[dropcap]W[/dropcap]e knew we wouldn’t be kept waiting too much longer to find out who would be playing Batman in the next Man of Steel film. Rumours were flying about everyone from Ryan Gosling to Josh Brolin to the Dark Knight himself, Christian Bale (who, rumour had it, might have been paid a ridiculous sum of money to return to the role). But the rumours have all been shot out of the sky, as it has now been confirmed that the Oscar-winning Ben Affleck will be donning the cape.
Affleck has previous with super hero films, having taken on the role of Matt Murdoch in 2003’s Daredevil. While the film was poorly received, Affleck has gone up in the world in the ten years since, honing his acting style and trying his hand at directing. His first directorial effort Argo, in which he also starred, bagged itself three Oscars earlier this year, including Best Film.
The Batman we can expect to see in the as yet untitled Man of Steel sequel is thought to be based on Frank Miller’s version of the hero from his 1986 comic book series The Dark Knight Returns – in other words, a more experienced, middle-aged and disillusioned Batman. At 41 years old, Affleck certainly fits the physical bill, while still being just rugged and muscular enough to be more than capable of portraying a slightly over-the-hill caped crusader. He’ll be starring opposite a fresh-faced young Superman in the form of Henry Cavill.
Man of Steel director Zack Snyder is also set to helm the sequel. In a statement, he said:
“Ben provides an interesting counter-balance to Henry’s Superman. He has the acting chops to create a layered portrayal of a man who is older and wiser than Clark Kent and bears the scars of a seasoned crime fighter, but retain the charm that the world sees in billionaire Bruce Wayne. I can’t wait to work with him.”
Production on the hotly anticipated sequel is expected to begin next year, for release in summer 2015.