There has been no shortage of rumors swirling around The Batman over the past few months, regarding star Ben Affleck and his potential exit from the standalone sequel. A report surfaced in August that the actor was in fact leaving, and although that report was later retracted, Jon Hamm (Mad Men) has express his interest in the role, and director Matt Reeves is reportedly eyeing Jake Gyllenhaal. There has been a lot of back-and-forth between the studio and Affleck, with this latest report claiming the studio is "sour" on Ben. If the actor were to outright bail on The Batman at this point, Jake Gyllenhaal} will likely get the call to replace him. Here's what an unnamed sourced had to say about Jake Gyllenhaal replacing Ben Affleck.
"Gyllenhaal is probably Batman. Affleck is not out of it yet. That's the thing, he still has a contract. But the studio is sour on him. If Ben rolls, Jake is in. Kind of a weird web. These guys both know they control each other's destiny."
There was a report in late November that revealed Jake Gyllenhaal really wants the Batman role but the studio isn't 100% sold on this prospect. It seems Warner Bros. may have changed their tune, since it could be a foregone conclusion that Gyllenhaal steps in, as soon as Affleck steps out. This latest report claims that the dealings between Affleck and the studio have been an, "enormous tug-of-war" ever since 2016, when Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad came out, with the studio often trying to pull out "all the stops" in an effort to have him stick around. Now the studio is reportedly "over" Affleck.
Ben Affleck is still contractually obligated to star in The Batman, but if the studio is really "over" Affleck, then it's possible they could let the star out of his contract and start over with a new Batman, supposedly played by Jake Gyllenhaal. At one point, Ben Affleck was slated to star in The Batman, while also directing from a script he wrote with Geoff Johns. Matt Reeves took over as director, and confirmed that he has tossed the Affleck/Johns script, starting over from scratch. Shooting is set to begin this summer, so it's possible that we may hear something official about who is in fact playing The Batman sooner rather than later.
There was another report in December that claimed Ben Affleck will return as Batman in the studio's upcoming Flashpoint movie, but, oddly enough, not in The Batman. There was also a report last week that claimed The Batman was set outside the current DCEU timeline and that the Flashpoint movie will be the last time that Ben Affleck plays Batman. This report surfaced at Revenge of the Fans, but until we have any confirmation from Warner Bros. about who will star in The Batman, all we have is rumors.