Matt Reeves is gearing up to begin work on The Batman, and it looks like he plans on starting from scratch. Reeves has been preoccupied with his latest film, War for the Planet of the Apes, which hits theaters this weekend, so he hasn’t had time to really dig into his upcoming DC Extended Universe movie — and that’s because he didn’t officially board the project until just a few months ago.
After making his debut as Batman in Zack Snyder’s Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice last year, Ben Affleck signed on to write and direct his own standalone Batman film, which he was co-writing with DC Films head honcho Geoff Johns. Then, back in January, Affleck suddenly stepped down from his directing duties and left the director’s chair open for Reeves to step in. Despite rumors suggesting that Affleck will be recast as Batman following his appearance in Snyder’s Justice League later this year, he is scheduled to reprise his role in Reeves’ upcoming film, though it looks like the story that he wrote with Johns will no longer be used.
Reeves has continually stated that he hasn’t had any time to work on The Batman because he’s been busy finishing and promoting War for the Planet of the Apes. However, now that he has time, people have been wondering if he plans on retooling the script that Affleck and Johns wrote, or if he’s going to want to start from scratch and create his own story. It turns out, Reeves is going with the latter. In a recent chat on MTV‘s Happy Sad Confused podcast, Reeves revealed that he’s going to back to the beginning with The Batman.
“It’s a new story; it’s just starting again. I’m excited about it. I think it’s going to be really cool.”
Interestingly, working off pre-written scripts and trying to adhere to an established formula is something that has become increasingly more common, and it’s not something that every director is comfortable with doing. Edgar Wright infamously left Ant-Man after working on the film for several years because Marvel Studios started tweaking the script without his involvement. So, it’s understandable for Reeves to want to start over from scratch, considering that his work on past films — namely, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and War for the Planet of the Apes — established personal connections to the characters and stories.
Aside from the fact that Reeves is directing the movie and Affleck is starring in it, there’s not much we know about The Batman. Since the filmmaker plans on rewriting the story, that begs the question, what will become of Joe Manganiello, who was previously confirmed to be playing Deathstroke in the upcoming film? After all, Affleck even teased the supervillain last year. We should find out more about the movie as we get closer to Justice League later this year, and perhaps even during Warner Bros.’ panel at San Diego Comic-Con later this month.
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