The more we hear about Ben Affleck’s abandoned version of The Batman, the more we wish it would have happened. That’s not to say that Matt Reeves and Robert Pattinson’s upcoming reboot isn’t going to be a great movie, because everything we’ve seen so far indicates that it will be, but Affleck’s take on the Dark Knight sounds like it could have been something truly special.
After all, we’ve never seen a standalone Batman pic where the title hero has been patrolling the streets of Gotham for decades, to the point that he’s reached the brink of exhaustion. Affleck’s grizzled veteran approach to the Caped Crusader possesses so much untapped potential, too, especially when you throw an antagonist like Joe Manganiello’s Deathstroke into the mix.
The actor previously revealed that The Batman was going to draw inspiration from David Fincher’s The Game, and would see Slade Wilson slowly destroy Bruce Wayne’s life from the inside out, and Zack Snyder’s Justice League even provided the setup with Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor outing the billionaire playboy as Gotham’s resident nocturnal vigilante.
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In a new interview, Manganiello dropped the surprise bombshell that Batgirl was also going to factor into The Batman during the climactic third act showdown, which would have presumably connected to the solo project that once had Joss Whedon attached at the helm.
“There was like a big, huge showdown. Batgirl jumps in to try to help Bruce because Deathstroke is so fast that he can anticipate Bruce’s movements. Batman is completely afraid because he realizes he’s met someone who can take him, and then that leads to this big climactic battle through the streets of Gotham City. But yeah, it was like a real psychological thriller where Deathstroke was kind of like a horror movie villain, like a shark, kind of like Jaws.”
Unfortunately, the calls to #RestoreTheSnyderVerse are largely being ignored by Warner Bros., despite the rampant speculation that Affleck could yet end up making a Batman movie of his own. It’s an avenue the fans would definitely love to see explored, though, especially when Manganiello keeps dropping such exciting teases about where the story would have headed.