Ben Affleck
Ben Affleck Reuters

Oscar winner Ben Affleck will play Batman in the upcoming Man of Steel sequel, Warner Bros announced.

The 41-year-old Argo director is replacing Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne and will be seen opposite Henry Cavill, who is starring as Superman.

"Ben provides an interesting counter-balance to Henry's Superman," director Zack Snyder said in a statement, "He has the acting chops to create a layered portrayal of a man who is older and wiser than Clark Kent and bears the scars of a seasoned crime fighter, but retain the charm that the world sees in billionaire Bruce Wayne. I can't wait to work with him."

This will be the first time that comic book superheroes Batman and Superman come together on the big screen. The film will begin production next year, with a release date of 17 July 2015.

"We knew we needed an extraordinary actor to take on one of DC Comics' most enduringly popular super heroes, and Ben Affleck certainly fits that bill, and then some," Greg Silverman, president of creative development at Warner Bros Pictures said.

"His outstanding career is a testament to his talent and we know he and Zack will bring new dimension to the duality of this character."

'Ben Affleck as Batman' has been trending on Twitter and celebrities also took to the micro-blogging website to congratulate the star of films such as Argo and Armageddon.

"You read for a part, you feel good about it, you feel confident, then they cast Ben Affleck," Richard Dreyfuss joked.

"I want to congratulate Ben affleck on winning the part of batman it was some battle but you won fair and square," Chris Rock tweeted.

Man of Steel stars Amy Adams (Lois Lane), Laurence Fishburne (Perry White) and Diane Lane (Martha Kent) will be also seen in the film.