With Henry Cavill obviously returning to play Superman, discussions began about who would play Batman. Christian Bale had expressed some interest to return, but Warner Bros and DC has stated that the The Dark Knight Trilogy was separate from the new universe they were building. With Bale out, it was time to find a new Caped Crusader.
After months of speculation, Snyder announced that veteran actor Ben Affleck would taking on the role. The reaction was explosive, and not in the good way. Fans took to the internet, proclaiming their rage and hatred over this choice, some even starting petitions to get Affleck removed from the project. As an observer, I had never seen anything like it, and was dumbfounded. I wasn't thrilled with the choice, but it was out of my hands so I decide to just leave it alone. Some people however, couldn't, to this day raging about the casting choice.
Common criticisms were that Affleck wasn't imposing enough, his role as Daredevil in the disastrous film adaption of that character, and his overall disdain by the public for some of his sub-standard films. Everywhere fans were crying that he was going to "ruin" Batman, even before a single scene had been filmed. The ridiculous of this was and still is incredible to me, considering that his performances in recent films Argo and The Town being some of the best of his career.
The outrage escalated when Gal Gadot, star of the Fast and Furious franchise and former Israeli model, was cast as Wonder Woman in the heroin's first big screen appearance. Her slight frame was the biggest criticism, Wonder Woman being far more muscular in the comics, though Gadot has gone on the record to state that she had begun a rigorous training regimen and strict diet to put on the required muscle. The fact that she was also former Israeli military has also being pointed out, but some people cannot be satisfied it seems, many fans demanding that she be removed and let a "real" actress take over the role. She hadn't even put on the costume yet and they were declaring her the "Worst Wonder Woman ever." Crazy.
This outrage peaked even hire when it was announced that Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network) had been cast as classic Superman villain, Lex Luthor. To many fans and critics, Eisenberg was far too young, and far too small to play the genius megalomaniac Luthor. This is probably the only part of the fan outrage I partially agree with, but at the same time, Eisenberg is a wonderful young actor, and I reserve my full judgement until I see the movie in full.
Casting is a huge challenge in producing any movie. You have the find that one person that fits that one role, and if you chose the wrong one, it can severely damage the film. In superhero movies however, this is multiplied exponentially. Millions of people around the world know who these characters are. Be it through the comic books, TV, previous films or pop culture, they want these characters to be represented properly. And hey, I get it. I still can't get over Meagan Fox being cast as April in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, I just can't. No offence to her, but seriously can't see it (again reserve judgement until I see the movie). But the fan outcry surrounding Dawn of Justice has gotten to the ridiculous level.
These actors and actresses have been tasked with portraying characters with over seven decades of history, and before they've even shot a single scene, they are already being thrown the wolves by fans who want "their" characters to be on the big screen. To those fans I say that these characters do not belong to you. They belong to everyone, and just because you don't like the actor or actress that is getting the opportunity to play them doesn't mean they will be ruined for you
The thing I find the most ridiculous is that the movie hasn't even been released yet, and fans are already decrying it. As of this date, only two trailers have been released to the public (the second featuring some distinct elements of Mark Waid's wonderful Birthright by the way). Both trailers were met with incredibly positive response, quelling some of my own personal fears (WONDER WOMAN!). But even then, fans continue to decry that this movie will be terrible and will ruin these characters for everyone, as if it's a matter of importance for all of humanity. Sound silly and childish? Good, that means I'm not the only one.