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As Matt Reeves takes ‘The Batman’ in a new direction, Ben Affleck is out of the role for good

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Ben Affleck
EMMA MCINTYRE/GETTY IMAGES

After several very long months of rumors, speculation, and conflicting reports questioning whether or not Ben Affleck will reprise his role as Batman for the Caped Crusader’s long-awaited standalone movie, it seems as though the actor is officially stepping away from the role for good.

Affleck, who signed a deal to play the Dark Knight in multiple DC Extended Universe movies in the summer of 2013, will no longer be starring in The Batman because the movie will reportedly be focusing on a much younger version of Bruce Wayne, sources tell Deadline.

The Batman, which Warner Bros. announced today will hit theaters on June 25, 2021, was originally supposed to be co-written and directed by Affleck, but, in light of pre-production issues, he eventually decided to exit the director’s chair and stay on as the film’s star and producer.

“There are certain characters who hold a special place in the hearts of millions,” Affleck said in a statement at the time. “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,” adding that he remains “extremely committed to this project, and look forward to bringing this to life for fans around the world.”

Shortly thereafter, Warner Bros. opted to hire War for the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves to replace Affleck, and he promptly began reshaping Affleck’s original vision for the film with a brand new draft of the script, which Reeves recently told THR is still being worked on.

“It’s very much a point of view-driven, noir Batman tale. It’s told very squarely on his shoulders, and I hope it’s going to be a story that will be thrilling but also emotional,” Reeves said.

Affleck seemingly confirmed Deadline’s report on Twitter earlier this evening, writing that he is excited for The Batman to come out in the summer of 2021 and to see Reeves’ vision for the film “come to life.”

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An eerie new trailer for ‘The Lighthouse’ is here to send you into a world of nautical madness

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The Lighthouse Directors' Fortnight
A24

One simple question arises in the latest trailer for Robert Eggers’ new film The Lighthouse, the “hypnotic and hallucinatory tale” starring Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe as two lighthouse keepers driving each other mad, and, quite frankly, it’s a pretty good one: “what?”

That one simple question pretty much sums up my feelings about The Lighthouse, which seems to be appealing to my very particular brand of weird with all these peculiar trailers where Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe go at each other’s throats and talk about spilling beans and shit.

Needless to say, all of the raves The Lighthouse has received over the past few months following its debuts at festivals like Cannes and, most recently, TIFF have also piqued my interest — right now the film boasts an impressive 94% on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 70 reviews.

I suppose we’ll find out what all the buzz is about when The Lighthouse hits theaters October 18.

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‘Joker’ just won the Golden Lion award at the 2019 Venice Film Festival, because of course it did

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Joker Venice Film Festival awards
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In its continuing effort to be the most bonkers fucking film festival on the planet, the Venice Film Festival jury has just selected Todd Phillips’ Taxi Driver/King of Comedy riff Joker as the recipient of this year’s Golden Lion award, while convicted rapist Roman Polanski received the second-place Grand Jury Prize for An Officer and a Spy.

Haifaa Al-Mansour and Shannon Murphy, the only two women directors who were selected to compete at Venice this year, both went home empty-handed, though Murphy’s Babyteeth star Toby Wallace did pick up the festival’s Young Actor award.

The complete list of 2019 Venice Film Festival winners is as follows:

Golden Lion
Joker; dir: Todd Phillips

Grand Jury Prize
An Officer And A Spy: dir: Roman Polanski

Silver Lion, Best Director
Roy Andersson; About Endlessness

Volpi Cup, Best Actress
Ariane Ascaride; Gloria Mundi

Volpi Cup, Best Actor
Luca Marinelli, Martin Eden

Best Screenplay
Yonfan; No. 7 Cherry Lane

Special Jury Prize
La Mafia Non E Più Quello Di Una Volta; dir: Franco Moresco

Marcello Mastroianni Award for for Best New Young Actor or Actress
Toby Wallace, Babyteeth

HORIZONS
Best Film
Atlantis; dir: Valentyn Vasyanovych

Best Director
Theo Court; Blanco En Blanco

Special Jury Prize
Verdict; dir: Raymund Ribay Guttierez

Best Actress
Marta Nieto; Madre

Best Actor
Sami Bouajila; A Son

Best Screenplay
Jessica Palud, Revenir

Best Short Film
Darling; dir: Saim Sadiq

LION OF THE FUTURE — LUIGI DE LAURENTIIS VENICE AWARD FOR A DEBUT FILM
You Will Die At 20; dir: Amjad Abu Alala

VENICE VIRTUAL REALITY
Best VR
The Key; dir: Céline Tricart

Best VR Experience
A Linha; dir: Ricardo Laganaro

Best VR Story
Daughters Of Chibok; dir: Joel Kachi Benson

VENICE CLASSICS
Best Documentary on Cinema
Babenco; dir: Barbara Paz

Best Restoration
Ecstasy; Gustav Machaty

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Deck the halls with…bloody murder? The trailer for Blumhouse’s remake of ‘Black Christmas’ is here

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Black Christmas
UNIVERSAL PICTURES

We were pretty jazzed to hear earlier this year that Blumhouse had begun production on a remake of Bob Clark’s 1974 slasher classic Black Christmas and now, just a few months later, we’re pleased to inform you that we have an official trailer for the film to accompany that incredible one-sheet they dropped a few months back.

Imogen Poots stars here as Riley Stone, leader of the Mu Kappa Epsilon sisters, who are preparing to throw a Christmas party as Hawthorne College quiets down for winter break. However, it isn’t long before one of them disappears at the hands of a black-masked stalker, who begins killing off sorority sisters around the campus one by one.

With the body count at Hawthorne rising, Riley and the Mu Kappa Epsilon sisters begin questioning whether they can trust any of the men in their lives, including their own boyfriends, crushes, and professors. “Whoever the killer is, he’s about to discover that this generation’s young women aren’t about to be anybody’s victims,” the film’s synopsis reads.

As excellent as director Sophia Takal’s update on Black Christmas looks, the trailer does seem to reveal quite a few different plot developments and twists, so if you’re sensitive to spoilers, it’s probably best to avoid the trailer for now so you don’t unintentionally ruin anything for yourself.

Black Christmas hits theaters on Friday, December 13, so mark your calendars accordingly, folks.

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