Two Petitions Were Trying to Keep Ben Affleck From Playing Batman

One was deleted, but the other has more than 9,000 signatures.

By | Arts & Entertainment |
Photo via Change.org

Photo via Change.org

People really, really don’t want Ben Affleck to play Batman. Ever. Just check his Facebook page. 

When news broke that gruff-voiced British actor Christian Bale would no longer play the masked crime fighter in an unnamed film set for release in 2015, starring the Dark Knight and Superman, the Internet erupted with negative reactions.

Those reactions were caused by the director’s choice for the role—Affleck—even though Greg Silverman, President of Creative Development and Worldwide Production at Warner Bros., said he “certainly fits that bill, and then some.”

But he failed as the Daredevil, they said.

He can’t be in movies that he hasn’t directed, written, and starred in on his own, they complained.

Affleck will destroy the [Dark Knight] legacy, they wrote.

And on and on it went.

The online backlash got so intense that two petitions were even started in an attempt to convince both president Barack Obama and the powers that be at Warner Bros. studios that Affleck, despite his recent award season nods, just isn’t cut out to don a cape and protect the residents of Gotham City.

The first petition went up on the White House’s website, in the section “We The People,” where anyone can lobby complaints and try to enact changes in the nation if they garner enough support and online signatures, allowing “all Americans to ask the Obama Administration to take action on a range of important issues facing our country.”

That petition asked that Obama make it illegal to allow Affleck to play Batman, or any other superhero for that matter.

The petition said:

Screenshot via WhiteHouse.gov

Screen shot via WhiteHouse.gov

Before the petition could get a solid count of backers, however, White House officials quickly deleted it for allegedly violating the “Terms of Participation” on the special section of their website.

Still outraged, Obama’s plan to thwart a movement to get Affleck out of the bat-suit was recalibrated in the form of a second petition on Change.org.

That petition, titled “Warner Brothers: Remove Ben Affleck as Batman/Bruce Wayne in the Superman/Batman movie,” had more than 9,000 signatures, and dozens of seemingly serious complaints, as of 2:30 p.m. on Friday. “His acting skill is not even close to being believable as Bruce Wayne and he won’t do the role justice. He’s not built, nor is he intimidating enough for the role of Batman. His portrayal of Daredevil was atrocious and he’s not remotely close to an action star. Please find someone else,” the petition said.

The plea was directed at Warner Bros.’ Courtney Simmons of DC Entertainment, Paul McGuire from corporate communications, and Jack Horner who handles feature films.

With so many failed attempts to master the role of Bruce Wayne since the Batman franchise began, with the exception of Christian Bale and Michael Keaton, fans said they fear the leading role will put the quality of the films back in the depths of the bat cave. “Affleck will fail as Batman and disappoint us all,” one petitioner wrote.

Production on the film, which is a sequel to director Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel,”  is expected to begin in 2014 for a July 2015 release.

Source URL: http://www.bostonmagazine.com/arts-entertainment/blog/2013/08/23/two-petitions-started-to-try-and-keep-ben-affleck-from-playing-batman/