Joe Manganiello Courtesy of Niklas Halle'n (via Bustle)

Joe Manganiello “Can’t Say” if Deathstroke is Still in The Batman

When news of Matt Reeves stepping in to direct Batman’s impending solo hit, it garnered a lot of positive feedback from fans and critics alike. After the release of War for the Plane of the Apes, the excitement has only doubled. Thus far, Reeves has said all the right things. His passion for the Dark Knight is evident, and he has plans to craft a noir, detective-driven film where emotion will be at the fore of the tale displayed on screen. However, there appears to be one dark spot amidst all the good. Since the film’s script is being rewritten from scratch, many wonder what it means for Ben Affleck’s Deathstroke plans featuring Joe Manganiello.

During an interview with THR, the actor was asked if he knew any details regarding his status in The Batman. “I don’t. Well, I do but nothing that I can share. I know everything but I can’t say any of it,” Manganiello answered. When pressed about whether anything could be discerned from his tone of voice, Manganiello simply said, “I’m shooting for a neutral tone,” before being told it was working.

Joe Manganiello's Deathstroke
Joe Manganiello’s Deathstroke Courtesy of Ben Affleck/Warner Bros.

In addition to being unable to divulge what he knows of Deathstroke’s status, Manganiello also stated he wasn’t sure when the information would reach the public. “It’s not up to me,” he noted. “That’s a good question for Warner Bros. and DC.”

Needless to say, the hope is that Joe Manganiello’s version of Slade Wilson appears on the big screen. It’s time Batman is pitted against a foe on film that matches his combat prowess and is, tactically speaking, his intellectual equal. Of course, Tom Hardy’s Bane comes to mind in the The Dark Knight Rises, but Bale’s version of the Bat isn’t lauded for his hand-to-hand skills the way Affleck’s is being portrayed. Besides, who doesn’t want to see how Slade’s character is translated in the DCEU? His backstory would allow for infinite amounts of complexity given Matt Reeves’ intent of capturing “emotionality.”

Do you still want Deathstroke as the Batman solo’s villain, or are you hoping the new script offers other rogues a chance to shine? Share your thoughts and theories in the comments below.

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