It’s been at least a few weeks since we’ve heard a story about Ben Affleck apparently not wanting to play Batman anymore, which must be a record at this point. Back in July at San Diego Comic-Con, Affleck seemed to reaffirm his allegiance to the cowl, stating “Batman is the coolest f—ing part in any universe. I’m so thrilled to do it. I’m not going anywhere.” But according to his own family, Ben might not continue on after Justice League after all.
Speaking on WEEI Sports Radio Network this week, Ben’s brother and fellow actor Casey Affleck was asked if his brother would returning to star in Matt Reeves’ solo Batman movie and Affleck sounded doubtful:
“I thought he was an okay Batman,” Casey begins. “No, he was great. He was great. He’s a hero, so he had something to channel and work with there. But he’s not going to do that movie [The Batman], I don’t think. Sorry to say.”
Skip to about the 06:00 mark for Batman talk:
Whoa, okay. That sounds pretty definitive … but then the host says that Casey is “breaking news” and suddenly the actor starts walking back his comments. “Is that breaking news? I was just kind of making that up,”
There’s quite a bit to unpack here. On the one hand, it’s not like Casey Affleck hasn’t pulled elaborate pranks on the public before, having directed a full movie that was billed as a documentary but was later revealed to be an elaborate hoax. On the other hand, the first part of his response seems quite genuine, as if Ben had confided in him previously about wanting to quit Batman. He also seems quite surprised to discover that his comments are “breaking news,” and his claim that he made it all up could be interpreted as being serious or just a response to cover up his mistake.
It also doesn’t help that Ben Affleck hasn’t definitively stated that he’ll be starring in Reeves’ movie in the several public appearances and interviews he’s had since that initial story about his departure first surfaced. But really, who knows what’s happening with The Batman at this point? That movie has felt cursed from moment one and the thing is still years away from release. It would just be nice to hear Ben give a definitive response to all of this because if his performance in Justice League is awesome, it’s going to be hard to say goodbye to him before we ever even got to see him star in a solo Batman movie.