Kevin Smith Has A Theory As To Why Ben Affleck Isn’t Directing ‘The Batman’

Posted Monday, February 6th, 2017 05:20 pm GMT -4 by


With comments leading up to Ben Affleck (‘Argo’,’The Town’) stepping out of the director’s chair for ‘The Batman,’ it wasn’t too surprising to¬†Kevin Smith (‘Mall Rats’,’Chasing Amy’) who is weighing in on why he suspects this could have happened. Now, Kevin is quick to point out that he and Affleck haven’t hung out in awhile so this is just a theory but it is a pretty straight forward one that could make sense as we don’t know what really is going on behind the scenes.

For all we know, Affleck’s departure could have been anything from script delays to ‘Live by Night’ not performing well at the box office to disagreements with Warner Brothers on the direction and tone of the film to not being happy with what is happening with ‘Justice League’. However, on last week’s Fatman on Batman vlog, Smith has a pretty straight forward answer which would make perfect sense:

“Let’s talk about why? Why would this happen? I don’t know. I haven’t spoken to him in years, but here’s my take on it. Here’s my hot take. What’s the upshot? Seriously. Everybody wants that to be the greatest Batman movie ever made, and you know, in many cases, maybe the greatest Batman movie ever made has been made, called The Dark Knight, it’s a pretty wonderful film. If that’s your bar for a Batman standalone, Chris Nolan couldn’t even measure up to himself with The Dark Knight Rises. I liked it but it wasn’t received nearly as well. Let’s be honest like that Joker portrayal is for the ages. F***** beyond brilliant and s***.”

“So, it’s a tall order man. So maybe he’s the kind of guy who’s just like why bother. Why am I going to step up to the plate, no matter what I do people are going to b****. If it ain’t f****** The Dark Knight, I’m f*****, but if I’m just acting in it, my name’s Paul and this is between ya’ll, I’m just the Bat, that’s it. The guy or girl tells me what to do and go and so you got a beef with the movie? Talk to these motherf******. That’s easier. That’s an easier life. You don’t have to sit there and take the slings and arrows.”

Honestly, that really does make sense. Nolan’s trilogy wasn’t just a box office success but is what everyone will be comparing his performance to as is. If people are going to hold being Batman against him on his acting, why have it happen on directing on top of it? Personally, I thought he was one of the few saving graces of ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ but we’ve all seen what DC has been doing with their films so it would make sense for anyone to be hesitant on whatever they have planned going forward.

Are you glad to hear that Affleck won’t be directing ‘The Batman’ or do you wish it would still end up happening? Do you think Kevin Smith’s theory is correct? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


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Stuart Conover is an author, blogger, and all around geek. When not busy being a father and husband he tries to spend as much time as possible immersed in comic books, science fiction, and horror! Would you like to know more? Follow him on Twitter!

  • ed

    An older, de-retired Affleck Bat-man v a “damaged” Juggalo Leto Joker can’t look anything but RIDICULOUS in comparison to Bale’s Batman going against Ledger’s Joker in THE DARK KNIGHT.

    At least Affleck can escape the blame from Directing such a prospect by having another person Direct THE BATMAN… but WARNER BROS has him STILL Writing and Acting the role. He’s (contractually?) obligated to be the Batman character in the existing DC Films Universe.

    Maybe Kevin Smith excuse for Affleck leaving directorship is right— NOW he’ll be only responsible for 2/3rd’s of THE BATMAN!

    /the DCFU

    • Maybe they should avoid the Joker for this one, then. Go for Penguin or Riddler. Seeing a super serious and bitter Batman go up against the daft silliness of Riddler could be a good contrast.

      Or maybe base it loosely on the Arkham games? Have a bunch of baddies that he locked up get out and wreak havoc.

      • Gillman

        Well Deathstroke is the big bad this time around but rumor has it that it’s loosely based on Arkham/Knightfall. Deathstroke releasing Arkham inmates to weaken Batman’s resolve before taking him down.

        • I can get behind that.

          • Gillman

            Same. Deathstroke is a fantastic character who deserves his own solo film (in my opinion). You can make a John Wick inspired action movie with that character. Play around with his ethics, one moment the audience is behind him, the next he’s despicable.

            I know this might be an unpopular opinion but I thought Affleck’s Batman was awesome. If you take that live action iteration and just dump him into loosely inspired Arkham storylines, I’m there. Especially if they go with the Arkham Asylum plot where someone like Joker, Riddler or Scarecrow takes over with Batman trapped on the island. Take all my money.

          • Yeah, Batman was one of the stronger elements of BvS. The problem with Superman was the same as Anakin in the SW prequels: A decent-enough actor with a terribly written character that had loads of potential.

            Superman should have been optimistic and hopeful or humanity in the film. Let Batman be the bitter one.

          • Gillman

            Yeah, I enjoyed the Ultimate Edition of BvS but not in a blind fanboy way. I still acknowledge the issues with Superman and Lex Luthor, etc.

            I wouldn’t mind seeing a World’s Finest movie where they have the buddy cop dynamic. Cavill’s Superman being hopeful, good hearted, just a relaxed dude. Affleck’s Batman being the bitter, cynical, “I’m getting too old for this sh-t” type. But that’s neither here nor there.

      • ed

        Avoiding Joker in THE BATMAN is a good film choice— it’s really time to do OTHER bat-guys battling the Caped Crusader in the movies. The Riddler is a better choice than Penguin or Mr. Freeze… but I wanna see Catwoman go up against Wayne AND Batman. Seeing a third cinematic choice for the role other than Michelle Pfeiffer and Halle Barry goes a way to match the tv series’ meow-liscious Julie Newmar, Eartha Kitt, and Lee Meriweather…

        But WB/DC will probably use Leto’s Joker while they have him for THE BATMAN. Batman will AGAIN fight the Joker in a DCFU movie. (And we’ll get news of him sending Affleck used tampons or some such while making the film, too. Advertising!)