant Morrison did a fantastic job linking the Fourth World to the DCU with stories like DC 1,000,000 and World War III. I think the movie going world is ready for “too outlandish.” The wonder of the 70′ and 80’s was that “too outlandish” was more of a dare than a limit. It’s what yielded the gold mine of properties that fuels our current era of nostalgia. But it’s time to put some fuel back in that tank. Something like Doom Patrol could be made on the cheap and wouldn’t need to make $500 million to be profitable.

        • SAMURAI36

          For the life of me, I don’t get how people can love Marvel so much, yet have such an issue with the CW version of DCTV.

          • beane2099

            I don’t play the Either-or card with Marvel and DC like a lot of you do. I’ve read books from both companies for years. I enjoy them both for different reasons. I enjoy the CW shows and the Marvel movies but I can acknowledge that they each have flaws. But you’re talking a group of feature films vs a group of tv series. Not really the same level of analysis in my book. Even if you want to make the argument that the Marvel movies are basically an going show, it’s still not the same thing. I still watch the CW shows but that doesn’t mean I want all my DC stories to come from there. I wouldn’t want the Fourth World anywhere near those writers. It’s not a good fit.

          • SAMURAI36

            It’s not about the ongoing TV show aspect, at all. My pointing out the contradiction (& yes, there is one), is that many people who condemn the CW for its writing (which you alluded to at the end of your post), are in love with the MCU (both TV & movies), that have the same sub par level of writing.
            Juvenile dialogue, endless jokes, contrived scenarios, continuity issues, low stakes, & 90’s Power Ranger style fight scenes. This is what the MCU is, & has been from the very start.
            But people adore one, & vilify the other.

      • SAMURAI36

        This is one of those rare times where I agree with you. All those properties are far too boutique to be bringing them into the DCEU. At least not right away.
        And the beauty about DC, is that unlike Marvel, 1) they have a more diverse catalog of properties, that extends beyond superheroes, & 2) they haven’t tried to force fit all of them into a single medium, like Marvel has tried (& failed) to do.
        Therefore, DC can make TV shows, cartoons, etc about these characters, without bogging down the DCEU with ideas that may not strike a cord with the general audiences.
        Besides, I feel like the DCEU is the marquis event. It’s the place where the top characters should be showcased.

  • SAMURAI36

    Sam, of all the horrible writers here on HH, you are one of the worst.
    “Batfleck”? Joe M. “still” Deathstroke? WTF are you even talking about? Are you trying to lampoon the genre intentionally, or just yourself?

    • Samuel Patrick Flynn

      The “still” refers to Manganiello hopefully still being available for a movie he thought was going to film this summer. “Batfleck” was just for you.

      • Darthmanwe

        Unless Manganiello gets into a big franchise movie other than Batman, any other movie producer will want to work around schedules so that he can star in that, because having an actor that starred in a franchise role is almost always a boost to popularity and box office.

        So the only danger of losing Joe would be something like him getting cast in Furious 9 or Jurassic World 3 or somethng.

        • SAMURAI36

          Never mind the fact that Joe has already stated he’s begun sword fighting training for the role. This article is a FAIL, on so many levels.

          • Marquis de Sade

            Yeah, and Affleck swore up n’ down that he was going to direct and star in the batman too…So that’s one down, and the inevitable one to go…Don’t be surprised if Joe M. takes Ben’s place as batman, via azrael after a major rewrite.
            BWAHAHAHA!

      • SAMURAI36

        I’d believe you, if you’d included that as a talking point in the article. But you didn’t, which means it was a inference with zero context. Again, poor writing.

        Also, never once was it stated that Deathstroke would be Batman’s main villain in the movie. You either made that up, or you did what numerous other writers (on this site as well as others) do, & treat gossip & rumors as fact without substantiation. Again, poor writing.

        We don’t know who is in the film (Lego or whomever), or even what the film is about, especially since the script was rewritten. Do you have a source, stating otherwise?

        And finally, using articles to throw jabs at your readers (IF that’s what you
        were doing; given your other faux pas’s, I’m inclined to believe otherwise) is the EPITOME of poor writing.

        But by all means, continue on playing the role of internet journalist. I hope HH pays you well.

    • Marquis de Sade

      Gosh, you’re such a supercilious lil’ byttch!