Originally Posted by metaphysician
There is a much, much simpler explanation for why Elba would be a bad pick: because a black Batman means a black Bruce Wayne. Which is, itself, not a problem. . . except that the Waynes have been the Princes of Gotham for generations. It stretches credibility well past the breaking point to have a black family as the pinnacle of society in mid 1800s faux-New York/Chicago.
Which is no disrespect for Idris Elba, he's one of those actors where if he wants to play a role, unless the ethnicity would literally be unworkable, rewrite the race of the character to fit the actor. Batman just isn't one of those where you can really do that.
I think a black Bruce Wayne could work for a re-imagined version of the character. In that sense , its not unworkable. All the stuff from the 1800's wouldn't have to be incorporated into a film because it would be its own version, not Nolan's or a comic book so the generational arguement isn't enough to make the concept in unworkable.
There are rich black families , and for all we know they could be new money instead of old money, just for the sake of arguement. Even if it wasn't you would have to bring it up because that's stuff that basically only die hard fans really know or care about anyway, and the GA isn't gonna ask questions about the Wayne family tree.
As for Elba as Batman in a re-imagined version of the character, I'm not so sure.
Now whether it should
be done is in the eye of the beholder .