Fan outcry over Ben Affleck playing Batman appears to have subsided a bit from a deafening screech to a dull roar, as people are hopefully now spending their time worrying about things that are significantly more important. We still have yet to hear from Affleck himself about taking on the iconic character in director Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel follow-up, but Affleck’s longtime friend Matt Damon has now chimed in with thoughts on how he thinks Affleck will do in the cape and cowl. In the process, Damon addressed the harsh internet reaction to the news, dashed hopes of him playing Robin, and talked about The Bourne Legacy. Hit the jump to read on.
This week on The Collision, we talk about Ben Affleck being cast as Batman in Man of Steel 2 , the fanboy reaction to that news, how fans think they know how best to run a studio, and much more. We also talk about the marketing of You’re Next, and rave about The World’s End.
Click here to listen to the new episode of The Collision, click here for the previous episode (“The ‘Realness’ of Superheroes and Kick-Ass 2“), click here to add the podcast to your RSS, and click here to find us on iTunes. To keep up to date with The Collision, you can follow us on Twitter at @MattGoldberg, @AdamChitwood, and @DrClawMD (Dave Trumbore). Hit the jump to check out the trailers for this week’s recommendations.
If all goes according to plan, three of the biggest films in recent memory will be in production at the same time. Marvel’s superhero team-up sequel The Avengers: Age of Ultron is slated to begin production next March, J.J. Abrams’ highly anticipated Star Wars: Episode VII is set to start filming in “early 2014,” and now word comes that director Zack Snyder’s untitled Man of Steel follow-up will start filming next February. For those of you just now coming out of a coma, Ben Affleck has been tapped to play Batman opposite Henry Cavill’s Superman in the Warner Bros. film, and the pic appears to be moving full-speed ahead towards its July 17, 2015 release date.
In addition to the filming dates of the Batman vs. Superman film, though, a new report also has confirmation that Affleck has indeed signed on to play Batman in multiple films. Hit the jump for more, including the specific shooting dates of Batman vs. Superman.
It should come as a surprise to no one that this week’s Top 5 is headlined by the news that Ben Affleck will inherit the cowl as the next Batman in Summer 2015′s Man of Steel sequel. And with good reason. Unless something goes drastically wrong, the movie is going to be an international blockbuster that millions will line up to see/pay for (yours truly included). That said, and like I mentioned last week, this weekend is one that I’ve been looking forward to for some time and one that I hope movie lovers will embrace; which is why Matt’s editorial on this being the best weekend of the summer earns the second spot in this week’s installment. If you need a break from the common blockbuster, sequel, reboot, remake, etc., this weekend is for you. If you believe original movies have a place at your local cineplex, here’s your chance to dig into your wallet and prove it. You might be paying to see your favorite movie of the summer or you might end up seeing something that doesn’t suit your tastes at all. Either way, you’ll come out of it a better movie fan than you went in.
All begging and pleading aside, on tap this week is the aforementioned Ben Affleck/Batman news, Matt’s editorial on this being the best weekend of the summer (which will start the begging and pleading all over again), a neat flashback video of George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, and Martin Scorsese discussing the future of movies in 1990 with Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel, interviews for The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, and a couple of noteworthy Star Wars: Episode VII tidbits. As is customary, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.
While you likely have an opinion on Ben Affleck being tapped to play Bruce Wayne/Batman in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel, you may have overlooked his participation in Brad Furman’s upcoming gambling thriller, Runner Runner. He looks comfortable playing a billionaire on his yacht in this first clip, which features Affleck and Justin Timberlake dabbling in a financial planning conversation of sorts. This relatively early scene sets up the relationship between Affleck’s entrepreneur and Timberlake’s poor college student that likely intensifies throughout the picture. Check out Steve’s interview with Timberlake here for more on Runner Runner.
Also starring Gemma Arterton, Anthony Mackie, David Costabile, Ben Schwartz and Oliver Cooper, Runner Runner opens October 4th. Hit the jump to watch the first clip.
When Warner Bros. announced last night that Ben Affleck has been cast as the new Batman in director Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel follow-up, the future of Affleck’s incredibly successful directorial career was thrown into question. Presumably Affleck will be getting a standalone Batman film in the near future, and he’s all but guaranteed to star in Justice League (which he might even end up directing). It now appears that the first directorial casualty of Affleck donning the cape and cowl has surfaced, as word comes that Crazy Heart helmer Scott Cooper is in talks to replace him as the writer and director of Warner Bros.’ feature film adaptation of the Stephen King novel The Stand.
Hit the jump for more, including the status of Affleck’s other directorial projects.
When it comes to a character as old and popular as Batman, everybody has an opinion. Following the announcement that a Batman/Superman movie was in the cards for Warner Bros., we knew there would be some debate over who the studio and director Zack Snyder should choose to don the cape and cowl for their Man of Steel follow-up. Early word was that they were looking to cast an older, more experienced Batman opposite Henry Cavill’s young Superman, and names like Josh Brolin and Jon Hamm were bandied about. However, when the studio announced last night that Ben Affleck has been cast in the role, the reaction was unsurprisingly vehement.
The internet specializes in snap judgments, and the casting of Affleck as Batman is no different. But fan outcry and caps-lock rants are premature; people are already rating a performance that we won’t see on screen for nearly two years. Hit the jump for more on why everybody needs to calm down.
He’s previously played a blind do-gooder in the 2003 Marvel/Fox production of Daredevil, but it looks as if Ben Affleck will be switching comic book allegiances and cowl colors to play Bruce Wayne/Batman in the untitled Man of Steel sequel. Henry Cavill will return to lead the film, which brings Superman and Batman together for the first time on screen, and is set to open July 17, 2015. Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne and Diane Lane will also reprise their roles. Hit the jump for all the details.
While Ben Affleck has been busy prepping his next directorial feature, the period Dennis Lehane adaptation Live by Night, it appears that he’ll be making time for another acting gig before going into production on his Argo follow-up. What director would cause Affleck to push back his first directorial project after winning the DGA Award, you might ask? Well David Fincher, of course. Affleck is now in talks to lead Fincher’s adaptation of the Gillian Flynn bestselling novel Gone Girl, which will solidify the pic as Fincher’s next film. Hit the jump for more on this exciting development, including which Oscar winning actresses are being eyed for the female lead.
A few new posters have landed online. Briefly:
- The Wolverine – A Japanese poster that makes us wonder once again why a guy with knives in his hands would need a sword. The film stars Hugh Jackman and open in 3D on July 26th.
- Runner Runner – Three character posters with gambling-related taglines for the thriller starring Justin Timberlake, Gemma Arterton, and Ben Affleck. The film opens September 27th.
- Frozen – A French teaser poster that’s much better than the U.S. version, which is basically just a title treatment. The film opens in 3D on November 27th, and features the voices of Kristen Bell, Jonathan Groff, and Idina Menzel.
- The 70th Annual Venice Film Festival – A neat poster that celebrates the work of Theo Angelopoulos and Federico Fellini. The film festival runs from August 28 – September 7th.
Hit the jump to check out the posters.
We’ve got new posters to share for these upcoming films:
- Out of the Furnace – The new revenge drama from Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) starring Christian Bale, Casey Affleck, Sam Shepard, Zoe Saldana, Willem Dafoe, Forest Whitaker, and Woody Harrelson opens in limited release on November 27th and expands on December 6th.
- Kick-Ass 2 – The upcoming action-comedy sequel stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Clark Duke, Donald Faison, John Leguizamo, Olga Kurkulina, and Jim Carrey. The film opens on August 16th.
- Runner, Runner – The thriller starring Justin Timberlake, Ben Affleck, Gemma Arterton, Ben Schwartz, Dayo Okeniyi, and Oliver Cooper opens September 27th.
Hit the jump to check out the new posters.
20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for director Brad Furman‘s (The Lincoln Lawyer) crime thriller Runner, Runner. The film stars Justin Timberlake as a Princeton student who is cheated out of his tuition money playing online poker and ends up indebted to the site’s corrupt boss (Ben Affleck). Furman’s The Lincoln Lawyer turned out to be a pleasantly surprising dramatic thriller, and Runner, Runner appears to quite similar to that pic in tone. No one looks to be gunning for Oscar glory here, but the interplay between Affleck and Timberlake is promising and it’s fun to see Affleck taking on a more villainous role. Moreover, the Puerto Rico locale provides a nice change of pace from the gritty, metropolis-set thrillers that populate the marketplace nowadays.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Gemma Arterton, Ben Schwartz, Dayo Okeniyi and Oliver Cooper. Runner, Runner opens September 27th.
Bill Hader is leaving Saturday Night Live after eight wonderful seasons. In all those years, Hader’s signature recurring character Stefon somehow never grew tired. Hader and co-creator John Mulaney consistently kept the formula fresh, coming up with inspired club names, passwords, and characters for each new Weekend Update appearance.
In last night’s season finale—hosted by Ben Affleck, who also hosted when Stefon debuted—the writers of course had to bring back Stefon for a farewell appearance. It puts a nice button on the romantic tension between Stefon and Update host Seth Meyers, and in doing so, assembles all the crazy characters (most of them midgets) Stefon has mentioned in his guide to New York nightlife. Watch it after the jump.
Saturday Night Live is closing out their 2012-2013 season strong, bringing back three SNL veterans to host. Previously announced for the May 4th show was Zach Galifianakis, who has The Hangover Part III coming out next month as well. Galifianakis has hosted SNL before, and I can only hope he brings out his chops singing Annie again. SNL has had plenty of opening monologues that involved singing this year, but I can’t help but think that Galifianakis is going to have a stand out one regardless. The musical guest will be Of Monsters and Men. Hit the jump for more on the episodes hosted by Kristen Wiig and Ben Affleck.
Warner Bros. has reportedly closed on a deal to adapt Nathaniel Philbrick’s upcoming book Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution with Ben Affleck tagged to possibly direct. Affleck will send the book to screenwriter Chris Terrio (Argo) which marks it as a substantial project moving forward. Affleck is currently busy adapting the Dennis Lehane novel Live By Night which he’ll direct, produce and star in. Hit the jump for more on Bunker Hill.