The internet almost exploded Thursday night when Warner Bros. officially announced that Ben Affleck had been cast as Batman/Bruce Wayne in Zack Snyder's upcoming sequel to Man of Steel. This was a surprise to many, especially given that all the other casting rumors for the role had actors such as Josh Brolin, Joe Manganiello, Richard Armitage, Matthew Goode, and Max Martini as being up for the role, with nary a mention of Affleck. Pieces of the story about how Affleck got the part have now surfaced.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, talks began between Snyder, Warner Bros. and Affleck earlier this year. After completing work on Man of Steel, Snyder reportedly had an idea for a follow-up and the studio began to gauge interest from actors, including the rumored Josh Brolin and Ryan Gosling. Affleck was open to the idea and began discussing the story and the character with Snyder and when he liked what he heard, negotiations began for him to appear.
Since the announcement many fans have celebrated the choice, others have remained optimistic, and many have been very vocal in their opposition, even going as far as to create online petitions. Like it or not though, Affleck is here to stay - the actor is said to have signed on for a multi-picture deal that begins with 2015's Superman/Batman film. The trade adds that Affleck will shoot Gone Girl from September until February, then shift to the Superman/Batman film from February to August (while doing pre-production on Live By Night), then tackle that film, a Prohibition gangster movie, as writer-director-star next fall.
Man of Steel's Henry Cavill will reprise his role as Superman in the film along with co-stars Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne and Diane Lane.
The new film is being scripted by David S. Goyer from a story he co-created with Zack Snyder. Charles Roven and Deborah Snyder are producing, with Benjamin Melniker, Michael E. Uslan and Wesley Coller serving as executive producers. It is scheduled to hit theaters on July 17, 2015.