Batman star Michael Keaton’s comeback tour in the rubber cape and cowl may have been reduced by the cancellation of Batgirl and Aquaman 2 reshoots, but he’s still part of the line-up as far as anyone can tell.

Source: Batman Returns (1992), Warner Bros. Entertainment

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As for what he will be doing, and when, Mikey Sutton of Geekosity and YouTube scooper Syl Abdul claim to have the inside track. “Still something going on with Keaton,” Abdul claimed in an update.

And that “something” circles back to an older rumor that held Keaton would play a mentor in the DCEU and eventually reprise a retired Bruce Wayne in a potential live-action Batman Beyond film.

“Sources tell me that Warner Bros. Discovery is interested in a Batman Beyond film,” Sutton reported. “Nobody’s admitting anything at this point. Still, it’s looking possible.”

He added in his report the insinuation that time travel in The Flash, a film which is a refitted Flashpoint Paradox narrative, may be used as the excuse that makes things happen.

There has been a discussion of a live Batman Beyond adaptation co-starring Keaton for a few years, at least since filmmaker and comic book writer Kevin Smith spoke the idea into existence on his podcast.

Source: Batman Beyond, Kids WB!

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That was, however, until Batgirl entered production and it seemed more likely Bruce would mentor Barbara Gordon as his replacement. YouTuber Doomcock, purveyor of shocking pop culture rumors, would later submit the corollary that Batman only coaches her briefly before he is killed in battle.

Getting permanently shelved obviously changed whatever the plans were but more was yet to be done. Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom wound up being delayed again with reshoots taking place that changed the story.

Keaton’s Batman was reportedly in the sequel at first but the reshuffling of the DC film slate divested the appearance of any causality or sense. As such, Ben Affleck was called back to fill the void and now he is the interim Dark Knight.

Source: Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021), Warner Bros. Pictures

The former still appears in The Flash but, with Batgirl out of the picture, he doesn’t know what’s next. Noteworthy is Keaton’s choice of words when asked when he’d play Batman again — he said he had no idea, not that he never would.

Maybe his future — as in a literal future time period — as Batman/Bruce Wayne is in Neo-Gotham when everything is finalized.

Source: Batman Beyond Season 3 Episode 10 “Curse of the Kobra” (2001), Warner Bros. Animation

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