UPDATE: ‘The Batman’ Director Matt Reeves Speaks on Film’s Place in the DCEU

Drew Dietsch

UPDATE: The Batman director Matt Reeves took to Twitter to set the record straight about comments he made regarding whether or not The Batman would be part of the DC Extended Universe.

Looks like Reeves wasn’t quite clear in his original statement. We’d mentioned that it might have been a possibility this was what he meant. Looks like we should have assumed just that. Looks like The Batman will be a standalone film in the sense that it won’t be beholden or saddled down with connections to other DCEU films. That’s probably a relief to fans. Batman is character that operates well enough on his own. Here’s hoping Reeves – whose track record of films is EXCELLENT – gets to make the movie he wants without worrying about a bunch of other comic book connections.

Original article follows.

The Batman has been a film of immense curiosity for fans. After a number of behind-the-scenes shake ups, War for the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves stepped in as director and took the project back to page one. Well, it might have been more than just that. If recent comments from Reeves are to be believed, The Batman is going to be a standalone movie that doesn’t connect to the DC Extended Universe.

What Reeves Said

In an interview with radio station KRCW, Reeves mentioned the upcoming film and dropped a piece of information that deserves some dissection. Here’s what he said:

“Well I have a vision for a way to do something with that character [Batman] that feels like it resonates with me personally, and a perspective that can grow out into other things. When they [Warner Bros.] approached me, what they said was ‘look, it’s a standalone, it’s not part of the extended universe.’”

That seems pretty cut and dried. It’s possible that Reeves meant this new film won’t be connected to the bigger storylines of the DC Extended Universe. But, it’s pretty hard not to take his comment at face value. So, what does this mean if it’s true? A whole lot.

Is the DC Extended Universe in Trouble?

With the exception of Wonder Woman, the DC Extended Universe has not been warmly embraced by critics. Warner Bros. might be trying to distance themselves from that experiment and see if standalone films are much more profitable, critically successful, and easier to produce. Could we have DC Extended Universe films running concurrently against standalone films? It’s possible. But if so, why would The Batman be one of these standalone films? Isn’t Ben Affleck playing Bruce Wayne in that movie? He’s the official DC Extended Universe Batman, so it would be kind of weird to have him in a non-DCEU movie.

Unless…

Is Ben Affleck Actually Leaving the DCEU?

batman sad ben affleck Cropped

The news has been rife with stories about Ben Affleck’s displeasure of how Batman has been handled in the DCEU films. Having him direct The Batman was supposed to be a way to appease him and let him do what he wanted with the character. But, the pressures of the other DC films and controlling so much of The Batman was apparently too much. Affleck left the director’s chair and Matt Reeves took over. Could Reeves and Affleck not be seeing eye-to-eye?

If Affleck doesn’t leave, it will be intriguing to see how this standalone Batman film operates with him in the lead. If it’s simply a Batman story with no connection to the shared universe stories and characters, then that’s totally cool. But, if it is too far away from the DCEU style, will that alienate audiences? Or will they be disappointed if they don’t see any connections to other DC movies?

Things are clearing shifting over at Warner Bros. in regards to their DC characters. Just look at that news about a Joker standalone movie. We’ll keep our eyes and ears out for more news. It seems like these stories are becoming more frequent every day. I bet a lot of these questions will be answered once Justice League hits theaters on November 17.

Drew Dietsch
Drew Dietsch has written for CHUD.com, the News-Press, WhatCulture, and releases a weekly film review podcast, The Drew Reviews Podcast. He'll yak your ear off about horror movies, Jaws, RoboCop, and/or Batman if you let him.
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