There were a handful of candidates floated to portray Batman in Zack Snyder's developing Man of Steel sequel before left-field candidate Ben Affleck accepted the job, ranging from Matthew Goode - who portrayed Ozymandias in Snyder's Watchmen comic book adaptation - to lesser-known character actor Max Martini (Pacific Rim) and well-established star Josh Brolin (Labor Day), in addition one of Screen Rant's own choices, Richard Armitage (The Hobbit trilogy).
Brolin, who stars in director Spike Lee's Americanized take on the modern Asian cult classic Oldboy later this year, has since confirmed that he was, at one point, a legitimate contender to don the cape and cowl in Snyder's movie. The actor, much like Affleck, is the appropriate age to play an "older" (read: 30-40 something) Caped Crusader who will clash with Henry Cavill's less-experienced Kal-El in the Man of Steel followup; not to mention, Brolin is no stranger when it comes to portraying characters with a benign surface that shatters when their primal nature bursts out during acts of violence (see: American Gangster, Gangster Squad, etc.)
However, despite him being qualified for the Batman job, Brolin told The Huffington Post that was only considered for Man of Steel 2 (a.k.a. Batman vs. Superman) and that he never received a formal offer from - nor did Brolin engage in a proper conversation with - Snyder about the possible casting:
"We did. I didn't have conversations about it, but Zack, that was part of his idea. It just didn't turn out. It's OK. It is OK. You know, another scenario might have worked better, but I'm happy for Ben."
Interestingly, there's a decent argument to be made that Brolin seems like a more natural fit to play Batman, whereas Affleck is a better match for the character's Bruce Wayne persona (something that Screen Rant's Andrew Dyce touched upon in his article examining the Batfleck casting). Brolin has convincingly portrayed physically-explosive characters before, yet his portrayal of the methodical Llewelyn Moss in No Country for Old Men shows that he can handle both sides of the Caped Crusader's personality. Thing is, though, Brolin doesn't wear the conventional playboy look as well as Affleck - who, as he showed in The Town and (to a lesser degree) Argo, can also be serious, broody and threatening when the occasion calls for it.
As it stands, though, Brolin isn't worried about the lost opportunity and has joined people like Matt Damon and potential Man of Steel 2 composer Hans Zimmer in throwing his weight behind Affleck as Batman (not least of all because of the online rally against the latter's casting). To quote Brolin on the situation:
"I've never seen such a global reaction in my life. I feel for him, truly. I would not want to be him right now. The reaction becomes so personal. It's like, 'F**k this guy, I wish he was dead.' And you're like, 'What? Dude, seriously? This guy is just working like you are. He's doing the same thing you are. He's trying to make the best choices he can.'
"I think I might have said that like 15 years ago, but now, because of the Internet, man, I just feel for anybody who gets lambasted at that level. I want him to kick ass and I want everyone to love it and kind of eat their words."
Are you onboard (or, at the least, wiling to keep an open mind) with Batfleck at this stage? Or would you've preferred that someone like Brolin landed the role of the Caped Crusader in the Man of Steel sequel?
Batman vs. Superman/Superman vs. Batman/Man of Steel 2 is slated to begin filming in Michigan by early 2014. The film will open in theaters on July 17th, 2015.
Source: The Huffington Post