So Warner Brothers made it official today that Ben Affleck has signed on to play Batman/Bruce Wayne in the up coming Batman/Superman crossover film. The interwebs blew up immediately with mostly mainstream fans being thrilled at the announcement and fanboys and girls generally not so thrilled. We don’t have any stats to back up this statement but it’s easy to verify via a quick look at Facebook. Fanboys are really looking at this announcement in a shortsighted way though.
Mainstream fans, the ones that must be convinced to go to these films to make them possible (because like it or not they are the majority) aren’t going to be as thrilled about Batman and Superman appearing in the same movie. These audience members may think it doesn’t make a lot of sense other than a money grab. They don’t know the glory of those crossover comics when they were great and they are probably only vaguely familiar with the Justice League. Bringing a popular face like Affleck on board may help cement their interest in the film.
That’s not all. Affleck has shown himself to be a much more mature artist than he once might have been. If you watched his Project Greenlight series on HBO you know he’s passionate about what he does. Yes Daredevil was weak but not due to him. That film was a studio disaster. Everyone knows about the behind the scenes tinkering that was supposed to make Jennifer Garner more popular for a spin off movie. Hey it worked on Ben because he eventually married her! The biggest issue I see with Affleck is that he has never played such a dark and brooding type of character.
Up to this point Warner Brothers hasn’t taken the DC franchises seriously. Does anyone remember Green Lantern? So having an A list actor throw his weight behind the film along with a solid creative team is a very good thing. Also everyone seems to forget that he comes from the Kevin Smith school of geekdom so he loves comics and wanted to do this kind of work before Marvel made it profitable.
How is this not a great idea? Affleck has the acting chops, he has the look, he has a true love of geekdom, and he has the clout to help make sure the movie is great, oh and mainstream movie goers seem to like him too. Everyone should just be happy at this point that it’s not Tom Cruise.
Sell me a ticket right now.