5. Media/Fan Scrutiny
In a recent interview, Affleck said the following:
“It’s one of those things that’s really frustrating because Live by Night took me a year and a half to write it and get it ready, and worked really hard. It’s just that nobody gave a s—, no one was like ‘Where’s Live by Night!’ But with Batman, I keep on getting ‘Where’s the f—— Batman!’ Wow, I’m working, give me a second!”
Could this kind of hyper-interest have informed his withdrawal from the post? It’s possible. Creating art in a vacuum on your own terms, without anyone taking a glance over your shoulder every several seconds must be a privilege directors relish. It’s likely a privilege few directors working on superhero films are given an opportunity to enjoy. Directing a Batman movie is perhaps the most stressful of projects for that reason alone.
Every outing Ben Affleck has been on in recent months, whether for a movie he’s directing or starring in, has always shifted to a conversation about the Bat. The above quote makes it perfectly clear it hasn’t been pleasant either. Fans want a masterpiece, journalists want a story, and the DCEU, to many, is in need of a saving grace. Bundle that with the fact that he’s playing the g–damned Batman and the weight of the multiverse seems to be on his shoulders. There’s only so much one person can take, and even the Caped Crusader would falter a bit.