Virus reportedly won't stop Michael Keaton from playing Batman in The Flash movie

Last month, the actor revealed that the coronavirus situation in the UK could affect whether he reprised the superhero role.

Gael Cooper
CNET editor Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." She's been a journalist since 1989, working at Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Sidewalk, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and NBC News Digital. She's Gen X in birthdate, word and deed. If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
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Gael Cooper
2 min read

I'm Batman.

Warner Bros.

Despite an interview last month that raised some doubts, actor Michael Keaton will return as the Caped Crusader in the upcoming movie The Flash, multiple sources are reporting. Keaton starred as the superhero in Tim Burton's 1989 Batman film and in the 1992 sequel, Batman Returns. Representatives for the actor and for Warner Bros. didn't respond to a request for comment, but both Entertainment Weekly and The Wrap reported they had confirmed the news.

It's both new and old news. Reports that both Keaton and Ben Affleck, who also played Batman, will both be taking on the role in The Flash were around last summer. But then in March, Keaton said that the coronavirus pandemic might keep him out of the film, which is being filmed in England.

"I keep my eye more on the COVID situation in the UK than anything," Keaton told Deadline. "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."

Entertainment Weekly reports that despite Keaton's interview, he never left The Flash.

Keaton then may stick around and pop up as Batman in other films, as Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury does in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but Affleck has said he's done with the Batman role after The Flash.

The Flash began filming on Monday, with director Andy Muschietti sharing an Instagram post to mark the occasion.

The Flash is expected to be released on Nov. 4, 2022.