Beloved Bostonian Ben Affleck was on television today, but not on the usual channels — he was testifying at a Senate hearing on C-SPAN regarding foreign aid and international diplomacy. But before discussing this serious topic, he managed to drop a bit of a spoiler for the upcoming Batman film while giving a shoutout to a longtime New England senator.
Affleck started off his testimony to The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs by giving respect to the man who testified just before him, Bill Gates, as the “greatest and most important philanthropist in the history of the world.” Then he gave a shoutout to Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, who has appeared in four different Batman titles dating back to 1995’s Batman: The Animated Series. “I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge my costar in Batman,” Affleck said. “His role is marginally smaller than mine — I understand you’re quite good — good morning, sir.”
Since nothing on the IMDB page for 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice mentions Senator Leahy, it seems safe to say Affleck dropped a casting spoiler under oath at the U.S. Senate.
Senator Leahy is a noted Batman fan, even co-writing some of the comics and anthologies while in office, and appearing in the classic party scene in 2008’s The Dark Knight with Heath Ledger.
Heroic as the Caped Crusader may be, it was Affleck himself playing the role of hero today. He was testifying in a Senate open comment session regarding the success of his non-profit, the Eastern Congo Initiative, in providing assistance to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Since 2010, ECI has, according to Affleck’s testimony, used strategic public-private investments to help revitalize the fledgling coffee industry in the DRC (leading to a major purchase from Starbucks), along with other efforts aimed at stimulating the local economy and raising standards of living. Kind of puts dressing up in tights and jumping from rooftops to shame, doesn’t it?