After years in development hell, it’s looking like Warner Bros. have firmed up their plans for The Flash. The long-awaited solo outing for the Scarlet Speedster is set to adapt the Flashpoint storyline, in which we explore a twisted version of the DC Universe. This looks set to see Jeffrey Dean Morgan reprise his role as Thomas Wayne (as briefly seen in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice) who becomes a warped and murderous take on the Dark Knight.
But it’s looking like Flashpoint Batman won’t be the only version of the character appearing in The Flash. Fans were stunned this week at the unexpected announcement that Michael Keaton is in talks to return as the Burtonverse Batman, as seen in 1989’s Batman and 1992’s Batman Returns. Word is that the plan is to position this older Bruce Wayne as the Nick Fury of the DCEU, providing connective tissue across multiple DC movies.
Given Keaton’s age, it seems his Batman will likely have retired from active crimefighting in accordance with older versions of the character seen in various media. And now, sources close to WGTC – the same ones who told us Now You See Me 3 and National Treasure 3 are in development, both of which were correct – have informed us that they’re considering using the Keaton Bruce Wayne to finally get the Batman Beyond solo movie off the ground.
This has been discussed in Hollywood since the early 2000s, of course, and seems like a no-brainer as it combines the best bits of Batman and Spider-Man into one cool futuristic tale. And the way they’d set it up is by apparently introducing Terry McGinnis very briefly towards the end of The Flash.
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Details on how exactly Terry would factor in remain unclear, but Keaton has long been the fans’ choice to play the grumpy, physically limited yet still dangerous Batman Beyond Bruce Wayne. So if the response to him in The Flash is positive, then I’d expect this project to be rushed through development.
In any case, given that Warner Bros. seem to be embracing the possibilities of a movie multiverse rather than a singular MCU-style continuity, I hope we get an official Batman Beyond announcement sooner rather than later.