Ever since it was first rumored, Ben Affleck's standalone The Batman movie has appeared as the saving grace of the DC Films extended universe. But this past week saw all that change, after acclaimed author Bret Easton Ellis called the screenplay a mess. His comments went viral, and suddenly fans had doubts. Is The Batman going to suck, too? Well, Joe Manganiello doesn't think so. And he's arrived today with some encouraging words.
Joe Manganiello was revealed as Deathstroke earlier this year in a quick bit of behind-the-scenes footage shared by The Batman star, director, producer and co-writer Ben Affleck. It's believed that the bad guy has a quick cameo in Justice League before taking on role of main villain in the upcoming Bruce Wayne solo movie. Joe Manganiello recent spoke with Mark Madden on Player.fm, where he gave some insight into what is being planned.
"When I met Ben we sat down and we talked about, you know, the role. We talked about the movie. His take is a fresh take but I think the audience is going to be surprised. Because it's a road that no one's really gone down that's completely integral to, you know, who Batman is. And I think it's gonna be refreshing but at the same time completely familiar. But it's going to take this franchise in a direction that I think A LOT of people are going to be really happy about. It's going to be gritty and action packed and cerebral and all of those elements that people love about Batman."
The one thing he doesn't say is that it's going to be 'a mess'. And of course he wouldn't this early in the game. The actor had previously stated that The Batman will start shooting in early 2017. That has never been announced by Warner Bros. and DC Films. Ben Affleck, while promoting his recent thriller The Accountant, wouldn't even confirm that the movie was actually happening and said it wouldn't happen if the script wasn't 100% ready and good to go.
Though the script, which is being written and constantly polished by Ben Affleck and Geoff Johns, is not earning high praise behind closed doors, Manganiello doesn't believe the hype. And neither should fans, since this is coming from an Oscar winner and one of DC's top talents. Says Joe about his faith in Ben Affleck to get the movie right.
"Ben's a great director, man. I mean the last movie that man directed won best picture. He's got an Oscar for writing. Like, this is all the components to go down as a... everything is lined up for a really really really great movie. Not only a superhero movie but just a great great movie."
Right now, Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne, Joe Manganiello as Deathstroke, Jeremy Irons as Alfred and J.K. Simmons as Commissioner Gordon are the only confirmed cast members for The Batman. The movie has been rumored to open in Arkham Asylum, or take place partially in the prison, and will include a great many of Batman's most iconic foes, with Will Smith's Deadshot also expected to show up.
The Batman doesn't have an official release date, but there are two unclaimed dates on the DC Films docket. Some believe Ben Affleck's solo caped crusader adventure will either arrive on October 5, 2018, just in time for the Halloween Holiday, or it will arrive in the winter of the following year, on November 1, 2019. However it shakes out, it sounds like Warner Bros. wants this to be a cold weather flick, and its unlikely we'll see it arrive in the summer.