Anticipation surrounding the rumoured announcement regarding the next Batman film was met with some surprise midway through last week, as Ben Affleck confirmed his intention to step down from the role as The Caped Crusader.
Past failures from DC have made it less of a shock, with all of Suicide Squad, Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice, and Justice League failing at the box office. The only saving graces were Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and arguably Man Of Steel, but with Batman being the consistent failing in the current DC Cinematic Universe, Warner Brothers clearly were in need of a change, as they're falling far behind the thunderous efforts of Marvel.
Best known for directing Cloverfield, Let Me In (the English-language remake of Let The Right One In), Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and War for the Planet of the Apes, Matt Reeves was confirmed as the director of 'The Batman' in 2017, but with the only change now being that Ben Affleck will no longer play The Dark Knight.
Confirmation came from Ben Affleck's twitter account, where he showed support to Matt Reeves' film during a message that confirmed his exit from the project.
Favourites to replace Ben Affleck as Batman
From the tweet, Ben Affleck also confirmed that the film is set for release in Summer 2021, but with no indication over who will take his place. A handful of bookmakers have provided their own next Batman odds, with SkyBet offering a fair assessment of several potential candidates.
Jake Gyllenhaal at 3/1
With past links to a vast array of different hotly-contested superhero roles, Jake Gyllenhaal finally gave in and agreed to play the part of Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far From Home this summer. It's the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming, which in it self was the second reboot of the theatrical version of Spider-Man, but it could be the start of a new career in superhero films if Gyllenhaal chooses to play a villain with Marvel and a hero with DC.
It's unclear whether he would be restricted with his ability to play a Marvel and DC character at the same time but it's happened plenty of times before, and he's clearly a favourable choice as he's priced as the favourite at 3/1 with SkyBet.
Oscar Isaac at 4/1
Enjoying one of the most varied careers in Hollywood, Oscar Isaac has played all sorts of roles from every possible genre. He even tried his hand at a comic book film in 2016, playing the villain in X-Men: Apocalypse. Although the film itself had a similar fan reaction to recent DC releases, he would be a more than capable man to take on Batman after proving his flexibility in almost fifty other past roles.
Also putting his voice to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Oscar Isaac shares a link with Jake Gyllenhaal in making a type of appearance in a Spider-Man film. He currently stands as second favourite at odds of 4/1, with it looking like an intriguing concept if he were to be interested in making the switch across to DC.
Armie Hammer at 5/1
Priced as the third favourite at odds of 5/1, Armie Hammer has had a similar career to the two options ahead of him, featuring in a number of different roles. Most people will remember him for his role as The Winklevoss Twins in The Social Network, as The Lone Ranger in the film of the same title, and alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in Nocturnal Animals.
Even the mere look of Armie Hammer would be enough to envisage him dressed as Bats, and he would be capable of portraying a younger version of the character compared to the forty-six-year-old Batman presented by Ben Affleck. The only risk with Hammer would be his inexperience in a superhero role, but not many actors are given the chance of a trial run at this genre - Ryan Reynolds, Chris Evans, Samuel L Jackson, Halle Berry, and Ben Affleck aside.
Jake Gyllenhaal would be the perfect candidate for Batman, even with playing Marvel villain Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far From Home this summer.
Other names listed among next Batman odds
After these three favourites, Michael B Jordan is priced at 11/2, which would be a massive statement if he were to step into the role, not only coming in at thirty-one years of age, but also being the first ever black actor to play The World's Greatest Detective.
He has a pedigree in superhero films, joining both Gyllenhaal and Isaac as someone who previously played a superhero villain, as Michael B Jordan played Killmonger in Oscar nominated Black Panther, as well as Johnny Storm in the 2015 version of The Fantastic Four, and voicing Cyborg in an animated Justice League film back in 2013.
It comes as no surprise to see Kit Harrington at 7/1 after being such a key character in Game Of Thrones. He's previously been priced up for the next James Bond odds and is always in contention for practically every major role, so any mention of him in this category has to come with a pinch of salt.
Warner Brothers are yet to make any statement regarding the next Batman.
Further prices account for another eight actors, with Dunkirk's Fionn Whitehead at 10/1, Mad Men's Jon Hamm at 12/1, and a controversial mention of Liam Hemsworth - who is the brother of Chris Hemsworth, who plays Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe - at 16/1. Richard Madden is another Game Of Thrones star to feature, given an intriguing 20/1 price after showing a stellar performance in Bodyguard.
Both James Franco - who portrayed Harry Osborn in the Sam Raimi Spider-Man Trilogy - and Timothee Chalamet - who starred alongside Armie Hammer in Call Me By Your Name - are given odds of 33/1, which are hard to take particularly seriously based on Franco's recent comedic career and Chalamet only being twenty-three.
Former Heroes star Milo Ventimiglia is priced at 50/1, which could end up dropping based on him suiting the role and being at a good age for the role at forty-one. The largest available price is set at 66/1, which once again goes with the concept that maybe Batfleck's replacement will be someone with experience in superhero movies, Riz Ahmed being this supposedly unlikely prospect. He was villain Carlton Drake in Venom and has shown his ability playing American characters in recent years, including in Nightcrawler with Jake Gyllenhaal. Ahmed would be representing Britain in playing the role and he would make a massive statement for Warner Brothers with being of British-Pakistani heritage.