Of the many questions left open by the end of director Zack Snyder’s long-awaited Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is the exact nature and circumstances of the death of Bruce Wayne’s boy ward and trusted sidekick Robin – something only briefly alluded to in Snyder’s movie. It’s all the more intriguing a question since rumors past have claimed that the in-development DC Extended Universe Batman solo movie, which Batman V Superman‘s Ben Affleck has reportedly written and may also be lined up to direct, will feature the second Robin, Jason Todd, as Red Hood – drawing inspiration from the ‘Under the Red Hood’ storyline previously brought to life in comic book and animated movie form.
Whether or not Todd or his predecessor Dick Grayson, subsequently known as Nightwing, will ultimately make an appearance in the DCEU in the future remains open to speculation. However, the latest word from Snyder, and Batman V Superman co-stars Affleck and Henry Cavill, certainly points towards some kind of future wherein the Robin lineage in the DCEU will be properly explored.
In the video featured above as initially published by IGN, Snyder states that in his mind Bruce Wayne is still mourning the tragic murder of an unspecified Robin some ten years before the events of Batman V Superman – the result of a deadly run-in with a younger Joker (Jared Leto, who will debut as the DCEU version of the character in the upcoming Suicide Squad). Affleck and Cavill go on to reiterate the importance of said tragedy within the larger thematic landscape of Batman V Superman, and how that death of Robin in particular informs Wayne’s line in the film (one that was also featured heavily in the Batman V Superman trailers): “Maybe it’s the Gotham City in me, we just have a bad history with freaks dressed like clowns.”
Based on the testimony provided on the behalf of Batman V Superman‘s leading creative talents, it remains uncertain whether or not the Robin in question was definitively Grayson or Todd – though the opportunity for future appearances from Nightwing or the Red Hood remain open and infinitely attractive. Pending further consideration on the behalf of Warner Bros. Pictures and DC, perhaps either character might yet make their way into the future Batman standalone feature, be it by Affleck’s directorial hand or otherwise.
If things start to come together for Affleck, we could see a film in keeping with the Oscar winning actor-director’s track record thus far as a premiere filmmaker within the crime/thriller sub-genre, which is a decided aesthetic flourish for storytelling that would lend itself well to the detective elements of the classic Red Hood story (or any Batman detective story, for that matter). For now, fans of the DCEU will just have to wait and see what kind of shape the motion picture franchise continues to take with the release of future films over the course of the next four years.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is now playing in U.S. theaters. Suicide Squad will see theatrical release on August 5th, 2016, followed by Wonder Woman on June 23rd, 2017; Justice League Part One on November 17th, 2017;The Flash on March 16th, 2018; Aquaman on July 27th, 2018;Shazam on April 5th, 2019; Justice League Part Two on June 14th, 2019; Cyborg on April 3rd, 2020; and Green Lantern Corps. on June 19th, 2020.