Warner Bros. has done an amazing job of revitalizing the DC Extended Universe of shared continuity movies following the critical failures of Justice League and Suicide Squad, with their grim takes on superheroes and villains and the dark and oily world in which they operate. Patty Jenkins gave us an inspiring movie in Wonder Woman that, despite its setting during the First World War, felt like a breath of fresh air compared to the nihilism of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice; James Wan showed us with Aquaman that superhero movies can be just as sweeping and epic in scale as a fantasy series like Lord of the Rings or a sci-fi series like Star Wars; and David Sandberg reminded us of our own childhood wonder at the thought of having superpowers in SHAZAM! But…
The foundation of the DC Universe has always been built upon Superman and Batman and they have both been big question marks for some time now. So when will the Brave and the Bold return to their places of prominence? There’s no telling when we will get another Superman movie. It’s been six years since Superman had a solo movie. He basically shared billing with Batman in Batman v Superman and he played only a small, albeit important, role in Justice League. And, last we heard, Henry Cavill was maybe, sorta, or not, leaving the role.
But, at least a solo Batman movie is on the horizon, the first of this new DCEU continuity. Batman hasn’t had his own movie since The Dark Knight Trilogy concluded in 2012 and the older, meaner Batman played by Ben Affleck has been divisive, to say the least, and has really only co-starred in his last two movie appearances (we’re not even counting the blink-and-you’ll miss scenes in Suicide Squad). When Affleck stepped down as director of the new standalone Batman movie and then had the script he wrote thrown out by new director Matt Reeves, it seemed unlikely he would continue to portray the character.
We now know that is true, at least as far as Reeve’s movie is concerned. While Affleck may continue to portray the older Batman in the Justice League “present day” continuity, Reeves’ movie takes place during Batman’s younger days and focuses more on his skills as a world-class detective than his ability to beat people up. And, who might this newer, younger, smarter Batman be? According to Variety, Twilight star Robert Pattinson is the “top choice” to play Bruce Wayne/Batman. Pattinson managed to shake off the vampire glitter by taking more daring roles in independent movies like David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis and Claire Denis’ High Life and Dark Knight filmmaker Christopher Nolan even chose him to star in his hush-hush new action movie, but fan reaction is bound to be divided about his casting.
It’s unclear at this time how The Batman will fit into the greater DCEU continuity. The movie is slated for release on June 25, 2021.