2. Live by Night
By most accounts, Live by Night is a good period piece riddled with flaws. Its release may have been strategically manipulated for Oscar buzz, which it didn’t receive, but audiences weren’t compelled to give it a chance. This resulted in the prohibition-era crime drama becoming a box office flop. Unfortunately, Live by Night’s failure cost Warner Bros. $75 million, most of which the studio isn’t expected to see a return on.
Maybe Ben Affleck feels the need to reassess his work behind the camera. Perhaps a break from balancing multiple roles is in order. Truth be told, where he found the time to write, direct, and star in his passion project is a mystery for his cape and cowl-wearing counterpart. Could Live by Night have been a rush job? We’ll likely never know, but we do know that rushing The Batman was out of the question for the director. With Warner Bros. insistent on getting these films rolling as fast as possible, Affleck may have requested more time than the DCEU can muster in its still incipient stage. That in mind, it’s not beyond reason that Live by Night, if it was indeed a hurried production, gave the actor all the answers he needed going forward. Such a quick turn around in helming another multi-million dollar film was probably the Bane that broke the Bat’s back.