5 Battiest Directors for The Batman

With Ben Affleck officially announcing that he cannot handle the cape and the director’s chair at once, the hunt is on for a new helmer, and we have 5 excellent, and yes, bat-shit-crazy ideas.

1. Matthew Vaughn
Unless Chris Nolan wants to come back to the franchise, the British director Matthew Vaughn is most likely the best choice on the planet. He’s done great drama with Layer Cake, awesome action sequences with Kingsman, and he has a solid comic book track record with 3 amazing adaptations to his name. Also, he could be available just as soon as he finishes Kingsman: The Golden Circle which is about to hit cinemas in October.

But, since we are making a list, here are a few other choice alternatives.

2. Chan-wook Park
The Korean director is famous for his dark revenge thriller Oldboy and its amazing hammer fight in which the protagonist gets to punch out some 25 guys in a dimly-lit corridor. South Korean cinema is home to some of the most visually impressive and thematically twisted films of the past decade or so, and Park is one of its most prominent figures. Although he seems to prefer making dark thrillers, he has experience in several genres, including sci-fi, horror and romantic comedy. He has also made a stunning American debut with the dysfunctional family drama Stoker, proving that the language barrier is not an issue.

Should Park be unavailable, there is a slew of other accomplished Korean directors which The Batman’s producers should consider, including Jun-ho Bong who made The Host and Snowpiercer, and the acclaimed animation director Sang-ho Yeon who made an impressive live-action debut last year with Train to Busan.

3. Stephen Chow
The Bruce Lee fanboy who grew up to become an even bigger onscreen martial artist than his hero is a Chinese powerhouse. He writes, directs and stars in his films, and has been known to write music for them and choreograph the action sequences. He rose to prominence in the early aughts with Shaolin Soccer and Kung Fu Hustle which were massive hits in China and arthouse sensations across the globe.

He already attempted a Hollywood career with The Green Hornet which he was set to co-write, co-star and direct, but then left due to creative differences with the film’s star and producer Seth Rogen.

It’s a fair guess that they have different work ethics.

Besides jaw-dropping action Chow has something more he can bring to The Batman: heart and laughter. In spite of all the fights and the spectacle Chow’s films are first and foremost comedies about a guy making a difference, with the help of his friends. And, well, Batman could use a bit of that.

4. Susanne Bier
Unless she has already signed on for the next James Bond film, Susanne Bier could be the one to bring class and sensibility to The Batman. The Night Manager is proof that she can do drama and action and the 3 Golden Globes the series received show that she can get a lot out of her actors. As Batman is the world’s greatest detective, making the film more like a proper spy thriller could really set it apart in an overcrowded genre.

Like most Scandinavian directors Bier has a ton of experience in drama, but she has also proven her merit in romance, comedy and war films. Plus, out of the whole list, she is the only one with an Academy Award, as her film In a Better World took the foreign language Oscar for 2010.

Should Susanne Bier not be available, there are a few other female directors who would be great for the job, starting with Lexi Alexander who has done the last Punisher film and an impressive Supergirl episode, Karyn Kusama of Aeon Flux and The Invitation fame or why not go all out and just get Kathryn Bigelow, as she appears to have an opening in her schedule following the August release of her latest drama. Certainly, the director of Point Break, Strange Days and The Hurt Locker could bring some fresh action and a strong political message to The Batman.

5. Jim Jarmusch
Definitely the most bat-shit crazy entry on this list, but if Warners’ wants to go for the obvious choice, they should just pick Vaughn and be done with it. Jarmusch may be currently celebrated for his laidback poetic film Paterson, but in the past he has made films with impressive action scenes and plenty of intrigue. Take his samurai meets mafia film Ghost Dog from 1999 in which he gets Forrest Whittaker to bust some awesome martial arts moves.
Then there is Roberto Benigni’s crazy driving in Night on Earth and the insane, albeit slow western gunfights of Dead Man.

True, Jarmusch’s Batman would be a strange beast, and one moving at a noticeably slower pace than what action film fans expect from the Dark Knight, but it would out-weird both, Tim Burton’s and Joel Schumacher’s versions and finally prove the Joker’s saying that Whatever doesn’t kill you, simply makes you … stranger. And Batfleck quitting the director’s chair is not something that can kill The Batman.

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