Actor Joe Manganiello has blasted media "drama queens" for stirring up rumors suggesting Ben Affleck's forthcoming "The Batman" movie has been plagued with problems.
Affleck, who first took on the role of Batman for last year's "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," had initially signed on to write, direct, and star in the new blockbuster, but the Oscar winner recently decided to hand over the reins of the project to "Cloverfield" filmmaker Matt Reeves.
The news of the change in director emerged as reports suggested Affleck's script would need some heavy reworking, delaying the start of production, while some gossips even went as far as to claim the Argo star, who is still expected to reprise his role as the Caped Crusader, wanted out of the comic book franchise altogether.
Now Manganiello, who will portray villain Deathstroke in "The Batman," has addressed the fervent speculation, insisting it takes time to develop the perfect storyline, and declaring, "The creative process needs to be respected."
"It's funny how the media likes to run with, 'Oh there's trouble!' 'Oh, the script needs to be revised!' They're drama queens," he tells Robert Irvine Magazine. "There's a creative process, and everyone on the cast and crew wants to make this the best movie possible. So that's what we're gonna do.
"When we start shooting it, we'll start shooting it. It will be soon, I can say that. Here's the thing: No one wants to create that superhero movie that's polarizing to fans and critics. Rest assured, we're gonna do this thing right."
Manganiello also expressed his admiration for Affleck and his co-writer Geoff Johns, claiming he turned down other offers for comic book adaptations because they didn't feel "right".
"Knowing what they have planned for the future, I think fans are really gonna love (it)," he shares. "There were a lot of superhero and super-villain roles that came my way and my gut said those were not the right fit for me. This one was perfect. This was exactly what I was looking for."
Actor Manu Bennett has already brought Deathstroke to life in the TV adaptation of Arrow, but Magic Mike star Joe has no interest in watching it, because he wants to create his own version of the ultimate villain.
"I haven't seen it. I won't watch it," he says. "This is my character, an exciting one, and has the capacity I think, to be a great villain. And what all the great ones can do is polarize an audience. When I was a kid I always rooted for the villain. As a kid I think I would have rooted for him and I think fans will."