Ben Affleck Says Justice League Had One Problem After Another

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Ben Affleck is making the rounds to promote his latest film The Way Back and much like the movie itself, he’s doing a lot of self-analysis and reflection about the struggles in his life and career.

One of the bigger topics of discussion is his exit as Batman in the DCEU. Despite some significant backlash upon his casting (though there’s been more for Robert Pattinson), fans eventually warmed up to his iteration of the character. Personally, I’d argue his fight scene late in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is the single best depiction of the Caped Crusader ever put to film, with apologies to Michael Keaton and Christian Bale, of course.

But his stint as the Dark Knight was short-lived. We only got one more performance (not counting Suicide Squad) out of him and it was in the troubled production that was Justice League. During an interview with GQ, Affleck spoke about his reasons for stepping away from the role and why the film’s numerous problems created a snowball effect of bad luck, saying:

“Justice League was unfortunately touched by some personal tragedy — a death in (director) Zack’s [Snyder] family. And like I say, sometimes things sort of work and gel and sometimes you seem to be having one problem after another.”

But after working on Justice League, which began production even before Batman V Superman came out, he began to lose enthusiasm for the part despite agreeing to write, direct and star in a solo movie, with Affleck explaining:

“I had my fill of that. They said, ‘Would you like to direct and star in a solo Batman movie?’ And I found that, at some point, I had lost my enthusiasm or passion for it. And I thought this should really be made by someone for whom it’s their wildest dream come true. It was clear to me it was time to move on.”

Elsewhere, in a recent profile in The New York Times, the actor talked about his struggles with alcoholism and how it came to a head while he was Batman. The script for his solo movie had a draft, but making it would come with a cost, according to someone close to him, and so he decided he had to walk away.

“I showed someone ‘The Batman’ script,” he recalled. “They said, ‘I think the script is good. I also think you’ll drink yourself to death if you go through what you just went through again.’”

That’s some brutal honesty right there. Personally, Affleck’s decision to play a superhero right after winning another Oscar was always baffling to me. Hindsight being 20/20, it was the wrong move both professionally and personally, but he appears to be okay with that and his new movie and the press tour for it seem to be some kind of therapy. He technically already has a comeback under his belt, too, so why not make another one?