Warner Bros. boss Kevin Tsujihara confirmed last year that Ben Affleck would be directing DC Comics’ next standalone Batman film, but the actor’s apparently not so sure. In an interview published in the Guardian this weekend, Affleck said that it was “the idea” that he would be directing, but that it wasn’t as concrete a deal as previously reported. “It’s not a set thing and there’s no script,” Affleck said. “If it doesn’t come together in a way I think is really great I’m not going to do it.”
That equivocation may come as a shock for fans after Tsujihara’s apparent confirmation of Affleck’s role in production, the shifting of the Justice League movie in order to make room for a new Batman, as well as the actor’s previous comments. Affleck addressed the standalone superhero movie throughout 2016, saying that he would probably call it The Batman, and tweeting footage showing Deathstroke — played by Joe Manganiello — who is expected to be one of the film’s main villains.
But the actor and director has also stressed that he would not rush filming and risk producing a disappointing movie. Affleck hinted at ongoing story issues during a Facebook Live interview with the New York Times last year, saying that the script was still being hammered out, and refusing to offer specific dates that filming would take place. Affleck’s latest comments make it sound like the project hasn’t come much further since then, and it may be a while before we see the sad, mad Batman back on the big screen.