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#MaketheBatfleckMovie: The Secret History of Batman Vs. Deathstroke, Feat. The BatFeed

Updated: Jul 22, 2021

What would Ben Affleck's The Batman film have been like? The BatFeed joins us as we chat about Deathstroke's comic book history against Batman, the proposed storyline and all the cinematic and comic book influences on Affleck's "The Batman" script (including an obscure 1980s issue with a similar premise), why the project didn't take off, the insane research that Joe Manganiello did for the role of Slade Wilson, and the unmade Deathstroke projects that Manganiello developed before his return in Zack Snyder's Justice League.


0:04 Matt Herring GoFund Me Bumper Please donate what you can to our friend and fan of the podcast Matt Herring, who is battling Stage 4 colon cancer. Click here for Matt Herring's GoFundMe

1:45 Sketch: “Deathstroke Leads Dungeons and Dragons (and Dicks)” with Andrew as Deathstroke, Zack Brown as Joker, Ben as KGBeast, and Jake of the Batfeed as the Penguin

Andrew's Dungeons and Dragons loving Deathstroke is a reference to Joe Manganiello's own Dungeons & Dragons fandom.

Ben's KGBeast references being roasted alive by his own flamethrower, which is his fate in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Jake's Penguin voice is based on Tom Kenny's Penguin from The Batman.

8:19 Episode Introduction

11:07 Introduction/Interview with The BatFeed

Jake at The BatFeed is a friend and fan of the podcast who originally contacted us on Instagram under the name batmanstopmotion.

Here is Cult of the Batman's IG, who was mentioned during the episode and set up the Cult Of the Bat Challenge, which is how Jake met us:

And here is The BatFeed's first documentary on Batman 1919-1939:

You can check out the new edition of the Giant Panda King book here.

Below is the Deathstroke action figure from The Dark Knight that Ben mentions:

33:44 Deathstroke: The Comic History of the Character

The Batman vs. Deathstroke Arkham Origins trailer is below:

48:24 History of Ben Affleck’s The Batman

Here's the 2015 announcement that Ben Affleck and Geoff Johns were collaborating on the script for The Batman:

49:10 How Joe Manganiello Was Cast as Deathstroke & The Batman Character He THOUGHT Affleck Wanted Him to Play

Joe Manganiello's story about dressing up in the Batsuit to promote Batman Forever comes from the Man Vs Game twitch stream, available to watch here. This stream includes a lot of information that we discussed in the podcast, including Joe originally thinking that he was up for the role of Azrael:

And here's the BossLogic art that caught Joe's attention:

Here's the video that Ben Affleck shot of Joe in costume on the Justice League set:

The story of Affleck leaking Joe's video and turning his phone off comes from this interview:

Affleck's comments on wanting to explore the World's Greatest Detective aspect of Batman is from this interview:

“The world’s greatest detective aspect of Batman is more present in this story than it was in the last one, and will probably be expanded upon further in a Batman movie that I would do. I think all the great Batman stories are, at their heart, detective stories. That’s why they feel like noir movies in a way-- somehow feels like it could be The Maltese Falcon. But at their heart good Batman stories are, like I said, detective stories. And with detective stories, there’s a “what’s happening” element, but there’s also a, “how do I find these people and bring them together? How are we going to work together successfully?” Sort of a multilateralist."

59:02 Arkham Asylum Rumors

Robert Richardson's quote on Arkham (that we joked about for saying absolutely nothing) was the following:

“Well, he was going more into the insanity aspects. So I think you would’ve seen something a little darker than what we’ve seen in the past and more into the individual, who was inside Batman. What element may be sane and what element may actually not be sane. So he was entering into a little more of the Arkham, as you know, he’s going into where you keep everyone who was bad, everyone that shifted and Batman. And so that whole aspect was sort of… it was very fascinating to go to the darker side of Batman.”

It was quoted in several articles including these:

1:02:27 BREAK: No More Whoppers Promo, Barkbox Promo, “Beppo & Bibbo” Patreon Sketch, The BatFeed Bumper

This is a promo for another podcast in the Greenlit Podcast Network, No More Whoppers, which you can find here.

Check out our link for Barkbox here.

The Beppo & Bibbo sketch stars Beppo the Super Monkey (Andrew) and Bibbo Bibbowski (Zack) with Ben as the narrator and Metallo and Zack as Superman.

Beppo the Super Monkey (Andrew)

Bibbo Bibbowski (Zack)

This was inspired by Zack's confusion over Beppo and Bibbo's names when Ben mentioned that Bibbo defibrillated Superman after his death at the hands of Doomsday. Zack mistook Bibbo for Beppo the Super Monkey in doing the defibrillating (hence the defibrillator as a weapon in the sketch).

This sketch was featured in the beginning of our Reign of the Supermen- Villains Edition episode here. This is a Patreon exclusive episode featuring Zack's first Patreon as a co-host.

1:08:11 Deathstroke' & Batman’s Backstory

1:17:17 The Comic & Cinematic Inspirations for Ben Affleck’s “The Batman," Including The Obscure 1980s Batman Issue With a Similar Premise

Below is the trailer for the David Fincher movie The Game that Joe Manganiello cited as inspiration:

Here's the cover of the Daredevil arc Born Again that we mention:

And here's a closer look at Batman Annual No. 10 "Down to the Bone" which Ben shared as one of his favorites and has thematic ties to what Affleck and Johns wrote for the film.

1:24:37 Batgirl

Manganiello spilled the beans on Batgirl's involvement in this interview with Comic Book Nation:

1:27:57 Why Affleck Left the Project

Here's the video that Ben was referring to on Affleck's frustration about being constantly asked about The Batman by the press:

Here's the full quote from Bret Easton Ellis on what he heard about the making of The Batman:

"I was having dinner with a couple of executives who know other executives who are working on the [forthcoming] Batman movie, The Batman. And they were just telling me that there are serious problems with the script. And that the executives I was having dinner with were complaining about people who work on the Batman movie. And they just said they went to the studio and they said, ‘Look, the script is … Here’s 30 things that are wrong with it that we can fix.’ And [the executives] said, ‘We don’t care. We don’t really care. The amount of money we’re going to make globally, I mean 70 percent of our audience is not going to be seeing this in English. And it doesn’t really matter, these things that you’re bringing up about the flaws of the script.’ So I do think global concerns play a big part in how movies, and what movies, are being made, obviously."

Ben Affleck's quote about the reaction to the script comes from this interview:

"I showed somebody The Batman script. They said, 'I think the script is good. I also think you'll drink yourself to death if you go through what you just went through again.'"

The news that Chris Terrio had worked on The Batman comes from this article, which was mainly about Affleck dropping out of the director's chair:

1:36:20 The Solo Deathstroke Movie & Deathstroke Vs Deadshot Movie

The report that Slade Wilson couldn't be shown on Arrow after Season 6 came from this article:

The breakdown of Joe Manganiello's research into the role (as well as the fact that Suicide Squad 2 was originally going to be Deadshot vs. Deathstroke and the text that Manganiello got from Marv Wolfman) comes from the Man vs. Game stream that we mentioned earlier in these notes.

Here's Manganiello's quote on what the solo Deathstroke film was going to be about:

“It involved Adeline [Kane], the kids, who were going to be young, Wintergreen (who’s kind of Deathstroke’s Alfred), Talia [al Ghul]. In my script, there was an origin story for the sword and there were League of Shadows ties and things like that.”

“I worked with an Oscar-nominated writer on that treatment, and it was one of those projects that got canceled during that period. There were maybe seven different Deathstroke projects that all didn't happen over the course of four years. It’s one of those funny things in Hollywood and in life where you’ve just got to let it go.”

“The greatest warriors are the ones who walk into battle already dead or assuming that they’re going to die — they’re looking for someone who could actually kill them. There’s almost an excitement around that, like ‘Is today going to be the day?’ So there was a climatic moment in my standalone story where I wanted Slade to shave his head into this war-like Mohawk knowing that he was going off to his own death. I said to Zack, ‘I always envisioned him with a big white Mohawk,’ and he was totally down for it.”

1:56:18 Closing: Fan Comments & Social Media Promotion

We mentioned our Patreon where we dove into the Batman Vs. Deathstroke animated film Son of Batman (though it's more of a Damian vs. Deathstroke film):

Our Batman vs. Deathstroke week concludes with the main Batman vs. Deathstroke animated movie- Son of Batman. We compare the adaptation to Grant Morrison, Andy Kubert, and Jesse Delperdang’s original Batman and Son arc, discuss the controversy of Morrison’s treatment of Talia, and debate where Damian ranks among the Robins.

You can check out the episode and join our $5 Patreon here.


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ZACHARY JACKSON BROWN (who also did the thumbnail art) IG: @zacharyjacksonbrownart SUPERHOUSE MERCH: Teepublic Threadless

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