Last we checked in on the perpetually-crumbling Justice League film, writer Will Beall’s first script was allegedly locked in the deepest, darkest cell of Arkham Asylum, never to be seen again. Almost everything about this seemingly doomed DC and Warner Bros. answer to Marvel’s The Avengers has been bad news, and now the rumor mill would have us believe that this cinematic kryptonite is poisoning the Batman franchise as well.
After the Beall script news hit the Intertubes, another report suggested that Warner just wanted to wait to see how Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel performs this summer before moving ahead with Justice League’s targeted release date of 2015, which of course coincides with the Avengers sequel. The only problem with that, suggests one questionable-but-intense source, is that it leaves Bruce Wayne trapped in silver screen limbo.
Remember, the plan (allegedly) was to introduce the cinematic DCU Batman in the JL film. So, will Batman still be rebooted? And, will this rebooted Batman on film be introduced in a solo film without having it jibe with a future JL film/cinematic DCU? I asked a good FOBOF – one who keeps his/her ear close to the ground on such matters – those very questions.
“Don’t worry about the Batman [film] franchise,” he/she said, “it’s [Warner Bros.’] most valuable [DC Comics-based] asset.” He She continued, “I believe that they are now looking at introducing [the rebooted] Batman in a solo film, though that will likely take place later than they initially planned. They are extreemly worried how [the Batman film franchise] would be affected if JUSTCE LEAGUE bombs…and rightfully so.”
“The fact that what should be the core fanbase of a Justice League film isn’t on board is making them sweat as well,” he/she adds.
So I asked him/her the obvious question: If there is no JL film in 2015 and MAN OF STEEL is a big hit, when might we next see Batman on film?
“Under that scenario, I’d say around 2019 or so.”
With all due respect to BOF, this rumor and source is a bit sloppy, as it needed two updates to clarify that Justice League hasn’t been pushed back to 2021 – for starters, Skynet or general public stupidity will have killed us all by then – and Man of Steel is not Justice League’s Iron Man, in that it wasn’t created to set up a universe.
Either way, it still raises a very interesting question about the priority of the next Batman installment, while deflecting our attention away from much sillier ideas like Ben Affleck playing Batman and directing Justice League. Whatever the true story may be, I’d be willing to bet that Warner execs would wipe their butts with every last Justice League note if it meant getting a new Batman movie out next year.