Warner Bros. is reportedly working on plans to "usher out Affleck's Batman gracefully." Ben Affleck is set to appear at Comic-Con this weekend to promote the DCEU's upcoming Justice League movie and unveil a new trailer, but there could be trouble underneath the surface for the future of Affleck's portrayal of the Dark Knight. The news comes after The Batman director Matt Reeves revealed that he had thrown out Affleck's original script and was starting from scratch.
A source close to the project has told The Hollywood Reporter that "the studio is working on plans to usher out Affleck's Batman gracefully, addressing the change in some shape or form in one of the upcoming DC films." It is important to take any information that comes from a "source" with a grain of salt, but with all of the events surrounding The Batman in the past year, this does seem quite plausible.
Though it has been reported in the past that Warner Bros.' Toby Emmerich has said that "Ben is our Batman" and that they intend to "keep him in the cowl as long as we can." Even Matt Reeves has said in the past that he intends to keep Ben Affleck as his Batman. But as far as anybody knows, the movie still does not have an official release date and is still currently being rewritten by Reeves, which could mean that it could be a while before we see anybody jumping into the Batsuit. Fans have joked that by the time the movie gets into production that Affleck may be better suited for Bruce Wayne's butler Alfred, a fair assumption since Reeves has reportedly set his sights on his very own Batman trilogy, an idea that makes sense after coming to the project after the Planet of the Apes trilogy.
There is a whole bunch of different ways that Warner Bros. can approach the subject of replacing Affleck. They could keep him in the Justice League franchise while hiring somebody new to takeover the standalone movies, which could be interesting, but seems unlikely according to the DCEU's current model. Another route would be to go the way of the 1990's Batman that just changed actors and have a fresh face in Justice League as well. Maybe The Batman gets shelved for the unforeseeable future or at least until Justice League is finished. We know that Shazam! will be the next DC project to go into production.
Again, nothing has been officially confirmed about Ben Affleck leaving The Batman or his replacement. But the rumor does seem to be following a pattern for the project, which started back when Affleck stepped down from director. All of this news comes just as things were starting to look up for the project as Reeves has teased bringing back the detective element to Batman while also stating that he wants fans to get inside the head of the Caped Crusader. We may possibly get some Batman news at Comic-Con this weekend, but I wouldn't hold my breath.