Ben Affleck announced today that he will not direct The Batman as previously planned. Instead, he will stay on to produce and star in the movie.
“There are certain characters who hold a special place in the hearts of millions,” Affleck said in a statement. “Performing this role demands focus, passion and the very best performance I can give. It has become clear that I cannot do both jobs to the level they require. Together with the studio, I have decided to find a partner in a director who will collaborate with me on this massive film. I am still in this, and we are making it, but we are currently looking for a director. I remain extremely committed to this project, and look forward to bringing this to life for fans around the world.”
According to Variety, War for the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves is at the top of Affleck’s list.
“Warner Bros. fully supports Ben Affleck’s decision and remains committed to working with him to bring a standalone Batman picture to life,” the studio said in a statement.
Update: Batman News recorded an emergency podcast to discuss this breaking news. Take a listen below!
Last month, Affleck got honest about the pressure of directing a Batman movie. “But when that day comes, should that day come, I’m sure that’s going to be the most pressure, the most stress I have ever experienced in my professional life,” he told USA Today. “There’s no doubt.”