Zack Snyder holds the distinction of having directed the three longest comic book movies ever made thanks to his 242-minute HBO Max version of Justice League, the 215-minute Ultimate Cut of Watchmen and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice‘s 183-minute Ultimate Edition.
After that, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Avengers: Endgame is the lengthiest superhero blockbuster via a running time that’s just one minute over the three-hour mark, but no other efforts in the genre have breached that barrier. More movie means less screenings per day in theaters, which in turn results in lower box office takings, so you can understand why the major studios haven’t released the three biggest butt-numbers in their entirety on the big screen.
However, we’re hearing from our sources – the same ones who told us Ben Kingsley’s Trevor Slattery would return in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings long before it was confirmed – that Matt Reeves reportedly wants The Batman to remain much closer to three hours than two as he trims down his assembly cut in the editing suite.
Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises was 165 minutes and became bogged down by frequently glacial pacing, so you’d hope Reeves has a story worth expanding to such an epic scale, otherwise things can comfortably fall into self-indulgence. With six months still to go until release, though, it could be a long time before we find out if The Batman will be on the shorter or longer side of the equation.