The rumours were true – Warner Bros. has indeed brought in director Matt Reeves to helm the next solo Batman movie, thereby securing the immediate future of one of the studio’s most important comic book franchises.

Ben Affleck, who played the Caped Crusader for the first time in the critically panned Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice last year, was initially in line to direct The Batman. However, he announced last month that he was stepping down from that position to concentrate on his role in front of the camera.

Reeves, whose credits include Cloverfield and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, was then rumoured to be Warner Bros.’ favoured candidate to step in, and those reports were confirmed on Thursday (February 23rd).

Matt ReevesMatt Reeves will direct 'The Batman'

“We are thrilled to have Matt Reeves taking the helm of Batman, the crown jewel of our DC slate,” Toby Emmerich, the president and chief content officer of Warner Bros. Pictures Group, said in a statement. “Matt’s deep roots in genre films and his evolution into an emotional world-building director make him the perfect filmmaker to guide the Dark Knight through this next journey.”

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Releasing his own statement, Reeves, whose upcoming War for the Planet of the Apes is set for release in July, said: “I have loved the Batman story since I was a child. He is such an iconic and compelling character, and one that resonates with me deeply. I am incredibly honoured and excited to be working with Warner Bros. to bring an epic and emotional new take on the Caped Crusader to the big screen.”

A couple of months ago, 44 year old Affleck had been lined up to write the script, direct the film and star in The Batman, but those first two responsibilities are now out of his hands. Before then, he had expressed some reservations about taking on such a high-pressure role on one of the biggest franchises around.

“It’s not a movie to make just to make it,” Affleck told the L.A. Times in December. “Because you’ll just get destroyed if it’s not great. The bar is so high.”

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