A new report has detailed how Robert Pattinson came to win the coveted lead role in The Batman. The era of Ben Affleck is officially over and the era of Battinson can officially begin. We learned last week that the former Twilight star had officially landed the gig after topping the studio’s wish list. But how did the former vampire and current star of indie movies such as Good Time and High Life snag arguably the most coveted gig in Hollywood? We now know how it went down.

According to a new report, Robert Pattinson had to get on a plane very shortly after his new movie The Lighthouse debuted at Cannes. At that point, reports had already been circulating that he had landed the part. However, at that time, he hadn’t just yet. He was still competing with Nicholas Hoult (Tolkien, Dark Phoenix) who was also very much in the running. Though the casting process that the two actors underwent was described as intense, it was also described as quick, far quicker than usual for the casting of a major superhero role.

Part of that has to do with the fact that writer/director Matt Reeves had actors in mind when he was penning the script. He also had a very specific age in mind, something we had heard leading up to the casting. Reeves wrote this version of the character around 30 years old in a story that will see the famed DC hero “still trying to find his footing on his way to becoming the genius detective.” It won’t be another origin story (so hopefully we won’t have to see his parents gunned down in an alley), nor will this be a version of the Caped Crusader who is already firmly in place as Gotham City’s chief protector.

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As for the tests themselves, both actors wore an undisclosed Batsuit from a previous movie and shot screen tests. They are said to have been the only contenders. The studio and Matt Reeves were both looking for very specific things, according to the report. At the end of the day, it was Robert Pattinson who won out. After deliberating, calls were made to both actors and thus, we have our star for The Batman.

Another interesting point is that Warner Bros. believed that Robert Pattinson, who Matt Reeves envisioned early on in the process, even before reaching out, was especially attractive because he hadn’t appeared in a Marvel movie of any sort. While Nicholas Hoult has been appearing as Beast in the recent X-Men movies, it’s said that, since those are ensemble movies and the actor was under heavy blue makeup and fur for much of his time on screen, they didn’t want to disqualify him. Though, Pattinson did have something of an edge since audiences wouldn’t be fighting any perception of him as a different hero or villain in a rival comic book movie universe.

One particularly interesting item of note is that it’s stated both actors had deals done and ready to go for whoever won out. So those details didn’t need to be ironed out after the fact. Both were very much ready to take up the mantle. Nicholas Hoult, as it turns out, got very close. But it’s Robert Pattinson’s job and now he’ll be getting his very own Batsuit and will begin training for the shoot, which is expected to begin in early 2020. The Batman is set to arrive in theaters on June 25, 2021. For the full story, head on over to The Hollywood Reporter.

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