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Ben Affleck Set to Play Batman in ‘Man of Steel’ Sequel

Affleck's longstanding relationship with Warner Bros. just got a lot stronger

Ben Affleck is set to play Batman opposite Henry Cavill in the untitled "Man of Steel" sequel that will be directed by Zack Snyder, Warner Bros. announced Thursday.

The studio has slated the film to open worldwide on July 17, 2015.

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Project brings Batman and Superman together for the first time on the big screen. “Man of Steel” stars Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne and Diane Lane are also set to return.

Snyder's "Man of Steel" re-imagined the origin of Clark Kent/Superman en route to grossing more than $650 million worldwide to date.

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“We knew we needed an extraordinary actor to take on one of DC Comics’ most enduringly popular super heroes, and Ben Affleck certainly fits that bill, and then some," said WB's president of production Greg Silverman. "His outstanding career is a testament to his talent and we know he and Zack will bring new dimension to the duality of this character.”

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Added Snyder: “Ben provides an interesting counter-balance to Henry’s Superman. He has the acting chops to create a layered portrayal of a man who is older and wiser than Clark Kent and bears the scars of a seasoned crime fighter, but retain the charm that the world sees in billionaire Bruce Wayne. I can’t wait to work with him."

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Affleck recently starred in WB's Best Picture-winning “Argo,” which he also directed and produced. In 2010, he starred in and directed WB's hit crime thriller “The Town.” Earlier in his career, Affleck starred in and co-wrote (with Matt Damon) “Good Will Hunting,” for which he won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay.

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The new superhero film is being scripted by David S. Goyer from a story he co-created with Snyder. Charles Roven and Deborah Snyder are producing, with Benjamin Melniker, Michael E. Uslan and Wesley Coller serving as executive producers.

Production is expected to begin in 2014.

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The film is based on Superman characters created by Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster, and Batman characters created by Bob Kane, published by DC Entertainment.