A few weeks ago, Ben Affleck officially stepped down as director of The Batman, the upcoming solo Bat-movie currently being assembled over at Warner Bros. At the time, all involved put on a good face about the situation, but Affleck's official statement on the matter had the tone of a dude assuring his partner that "it's not a break-up, we're just taking some time apart."
Now word is circulating that Affleck wants out of the role completely. This is according to Collider's John Campea, who appeared on the Collider Talk podcast last night to say the following (as excerpted by The Playlist):
“Ben Affleck, make no mistake, he wants out. He doesn’t want to be Batman anymore.”
Campea added that his sources have told him that Affleck is in active discussions with Warner Bros. to remove himself from his DCEU deal which includes The Batman movie tentatively scheduled for 2019. However, if a deal cannot be reached in time, this solo outing will be the last appearance Affleck makes as the character.
In terms of this being legit or not: The Playlist points out that Campea claimed this information came to him via three different sources within Warner Bros. They also point out that Campea instructed the audience to take the news with "a grain of salt".
On the one hand, if Campea's got three independent sources making this claim, well, he's well within his bounds to report that piece of information. On the other hand, qualifying the scoop with that "grain of salt" comment indicates there's either a) at least some question as to whether or not Affleck will really leave the role, or b) that's just Campea pulling off the traditional movie-blogger CYA move. We can't say for sure either way, but my suspicion is that it's somewhere up the middle: Affleck's in until he's officially out, and there's some amount of trouble brewing in paradise.
For the time being, this is "word on the street" stuff, here for us to speculate on and nothing more. Please feel free to do so now in the comments below.