WB Might Be Introducing A Black Batman Via Joker-Style Movie

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In the 80 years since Batman first leapt onto the pages of Detective Comics we’ve seen a practically endless parade of different versions of him. There’s been vampire Batman, teen future Batman, evil Batman, really evil Batman, Victorian Batman, Joker Batman and caveman Batman (among many, many other flavors). Now, however, we’re hearing that Warner Bros. are considering creating one more: a black Batman.

Details on this are thin on the ground, but sources close to WGTC – the same ones who told us a Justice League Dark show is coming to HBO Max, Now You See Me 3 is in development and The Batman‘s release date would be delayed, all of which were correct – the plan is to introduce the character in an Elseworlds-style movie like Joker. This means that it’d take place in its own continuity and wouldn’t intersect with Matt Reeves and Robert Pattinson’s upcoming film or with the rest of the DCEU. Additionally, we’re told that the black Batman would go on to show up in other projects as well, all set outside the continuity of the DCEU.

Of course, this wouldn’t be the first black Batman by a long shot. 2011’s Batman Inc. comic saw the introduction of Batwing, the alter ego of a police officer who fights for justice in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This version of the character eventually gave up the mantle to Lucius Fox’s son Luke. However, if they’re looking for inspiration from the comics, there’s one pretty obscure story they should definitely tap.

In 2001, DC launched ‘Just Imagine…’, a collaboration with Stan Lee, in which the comic book legend reimagined iconic DC characters. His take on Batman was the African-American Wayne Williams, who became Batman after he was framed and sent to prison. While unjustly incarcerated, he trained his mind and body, desperate to clear his name and fight those who framed him. Upon his release, he becomes Batman, seeking to prevent future perversions of justice against Gotham’s African-American community.

Reading the tea leaves, it feels like this black Batman movie is less a project Warner Bros. decided to do and more like a successful pitch someone has made for them in the wake of Joker‘s wild success. Whatever the case, though, the studio have to be keenly aware that with Cyborg’s future looking very hazy, they’re currently lacking any major black superheroes on the big screen.