Armie Hammer as Batman? No, Robert Pattinson has not been unexpectedly kicked off Matt Reeves's upcoming Batman movie. Instead, Hammer was set to play Batman in George Miller's planned Justice League movie back in 2007. The project was eventually scrapped and remains the subject of much online speculation. Now, Ryan Unicomb, the director of a documentary tracking the making of the film has posted a photo on Instagram of the Batman cowl that Hammer would have worn in the movie:
The color of the cowl is brown instead of the standard black or deep blue that fans instantly recognize. But that would presumably have changed as filming began. The ears are longer and more pointed than most other incarnations of the cowl, something Hammer's cowl has in common with the cowl worn by Pattinson in the footage of his Bat costume that Matt Reeves has released so far.
Also, Unicomb is quick to point out that this is just one of the cowls that were being developed for the movie. Miller's take on the Justice League would have been his most ambitious project to date if it had come to fruition. From what we know so far, the film would have taken its cue from one of the most famous storylines from the Justice League comics, when the files compiled by Batman to counter his teammate's powers and neutralize them in case they ever went rogue are stolen by a villain and used against them.
Aside from Armie Hammer as Batman, the movie was also set to star Adam Brody (The Flash), Common (Green Lantern), DJ Cotrona (Superman), Megan Gale (Wonder Woman), Hugh Keays-Byrne (Martian Manhunter), Santiago Cabrera (Aquaman), with Zoe Kasan as Iris Allen. But days away from when filming was supposed to begin, with the actors signed on, the costumes in the last stages of getting ready, and the script locked in, the project was abruptly canceled. Here's what Miller had to say about the reasons for the cancellation back in 2015:
"There was a writers strike. There was some legislation with a tax rebate to make it in Australia. It was the first film that came up, and there was a debate about whether it was Australian content even though I was driving it. It didn't have to be Australian content, but Australian control. But there was a board that no longer exists that the government cobbled together from people who knew nothing about the film industry. And they voted - they struck it down by one vote. We were all ready. Once that happened and then the writers' strike happened...it fell apart."
With his Justice League movie off the table, George Miller moved on to Mad Max: Fury Road, which ended up being declared one of the greatest action films ever made, leaving us to wonder how epic Miller's take on Justice League would have been. Hammer's dreams of playing Batman were also dashed, and his other attempt at superheroics with The Lone Ranger was a disappointment. All we can do now is look at the Batman cowl from the doomed movie and dream of what could have been.