Last June, the internet almost melted when it was reported that Michael Keaton was in talks to reprise the role of Batman in Andy Muschietti’s The Flash. A fan-favorite Dark Knight, returning 30 years after his last outing, to team up with the modern Flash. What used to be just fan-fiction was becoming reality.
Not so fast, however, as no official announcement was ever made. In a recent conversation with Deadline, Keaton expressed some concern about, not only his busy schedule, but the ongoing COVID pandemic.
Now, this isn’t Keaton turning the role down, this is more him speaking his thought process at the moment.
I’m needing a minute to think about it because I’m so fortunate and blessed, I got so much going on now. I’m really into work right now. I don’t know why, but I am, and so, yeah, I mean, you know, to tell you the truth, somewhere on my iPad is an iteration of the whole Flash thing that I haven’t had time yet. I called them and said, I have to be honest with you. I can’t look at anything right now. I’m so deep into this thing I’m doing. Also, I’m prepping a thing I’m producing and getting ready to do down the road in the fall that I’ll be in, and I feel responsible to that. So, yeah, there is that. I’m not being cute or coy. If I talked about it, I’ll be just bullshitting you. I don’t really know. I have to look at the last draft. To be honest with you, you know what worries me more than anything about this stuff?
Michael Keaton COVID Concern
Spoiler alert, his biggest worry is COVID. The ongoing global pandemic that recently “celebrated” its one year anniversary. I’m unaware of any health issues Keaton might have, but being 69 years old, he’d certainly be considered higher risk should he get it.
It’s COVID. I’m more concerned. I keep my eye more on the COVID situation in the UK than anything. That will determine everything, and so that’s why I’m living outside the city here on 17 acres, staying away from everybody, because the COVID thing has got me really concerned. So, that’s my first thing about all projects. I look at it and go, is this thing going to kill me, literally? And you know, if it doesn’t, then we talk.
Given The Batman’s tough track record, filming in the UK, Keaton certainly has the right to be concerned. The upcoming Matt Reeves film was delayed twice due to positive COVID tests, one of which being attributed to Robert Pattinson himself.
It just goes to show no matter how safe you make the production, one slip up is all it takes. So Keaton is well within his rights to decline working on The Flash, if he feels it isn’t safe for him.
Hopefully, with the COVID vaccine becoming available, and studios being more used to filming under COVID restrictions, they can make it work out. It would be great to see Michael Keaton in the cape and cowl again.
The Flash is currently slated for a June 3, 2022 release date. Which means, hopefully, filming will be beginning soon.
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Source: Empire Online