Ben Affleck has taken a lot of abuse since it was announced that he’d be playing Batman in the sequel to Man of Steel, with Henry Cavill starring as Superman. I’ve never consider Ben Affleck to be as talented an actor as his old partner Matt Damon. His choice of films usually isn’t the greatest either. In a tux I don’t think it’d be hard not to see him as a rich playboy, although contrasting that with the gritty Batman is a bit tough for me to picture. Some people have mentioned the Jersey accent might ruin it, but of course that’s what speech and acting coaches are for. If he plays the character well the accent might not even be noticed. It may even add a nice dimension to the character.
I’m not really sold on the idea of Affleck playing Batman but I also believe in giving people a chance. I think he does have a tough act to follow with how well Christian Bale played the role. I’d give him a chance though just because of who Ben Affleck is as a person.
Regardless of how great or terrible you may think Ben Affleck is as an actor, he’s a loyal person. It’s one thing I’ve always admired about Him, Matt Damon, and Kevin Smith. What they did starting off is something very rare among most artists. I’ve experienced it, and I’ve seen several posts in the last few weeks with others making the same observations. Whether it’s acting, writing, photography, or anything else in those creative fields, a lot of people are terrible about understanding the idea of working together to pull each other up.
What Ben Affleck, Damon, and Smith did was use their own success to help one another. When Smith got in with Miramax for his films, he used his pull with them to help Ben Affleck and Matt Damon get Good Will Hunting done. While Matt and Ben had done films before then, Good Will Hunting really helped in putting them on the map and launching their careers. They didn’t forget about Smith when their careers took off. Instead, they still took time out of their own schedules to appear in Smith’s films. In Hollywood having those big names attached to your film helps in getting investors and getting an audience in theatres. This went on for several years. They used each others success to help each other out. I’m sure if one of them needed the help today, they’d be there again with a helping hand and opening doors for one another.
For most of us working to break into the creative industry we see the opposite at lower levels. I’ve shared the work of photographers, musicians, filmmakers, etc. even when their work isn’t exactly my cup of tea. I know how hard it is to break in, and how much having people do that helps in getting exposure. Even if their work isn’t something I normally enjoy, I know there’s an audience that will enjoy it. If I can help in bringing them that audience and giving them that opportunity then I’m happy to do it, or at least I was.
Helping each other is a two-way street. I’ve noticed most of those I know, even the ones I consider nice people, aren’t too big on returning the favor. In most cases they never do. I remember going through that several years ago with theatre classes. Myself and one or two others would share every audition we heard about, even if those we were sharing with would be competing against us for the roles. It was several months later when we found out that while we were trying to help all of us as a group, most of the group was taking all the information they could but sharing nothing in return.
What Ben Affleck, Damon, and Smith did in helping each other is rare. When you find people who believe in helping their fellow artists out, even at the cost of losing out on opportunities themselves, those are the ones you want to surround yourself with. Those are the ones we should shower with opportunity. The reason is loyalty. It’ll give everyone a chance to learn and grow as opportunities are shared back and forth. You know that whatever you work on together, they’ll do their best to help promote it as much as you will. You also know that they’ll likely be sharing the work you do even when they aren’t a part of it. If you’re any kind of decent person you’ll do the same in return. As I’ve experienced, there are very few in the creative industry who think in that way. I’ve seen several other creative types, who often share the work of others, mention experiencing the same in having the favor returned.
That’s the reason I think Ben Affleck should be given a chance as Batman. People that exhibit those qualities of helping fellow artists will do everything in their power to help make it a success. It doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily succeed. What it does mean though is that you’ll get 110% of their energy and effort. I think Ben Affleck has shown himself to be that type of person. I also think a lot of up and coming artists could learn from Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, and Kevin Smith, even if that’s the only quality they take away from them. If only we had more Afflecks, Damons, and Smiths in the world.