The new Batman movie is said to hit theatres late next year or early 2016, and it seems director Zack Snyder wants to take a different approach. Given that not every Batman movie had the most worthy character choices, many are questioning Snyder’s choice for Ben Affleck as the new Dark Knight. More importantly, will Affleck be able to carry the torch Christian Bale lit up?
Before getting into the Affleck vs. Bale saga, let’s take a look at why some people are so skeptical. Firstly, previous versions of Batman utilized actors that didn’t exactly scream Bruce Wayne. Val Kilmer in Batman Forever was probably the worst decision in the existence of the franchise. Apart from the fact that Kilmer isn’t the best actor, he simply couldn’t adapt to the mythology that is Bruce Wayne. The next mistake came with George Clooney because he is far from what you might call a brooding character. Up until the trilogy made its appearance, Michael Keating reigned as the king. Yes, it’s true that Batman himself is a versatile character, but there are certain limits.
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Secondly, Affleck’s history in terms of superhero movies isn’t the best. He openly confessed in an interview with Playboy that he wasn’t happy with the direction the movie took and it simply killed him. His excitement to play the part ended in a personal tragedy. It is safe to assume that most people agree, Daredevil should never have seen a theatre. Elektra was the only reason most guys watched and for a superhero movie it was delightfully boring. However, he is determined to make up for the mistake. According to The Guardian, Affleck is another one of those wrong choices, but he is certainly not a bad actor. His capability to portray a brooding hero might just surprise Batman fans.
Bale’s version isn’t making things easier. The trilogy really tried to give Batman a realistic feel through emotional roles and storyline. Instead of just focusing on the action, they focused on the psychological aspects as well. This was probably why the trilogy was so successful. If Affleck sticks to what he said, which is to create his own persona instead of matching up against Bale, then yes, it can be a great movie. It will be a mistake to go up against the brilliant rendition Bale left behind in all three movies. Going in a direction where it supports the good name that exists is a much better option.
The biggest difference between Nolan and Bale’s interpretation is the timeframe. Nolan leaned towards Batman’s origins and how he came to be the Dark Knight whereas Snyder and Affleck are going to explore an older version of Wayne. Apparently Affleck’s character will be older and wiser as supposed to the conflicted Batman Bale expressed. With complete new costumes for both Batman and Superman, the hope is to create something completely new while staying true to the mythology.
Other questions are also being asked based on the rest of the cast. Jesse Eisenberg will be taking in the seat of Lex Luthor after Joaquin Phoenix turned it down. It will be interesting to see if Eisenberg physically buffs up for the role and whether it can serve as a stepping stone into action movies, although critics doubt the possibility. Gal Gadot is in charge of selling the sexy Wonder Woman. It’s a shame that Heath Ledger isn’t here to retake his role as the best Joker that ever hit the screens.
The other big question has to be who is going to win between Batman and Superman. The latter has always had an advantage over his arch enemy, Lex Luthor, seeing as Luthor is just an ordinary person. Ultimately a superhero is only as strong as his opponent and although Luthor is a lot smarter than Clark Kent, it’s a rather one-sided fight; unlike Batman whose opponents are both physically strong and mentally sharp. The fact that Superman has such a difficult time fighting Luthor with every super power in his arsenal has to tell you something about his intellect.
Nevertheless, everyone is at the edge of their seats to see what is going to happen. The storyline isn’t set in stone and subject to change which means anything is still possible.