Michael Keaton, Ben Affleck To Reprise Batman Roles In ‘The Flash’

Robert Pattinson isn’t the only one suiting up as the caped crusader next year. 

DC Comics recently held its inaugural FanDome online, where they broke news, exclusive clips, and trailers regarding future DC projects. We got a new release date for the delayed Wonder Woman 1984. The full cast lineup was announced for James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad. Matt Reeves even released a new trailer for The Batman, in which Robert Pattinson looks simply stunning as the world’s greatest detective. 

But interestingly enough, Pattinson won’t be the only Batman actor suiting up again next year. During a virtual panel for the upcoming Flash movie starring Ezra Miller and directed by Andy Muschietti (Mama, It), two actors are confirmed to reprise their roles as Batman. The first is Ben Affleck, who retired from the role shortly after vacating from directing The Batman last year. The second is much more interesting. After 30 years of taking on the Penguin and Catwoman in the Gotham sewers, Michael Keaton will be reprising the role of Batman as a significantly older variation of the character. 

Although it was initially a rumor a month ago, the production essentially confirmed this with some new concept art showing of Barry Allen’s sleek new Flash suit, presumably designed by WayneTech industries. While it’s hard to make out, the Batman behind Flash clearly shows it’s an elder Bruce Wayne, and furthermore, his bat symbol has the yellow symbol – exactly like it is in the Tim Burton movies. This basically confirms that Keaton is involved with the production and he will be reprising his role as Batman, though whether it will specifically be the Batman from the Burton movies or another future variation entirely remains to be seen. 

The fact that both Keaton and Affleck are reprising their Batman roles for The Flash confirms another long-rumored detail that the film is, in fact, an adaptation of the “Flashpoint” storyline, a comic miniseries that showed Barry running back in time to save his mother from the Reverse-Flash and accidentally create an alternate reality where everything went wrong. 

Two interesting things to note about this premise. For one thing, in the original “Flashpoint” storyline, Batman is actually Bruce’s father Thomas Wayne, portrayed by Jeffrey Dean Morgan in Batman v Superman. The fact that both Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton are in the upcoming Flash movie implies that Bruce Wayne will be a prominent part of the storyline in both timelines, not Thomas, which already spells interesting possibilities on its own.

Second, when “Flashpoint” takes place in Flash’s storyline, he’s already a well-established character that has fought several supervillains such as Captain Cold, King Shark, and Grodd before he went back in time to save his mother. In other words, “Flashpoint” was not the introduction for the character; it was his climax. For Pete’s sake, it was the entire premise for the third season of the CW’s “Flash” TV series. Why oh why would you choose this as the starting point for Flash’s own movie series? I understand he’s already been introduced in the mediocre Justice League movie, but when it comes to his solo debut he has a chance to really shine on his own without being overshadowed by bigger characters like Superman or Batman. Why would you make his first solo outing a crossover event the likes of which has literally shifted the foundations of the DC universe? It makes absolutely no sense. 

The “Flashpoint” movie also raises another interesting question: who’s going to portray Eobard Thawne? In “Flashpoint,” Eobard Thawne, a.k.a. Reverse-Flash was an essential part of that storyline, taunting Barry and teasing him with his own failure to the point where it drove him to go back in time and make a fateful mistake by attempting to right a wrong. That begs the question of who would play him? Some fans have thrown out names such as Kevin Bacon and Dan Stevens, but personally, I think Anthony Starr would be the best fit. His performance as Homelander in “The Boys” was smug, cocky, and high-strung; perfect for the full-of-himself character of Eobard Thawne. I only worry he may not be given enough space to really shine or stand out as a villain. After all, “Flashpoint” is already packed with a very large cast. 

We’ll have to wait and see which bizarre and unexpected directions The Flash takes us in 2022. In the meantime, enjoy rewatching The Batman trailer all over again, because nobody can get enough of that. 

– David Dunn

SOURCE: Collider, ComingSoon.net

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