The recent filming of the Arrowverse's crossover event "Elseworlds" has caused quite the stir. We already know it'll feature Tyler Hoechlin's Superman in the famous black suit and the introduction of Ruby Rose's Batwoman. Additionally, with one of the locations being Arkham Asylum, it's confirmed that Gotham City is at least one classic DC setting for the three-part event.
Of course, everyone would love to see Gotham's most famous vigilante debut in the Arrowverse – and many thought it might happen when Jensen Ackles made an unexpected appearance on set. Ackles has long been many fans' dream casting if the Caped Crusader ever made his way to The CW, so the idea that he might play Batman was just too much for fans to ignore.
However, Stephen Amell quickly shot down the rumor before it spiraled out of control. "Let me squash this rumor right now," he tweeted. "[Jensen Ackles] was on set tonight because he's Grant Gustin's #2 fan (I'm #1) and not because he's playing the Batman."
It's unfortunate, though, because this casting would've been exceptional.
Ackles has a long, storied history with superhero projects. He auditioned for Clark Kent on Smallville, but he ended up playing Jason Teague when the lead role went to Tom Welling. Years later, when Chris Evans was cast as Captain America, Ackles was Marvel Studios' second choice for the part of Steve Rogers.
It was his portrayal of Jason Todd/Red Hood in the acclaimed animated film Batman: Under the Red Hood, however, that really cemented his legend among DC fans. His performance was so revered, it's resulted in his name being mentioned every time there's talk of the Red Hood appearing in a live-action movie.
In 2013, Ackles set tongues wagging when he appeared at Comic-Con International wearing a Batman shirt. At that stage, Ben Affleck hadn't been cast as the Dark Knight yet, and fans quickly speculated that Ackles was campaigning for the part. Speaking about the role, he said, "Any guy in his right mind would die to play Batman. It would be a dream come true."
It makes you wonder why Warner Bros. hasn't explored the opportunity yet, especially if the actor would jump at the opportunity. Ackles has strong ties to The CW, having appeared in Supernatural for 14 seasons now, and Warner Bros. and DC know what he's capable of due to Batman: Under the Red Hood. The biggest factor, though, is that his casting would be warmly received by most of the fanbase, considering his pedigree in comic book properties and the fact that he isn't that much of a divisive actor. Everyone seems to like Ackles, which is a rarity in the modern Internet age.
Sadly, as much as we wish for it to happen, this casting might prove difficult due to other reasons.
The CW maintains it doesn't have the rights to include Batman in its shows – yet it keeps teasing us with mentions of the hero, and the addition of his cousin Batwoman to the ever-growing universe. It begs the question: Can't something be worked out like it was for Superman to appear on Supergirl?
In December 2017 Arrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim said the following of Batman in the Arrowverse: "I love a good Easter egg and I love doing the occasional name drop. You know, we name-dropped Hal Jordan at the beginning of Season 3, but it's really just fun for us. I think in the Arrowverse we have our own Justice League, and the Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Batman… These are all characters that are either spoken for on the movie side and/or other shows. There's a Bruce Wayne on Gotham."
Ah-ha, but there soon won't be a Bruce Wayne on Gotham, as the series comes to an end next year. Does this mean we could see Batman in the Arrowverse? If so, The CW might have the perfect Caped Crusader on a familiar, neighboring set. We do know that the network likes to work with actors it knows and has worked with before, plus, Supernatural's ratings have dipped and it can't go on forever. And even if the long-running series isn't canceled, there's no reason Ackles couldn't;t shoot a few guest spots here and there.
The bottom line is, if the adults can get into a room and agree about featuring Superman in a TV series, they should be able to do the same for Batman. So, will someone please get Ackles on the phone, already?