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Michael Keaton is reportedly in talks to return as Batman in the DC Extended Universe. The actor is working on a deal that would bring him back to the big screens as Bruce Wayne starting with 2022’s The Flash. The news has come as a major surprise to fans, but the DCEU has actually hinted at Keaton’s return for months.

Michael Keaton Batman
Michael Keaton | Mike Windle/Getty Images for SeriousFun Children’s Network

Michael Keaton reportedly in talks to play Batman once again

Warner Bros. has not said anything official about Keaton reprising his role as Bruce Wayne, but the actor is reportedly in talks to play the caped crusader in The Flash.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ezra Miller has already committed to play the lead role in the movie, while director Andy Muschietti is set to helm the project. Miller was introduced as the character in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

If Keaton and Warner Bros. can ink a deal, the actor may play the role in several upcoming movies. Insiders claim that the studio wants Keaton to be a mentor figure in the DCEU, similar to what Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury has been in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

We do not know what future movies Keaton may appear in, but Batgirl could be one of those projects. Keaton played Bruce Wayne in Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992), both of which were directed by Tim Burton.

Robert Pattinson, meanwhile, is set to play the part of the caped crusader in Matt Reeves’ upcoming film, The Batman. It is unclear if that version of the character is connected to other projects in the DECU.

This is how DC hinted at Keaton’s return as Batman

The news of Keaton returning as the caped crusader seemingly came out of nowhere for most fans. But the studio has actually been preparing for this moment for several months, and it all started with linking the DCEU with the Arrowverse.

Over the years, the Arrowverse has enjoyed several major crossover events, connecting DC shows like Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow. In its latest crossover, producers explored the events that took place in a storyline from the comics called Crisis on Infinite Earths.

The Arrowverse revealed that all of the characters in DC’s lineup, both on television and in the DCEU, are connected — they just live in multiple versions of Earth. At one point in the crossover, Ezra Miller’s version of Barry Allen showed up alongside Grant Gustin’s rendition of the iconic speedster.

Tim Burton’s version of Gotham City, which is the same one Keaton is part of, also appeared in the crossover. Although the only character from the movies to appear was Alexander Knox (Robert Wuhl), this clearly opened the door for Keaton to return to the DCEU at some point.

What will Michael Keaton’s return look like?

In the event that Keaton comes to an agreement to reprise his role as Batman, it is unclear if he

will feature prominently in The Flash. The movie will reportedly explore the Flashpoint storyline from the comics, which mostly included Thomas Wayne as Batman.

It is possible that The Flash will take some creative liberties with the original story and feature Keaton as an old Bruce Wayne. If that happens, then Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who portrayed Thomas Wayne in Batman V Superman, will likely be left out of the story.

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Whatever happens, it is interesting that DC laid the groundwork for Keaton’s arrival several months ago. Fans will undoubtedly love to see him portray the hero once again as Burton’s movies proved to be a major hit with the audience.

Barring any future delays, The Flash is currently scheduled to premiere in theaters in 2021. DC is also expected to reveal more information about the project at the upcoming event, FanDome, which is set to happen in August.

Michael Keaton has not said anything about the rumors that he is reprising his role as Batman.