DC Films have gone through a lot of evolutions over the past years, with some projects going through incarnations within the past half-decade. One similar project that has managed to endure is Batgirl, which was initially announced as a Joss Whedon-headed project in 2017, only to gain a totally different creative team in the form of directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah and writer Christina Hodson, to getting a star in Leslie Grace.
Michael Keaton Will Return As Batman In ‘Batgirl’
As parts of the Batgirl film have started to come together, fans are curious to see how it fits into the ever-evolving DCEU, and on Wednesday, we got an answer that some might not have been expecting. An official listing from Warner Bros. suggested that veteran actor Michael Keaton will be again reprising the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman in Batgirl, a role he played in Tim Burton’s Batman film and is also slated to play in the forthcoming The Flash movie.
Where does Ben Affleck’s version go?
This news was met with different reactions: while some DC fans were happy to see Keaton playing Batman once again, others are quite upset that Batman isn’t being played by Ben Affleck in Batgirl. Affleck has been DCEU’s Batman since 2016’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and although we’re still a long way from even getting any context about The Dark Knight’s role in Batgirl, one thing has become quite clear — it shouldn’t make a difference which version of the character appears in the film.
Before the Keaton news came in, it had never been revealed which version of Batman would appear in Batgirl, apart from the film’s directors who hinted in an interview that it would be “the real Batman.” Given that three actors are already set to play Batman within the next year: Affleck and Keaton in The Flash, and Robert Pattinson in Matt Reeves’ The Batman, it is still anyone’s guess as to what that could mean. Still, the return of Commissioner James Gordon, played by J.K. Simmons, who was last seen in Justice League, working alongside Affleck’s Batman, alongside the rumors that the film could tie to the Birds of Prey and the Black Canary film — making fans assume that it would be Ben Affleck’s version of the character.
Batgirl doesn’t have a release date yet
Still, with rumors surrounding Keaton’s role in the DC Films world post The Flash, with fans suggesting that he could play a Nick Fury-like mentor role, crossing over with other characters in the main universe. After all, we are aware that the events of The Flash are expected to shake up the DC multiverse going ahead, and that Ben Affleck might be done acting in DCEU for the foreseeable future. If The Flash shifts everything to make Keaton the primary Batman instead of Ben Affleck, that would certainly impact Batgirl in a way, both with regards to Batgirl and Gordon’s storylines.
Batgirl will be released at a later date, only on HBO Max.