Ben Affleck Claims His Batman Is Darker than We've Ever Seen Before, Calls Him 'Embittered and Cynical'

Thursday, 02 July 2015 - 12:01PM
DC Comics
Batman
Batman v Superman
Thursday, 02 July 2015 - 12:01PM
Ben Affleck Claims His Batman Is Darker than We've Ever Seen Before, Calls Him 'Embittered and Cynical'
We're not going to lie, Ben Affleck's take on Batman (have we all given up on "Batfleck" yet?) is one of the most exciting parts of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. According to Affleck, his Caped Crusader will be a darker, grimmer character than we've ever seen before, which is saying something after Christian Bale's palpably tortured, gravelly-voiced version.

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"He's on the verge of being swallowed up by the anger and the rage that we see haunt this character in the other manifestations of it," Affleck told EW. "But this guy is further down the line and has become more embittered and cynical."
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Affleck also told EW that this darker interpretation is reflected in the depiction of Gotham City, which was portrayed as perpetually "rainy and miserable" in order to symbolize "the long dark night of the soul and whatnot." Incidentally, this confirms that the entire movie will probably be as grayscale and rainy as the first trailer:



It's no wonder that this iteration of the character is so dark, considering that it's partially based on Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns. In the neo-noir comic, an older and more grizzled Batman reluctantly comes out of retirement to fight crime, escapes after a scuffle with the Gotham police, and has an explosive confrontation with Superman, who has been tasked with bringing him to justice. 

But while the "embittered" and "cynical" characterization of Batman may be true to the comic, it seems that the roles of Batman and Superman will be somewhat reversed. According to EW's description of Batman's role in the film, he takes it upon himself to control Superman rather than the other way around: "Worried that Superman's unequaled power makes him more of a potential fascistic overlord than the hero we need, he makes it his duty to take him out of the sky for good."

Henry Cavill seemed to confirm the anxieties surrounding Superman's near-omnipotence when he gave insights into his character: "I like to think that Man of Steel was the perspective of the world from Clark, Kal-El, looking at the world and trying to exist with in it," said Cavill. "Batman v Superman is definitely more mankind's perspective of Superman."

And finally, director Zack Snyder revealed that the idea for the entire film started as a pitch for a Batman v Superman Easter egg at the end of Man of Steel:

Opening quote
"I said, 'What about at the end of the movie we do a scene where there's a crate full of kryptonite delivered to Wayne Manor,'" said Snyder. "Everyone was like…'Okaay.' Once you say it out loud it's a problem because you can't unsay it."
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There were rumors that this scene would start off Batman v Superman, but the rumors must have come from this pitch meeting rather than an actual scene, as EW claims that this specific idea was nixed entirely and instead evolved into the Batman v Superman film. This comes as a relief, as this particular scene would have been far too on-the-nose. Hopefully, the final version of Batman v Superman will be a little more subtle, but it is Zack Snyder, so it'll be hit-or-miss.

Batman v Superman also stars Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor, Diane Lane as Martha Kent, Jeremy Irons as Alfred Pennyworth, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, and Ray Fisher as Cyborg. The film will hit theaters on March 25, 2016.
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Ben Affleck Claims His Batman Is Dark: 'Embittered and Cynical'