Robert Pattinson's 'The Batman' will be a really dark trilogy
Having been taken on by the likes of Christian Bale and Michael Keaton, there's few superhero characters as iconic as Batman.
After disappointing reactions to the Batman vs Superman and Justice League films helmed by Zack Snyder, Warner Bros decided a change of direction was in order. While Affleck penned a script and was due to direct and star in 2021's The Batman, he then walked away from the project entirely.
Now, after a long wait to find out who would be taking on the leading role, firmer details are beginning to come to light about what we can expect from the next chapter of Gotham's resident hero. Here's what we know so far:
Who is in the cast?
The news that Affleck was hanging up his kevlar suit prompted debate about who would replace him. Would it be Hollywood heartthrob in the making Timothée Chalamet? Or perhaps a newly-freed from Game of Thrones duties Kit Harington?
Last month it was confirmed that Robert Pattinson would take on the role of the caped crusader, a great move we think, and one that gives Pattinson the chance to make a more mainstream film after recent arthouse hits like Claire Denis' High Life.
Joe Manganiello (Magic Mike) was confirmed to play assassin Deathstroke in the Affleck-fronted iteration of the film, however it's unclear whether he will now star in a separate spin-off instead.
J. K. Simmons, who played police commissioner James Gordon in Justice League, says he's still waiting on news as to whether he'll return. Simmons signed on for three films and has only appeared in one thus far but the recasting of Batman may put him out.
Elsewhere Jared Leto has said that he would like to reprise his role as the Joker in the film, and there's rumours of characters Catwoman and the Penguin cropping up too.
How many films will there be?
Moving back toward the celebrated Christopher Nolan Batman franchise, it has been confirmed that The Batman will be a trilogy series, with Pattinson reportedly signing a three picture deal. Director Matt Reeves, who coyly confirmed the news of his casting with three Bat emojis and a gif of the actor, is thought to have only signed on for the first film.
What is it about?
The new series will be a fresh start for the franchise with no connection to Snyder's films. Affleck's now-scrapped script was rumoured to be a dark noir-style story that has elements of a detective film. However, the new direction is focusing on a younger Batman and the first of the trilogy likely an origin story in the same vein as Batman Begins.
That said, Reeves told The Hollywood Reporter that the tone might not be too dissimilar.
"It's very much a point of view-driven, noir Batman tale," he said. "It's told very squarely on his shoulders, and I hope it's going to be a story that will be thrilling but also emotional. It’s more Batman in his detective mode that we’ve seen in the films."
He explained, "The comics have a history of that. [Bruce Wayne] is supposed to be the world’s greatest detective, and that’s not necessarily been a part of what the movies have been."
When is it out?
In January of this year it was confirmed by Warner Bros that The Batman will be released on June 25, 2021, with filming due to start at the end of 2019 or start of 2020 as per Variety.