'The Batman' Director Addresses Rumors of Ben Affleck's Retirement

Ever since Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice first premiered in theaters over two years ago, rumors have been swirling about Ben Affleck's continued involvement as the Caped Crusader.

And though it seemed lately like Affleck would be stepping down from his role as Batman in the upcoming solo film, writer and director Matt Reeves recently issued an update that cautioned fans from expecting Affleck to depart the project. But he also did not rule out a new actor playing the role either.

Speaking at the Television Critics Association's summer press tour, Reeves, revealed that he's still speaking with Affleck about the project, though he wouldn't confirm whether or not he'd be under the cape and cowl.

"There are ways in which all of this connects to DC, to the DC universe as well," Reeves said. "We’re one piece of many pieces so I don’t want to comment on that except to say that I’m focused very specifically on this aspect of the DC world."

Given Reeves' crafty dodging of these particular details, it seems like he has ideas for both including Affleck as well as adding someone else to the picture, probably diving into Batman's history via flashback.

"From the beginning, what I had always spoken about with Warner Brothers and what I was excited about was being in the Batuniverse and really doing something within that sphere," Reeves said. "That was always what it was going to be so in that way it hasn’t changed a lot since I first met with them. It’s very much the same thrust if that makes sense.

"A lot of things have happened since then but the movie, and why I’m excited about it, is it continues to be the same inspirations and excitement of what we talked about in the beginning."

So it doesn't sound like Affleck is completely out the door. This might be another opportunity to segue to a different actor with Affleck fulfilling his Batman-related obligations to Warner Bros.

But Reeves' wording does make it seem like he's open to the possibility of making major changes — and that those changes might have been in his script from day one.

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The Batman is one of the most anticipated projects from DC Films and Warner Bros., considering its potential in reshaping their plans for their superhero universe. And with Reeves' draft coming in soon, we might see some major progress on the project in the very near future.

Additional reporting by Scott Huver.