Well this has to be good news for the DC Extended Universe, right? Outside of the Superman films and Aquaman, every other film, from Wonder Woman to The Flash and now The Batman, has had very public behind the scenes shake-up. Even when a director stays on the film, it has a rocky post production and is rushed into theaters as an incoherent mess (Suicide Squad). I understand Warner Brothers must compete with Marvel on creating a full interweaving universe of superheroes, and they have some of the best (cough…Batman…cough). But they are rushing and arrogant and lost. It is clear they don’t know what they are doing, and even when they cast the films correctly and are tonally different from other superhero films (I don’t mind the serious tone), their scripts and decision making abilities are awful.
But I remain hopeful because Wonder Woman looks like a lot of fun, and The Batman was supposed to be directed by Ben Affleck, until it wasn’t. Thankfully Warner Brothers found a solid replacement in Matt Reeves. Reeves is the sort of filmmaker that is very thoughtful and intelligent when creating a movie. He doesn’t half-ass anything and his movies have strong storytelling and thematic depth. Just watch Dawn of the Planet of the Apes or Let Me In to see how patient and captivating he is as a director. He has the experience of filming blockbusters, which gives me confidence in the film. He isn’t some fresh faced director running on the high of an acclaimed indie like seemingly half of the blockbuster films today (looking at you, Colin Trevorrow).
Reeves is a talented filmmaker and I hope that Warner Brothers is as patient as Reeves is as a storyteller. Warner Brothers was kind enough to let Affleck try to conceive something original. Please let Reeves do the same. And I hope it’s an adaptation of Hush, because that story is in line with Reeves’ sensibilities as a director. Whether some of Affleck’s story contributions (like having Joe Manganiello as Deathstroke) or none are kept remain to be seen.
Matt Reeves, I hope you create something deserving of this beloved character, and I hope Warner Brothers has finally learned that trusting a director and his or her creative team is more important than rushing a film out to meet a deadline. The better the blockbuster, the longer its financial legs are.