With the recent news that Ben Affleck will not be directing the upcoming solo Batman movie, to which is both starring and writing, a great many names have popped up on who might be taking the helm in his place. Warner Bros. is supposedly considering such A-List names like Matt Reeves, Gavin O’Connor, Denis Villeneuve, and George Miller. If the fans had their way, however, it would be ex-Affleck friend and geek god Kevin Smith taking over the reins.
When Affleck was quoted as saying “I have decided to find a partner in a director who will collaborate with me on this massive film”, a lot of fans where like “Hey, why not Kevin Smith?”. And why not indeed?
Kevin Smith and Affleck where once thick as thieves, having worked together on several Kevin Smith projects (Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jersey Girl) and though they have since drifted apart, they were once very close friends. Smith is a notably big fan of comic books and Batman, having wrote several Batman comic titles including Batman: Cacophny and Batman: The Widening Gyre. Smith even has a popular pulp culture podcast called Fatman on Batman w/ cohost Marc Bernardin. Smith is also, of course, a film writer and director. Recently, his affinity of comics and superheroes lead him to directing two episodes of CW’s The Flash and a recently episode of Supergirl. He even has an upcoming episode of The Goldbergs that he directed themed around the release of ’89 Batman. While Smith is often mocked for his directing prowess, having worked with Affleck and given his profound love of Batman, it’s not hard to want to wish he be given the chance for something this big. It’s like his whole life has been leading up to this.
So what does Kevin Smith have to say about all this? As, usual, Smith is as self deprecating as they come.
— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) January 31, 2017
Smith’s self awareness is to be admired, for sure. Have to respect the fact that Smith is very open about what he does and knows he has limits and makes no excuses for anyone. He, however, shouldn’t take himself out of the equation so easily. Yeah, he’s not wrong. His directing skills are nowhere near to the point where he could be responsible for a multi-million dollar movie like The Batman. But his credibility as a film maker, and more importantly, his unbridled passion for Batman and comics in general, well, he should be brought on as a co-writer or consultant. We’d have a much better DCEU than we have today if mega geeks like Smith were around to regulate and influence.
The original plan was for The Batman to begin filming this year, so it will be interesting to see how that schedule changes now that there currently is not a director in place.