I have made it no secret on this blog that my favorite comic book character (heck one of my favorite characters of all time) is Batman. So naturally when you get news like the news we got today that a solo Batman film is on the way I get very excited. That’s not the most thrilling aspect about this story (that Deadline is breaking). The most thrilling aspect is not only will Ben Affleck reprise his role as the Dark Knight but he will also step behind the camera to direct and also co-write the script with heavyweight comic book writer Geoff Johns.
Affleck directing the new Batman standalone is something a lot of us had suspected for a while. He is one of the hottest directors in Hollywood right now. When your credits include, “Gone Baby Gone” , “The Town” (my personal favorite), and “Argo” (a film that happen to win Best Picture at the Oscars) you ought to be sought after. A Batman movie doesn’t have to be effects heavy either which would be a perfect fit with his gritty and practical approach to directing. One of his strongest strengths as a director is his attention to making the environment feel alive. In the lore of Batman, the city of Gotham is very much a character and “Gone Baby Gone” and “The Town” are films that really capture the feeling of the city of Boston as if it’s a character (in the way that “Rocky” did for Philadelphia). Ben could bring that to the fictional city of Gotham.
Bringing him on to write is also no surprise (considering he is an Academy Award winning writer for “Good Will Hunting”). The surprising bit was the news that DC’s Chief Creative Officer, Geoff Johns would come on to co-write the script. I don’t normally like the idea of bringing over comic book writers to write a film simply because they are two different animals and just because you’re good at one doesn’t mean you’ll be good at the other. That being said bringing in Geoff Johns does excite me. If there is one guy who knows the DC characters in and out and in between again, its him. From “Blackest Night” to “Batman: Earth One”, his New 52 re-launches of “The Justice League”, and “Aquaman” Johns has proven himself to be among the top comic book writers. He has some TV credits in CW’s “Arrow” and “The Flash”. Besides even with his inexperience as a screenwriter for a major Hollywood film…he is writing it with Academy Award Winner Ben Affleck (I’m sure he can help him out).
Had he been writing the film alone I mind have some hesitation but paired with a talented writer like Affleck gives me great optimism . I’d love to see this become a trend. Pairing up talented comic book writer(s) with great screenwriters; it could prove to be an interesting experiment. I’d love to see DC roll the dice and bring in current New 52 Batman writer Scott Snyder to help with future Batman films (currently my favorite running writer on the series).
Knowing the die-hard Batman fan that Affleck is and the knowledge of Geoff Johns this is sure to be a great Batman film. If you’re still hung up on Affleck even playing Batman, well I think “Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice” will change your mind. I have the upmost confidence that not only will he be a good Batman but one of the best (and if I’m wrong… I’m wrong, but I don’t think I’ll be wrong).