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After time sitting in development hell, DC’s The Batman is finally moving forward. Matt Reeves replaced Ben Affleck as director years ago, but it’s taken a long time for the the project to really get moving. But the Planet of The Apes director has finally begun assembling his cast and crew, with tons of talent attached to the highly anticipated blockbuster. That includes Jeffrey Wright as the new version of Commissioner James Gordon, with the director teasing this exciting bit of casting via social media.
From the first names announced or roles in The Batman, it’s clear that Matt Reeves is going for some A-List talent. Robert Pattinson’s casting as Bruce Wayne went viral, mostly because of his tenure in the Twilight franchise. But also joining him are Zoe Kravitz, Paul Dano, and Jeffrey Wright. Reeves officially confirmed Wright’s role as Batman’s ally via a quick tweet, following Wright’s own tease on social media. Check it out below.
Clearly Matt Reeves is having fun with the casting process of The Batman. Specifically, the effect each new announcement has on the rabid fandom. As such, we should probably expect more cryptic social media posts as the movie begins filming.
Matt Reeves’ tweet is a quick gif of Jeffrey Wright, with a simple hashtag: #Gordon. While news of Wright’s casting first came out a month ago, this is the first time the director has officially confirmed the Westworld actor’s role. Wright will indeed be playing Gotham City’s James Gordon, who is typically Batman’s most trusted ally from within the GCPD. It’s an inspired bit of casting, as Wright has proven himself a capable actor during his long career.
Jeffrey Wright is just the latest actor to take on the mantle of Commissioner Gordon. Because whenever there’s been a live-action Batman, there is usually a version of Gordon not far behind. During the Tim Burton/ Joel Schumacher era, he was played by Pat Hingle. Hingle was a supporting role in all the movies, interacting with each replacement of Batman as actors cycled through the role. Gary Oldman played James Gordon during Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, to great results. But the most recent actor to play the role on the big screen is Oscar winner J.K. Simmons.
J.K. Simmons had a very brief tenure as Commissioner Gordon. He had a small role in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, briefly meeting the team alongside Ben Affleck’s Batman. This was done to set up Affleck’s eventual solo movie alongside Simmons. But unfortunately, the disappointing performance of Justice League changed things, and Ben Affleck left the DCEU for good.
It should be interesting to see how much The Batman is connected to the greater DC Extended Universe, and how the movie functions in the wake of Batfleck. It’s unclear if Matt Reeves will set the movie back a few years, of it it’ll be set up in present day Gotham City. Will he simply ignore the casting change and have Jeffrey Wright and Robert Pattinson pick up where the duo of characters left off? It’s unclear, but that question will loom over The Batman until more details about the solo flick are confirmed.
It should be interesting to see how much inspiration Matt Reeves take from the Batman comics, especially as he introduces members of Bruce Wayne’s rogue gallery. You can get your hands on some of Batman’s adventures on the page here.
Luckily, Matt Reeves is moving forward with the moie, and is clearly happy to tease the fandom about The Batman on social media. As such, we should expect plenty of more exciting announcements about the long-gestating blockbuster.
The next installment in the DCEU is Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) on February 7th, 2020. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.