The next Batman is Robert Pattinson. Or, at least, he’s at the top of Warner Bros.’ shortlist to fill the role. Whether this is good news, bad news, or even terrible news for Batman or Twilight fans, this is a lot to take in. And it feels like the Batfleck casting all over again (which, by the way, I supported).
Variety reported the shocking news just last night. Sources say that the casting is not yet a done deal, but negotiations are currently taking place.
Image via Hindustan Times
Pattinson is expected to play a younger Batman in DC’s cinematic universe, and, if cast, he will feature in the prequel-solo film that Matt Reeves (Planet of the Apes) is writing and directing.
While Pattinson may never completely leave behind his Twilight fame and notoriety, he admittedly has gone from vampire heartthrob to arthouse star, delivering acclaimed performances in High Life, The Lost City of Z, and Good Time. The actor—who was, of course, a decade younger and less experienced in his Twilight days—will also have a role in Christopher Nolan’s next feature, which will arrive in 2020.
Image via IMDb
Utilizing Pattinson’s onscreen romance experience wouldn’t be unwelcome either, actually. Given that the upcoming film will bring us back to the caped crusader’s early days, an adaptation of the most underrated Batman story of all time, Mask of the Phantasm, would be a great opportunity to showcase the Batman’s most genuine romance with young love interest Andrea Beaumont while also establishing his origin in the DCEU.
Image via Polygon
In fact, this would be one of the only acceptable routes for the production to take––especially since Ben Affleck will no longer be delivering a solo film with the epic, aged, and legendary Batman that won fans over. If Pattinson can deliver a follow-up performance that stuns as much as Affleck’s, then the DCEU is in good hands.
EW just shared a new promotional image for the upcoming Batwoman CW series premiering in the fall.
The new behind-the-scenes look should excite any fellow comic nerds out there, especially since the displayed Batman suit is a huge step up from the one featured in Gotham…
We see Ruby Rose returning as Kate Kane/Batwoman after debuting in last year’s CW Arrowverse crossover. Alongside her is Luke Fox, the son of fan favorite Lucius Fox.
Image via CBR
It was revealed that The Batman has been missing for three years, and Gotham has gone to hell as a result of absent oversight. Batwoman was easily the most memorable part of the most recent crossover and already proved to be a master crime-fighter. From the looks of the promo image, she’ll be receiving a notable upgrade from the Batman’s arsenal and his most trusted tech consultants––or it’s a flashback to her superhero origin, which would still be exciting to watch. Either way, there’s going to be a lot to look forward to.
Image via CBR
The full synopsis for Batwoman reads:
Kate Kane (Ruby Rose) never planned to be Gotham’s new vigilante. Three years after Batman mysteriously disappeared, Gotham is a city in despair. Without the Caped Crusader, the Gotham City Police Department was overrun and outgunned by criminal gangs. Enter Jacob Kane (Dougray Scott) and his military-grade Crows Private Security, which now protects the city with omnipresent firepower and militia. Years before, Jacob’s first wife and daughter were killed in the crossfire of Gotham crime. He sent his only surviving daughter, Kate Kane, away from Gotham for her safety. After a dishonorable discharge from military school and years of brutal survival training, Kate returns home when the Alice in Wonderland gang targets her father and his security firm, by kidnapping his best Crow officer Sophie Moore (Meagan Tandy).
Although remarried to wealthy socialite Catherine Hamilton-Kane (Elizabeth Anweis), who bankrolls the Crows, Jacob is still struggling with the family he lost, while keeping Kate –– the daughter he still has –– at a distance. But Kate is a woman who’s done asking for permission. In order to help her family and her city, she’ll have to become the one thing her father loathes –– a dark knight vigilante. With the help of her compassionate stepsister, Mary (Nicole Kang), and the crafty Luke Fox (Camrus Johnson), the son of Wayne Enterprises’ tech guru Lucius Fox, Kate Kane continues the legacy of her missing cousin, Bruce Wayne, as Batwoman. Still holding a flame for her ex-girlfriend, Sophie, Kate uses everything in her power to combat the dark machinations of the psychotic Alice (Rachel Skarsten), who’s always somewhere slipping between sane and insane. Armed with a passion for social justice and a flair for speaking her mind, Kate soars through the shadowed streets of Gotham as Batwoman. But don’t call her a hero yet. In a city desperate for a savior, she must first overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham’s symbol of hope.
Something worth noting is that the series will be in some uncharted territory. Not many Batwoman comics have dealt with Kate Kane leading the initiative to fix Gotham in Batman’s absence, let alone the entire Bat-family’s absence, so we’re likely to see very fresh material.
It’s always interesting to see a Gotham City story where The Batman takes a back seat. It’s even better when it’s done well. This is undoubtedly going to be one of those stories.
The noble knight of Game of Thrones, Jorah Mormont, is on his way to becoming the next Dark Knight of Gotham.
Deadline reports that multi-talented stage and screen actor (and GoT icon!) Iain Glen will play The Batman on Season 2 of Titans next fall.
The show’s producers provided a description of their Batman, explaining:
After decades of fighting crime as Batman, billionaire Bruce Wayne is just as driven to protect Gotham from evil as he was in his prime. Needing to reconcile his relationship with Dick Grayson, the duo hope to forge a new dynamic as Bruce tries to help his former sidekick and the Titans achieve success.
Image via DC Comics
Glen’s other popular franchise performances include Downton Abbey and Resident Evil.
It goes without saying that the man has range, and, based on what we know so far, we’re likely to see a portrayal of Bruce Wayne that is similar to the older mentor figure depicted in Batman Beyond. This will be exciting even if we won’t be seeing an accompanying Terry McGinnis, but it seems as though we may be on our way there.
Fans have also been speculating about how and when Brenton Thwaites’ Dick Grayson will receive his iconic Nightwing suit. Given the show’s direction and upcoming dynamic between Bruce and Dick, it’s likely that the caped crusader will provide the new suit as part of his peace offering.
How do you give a character who’s infamous for having no definitive origin an origin? Let’s face it: Joker has stayed around long enough because he’s fascinating, but it seems that we’re afraid that fascination might leave our collective consciousness if we know anything about him. So, again, how do you give a character who’s infamous for having no definitive origin an origin?
To answer this question, let’s starts with the basics:
Although we know now that Martin Scorsese won’t be producing the new Joker movie, his touch is still prevalent in the film. Thought interviews, official statements, and just the general feel from the trailer, we can see the cinematic inspirations bubbling to the frame.
Before we dive straight into this pool, let’s start with a little background. Specifically, let’s look at who’s producing this film. There are 3 of them.
Image Via Fandom
Not them. Well, at least, I don’t think so… but let’s give a face to these three smiles.
Third, but certainly not least, is Emma Tillinger Koskoff. You may not know her name, but you’re likely to know her work. Screenplay Daily broke the news a few years back that Koskoff joined the Martin Scorsese production company Sikelia Productions in 2003 and, in only a few short years, was promoted to Production President in 2006. She was one of the producers onThe Wolf of Wall Streetand has been a driving force in Scorsese’s films for the last ten years.
Come 2017, we got news that Scorsese himself would be the producer along with Scott Silver and Todd Philips. Todd Philips and Scott Silver are now the sole screenwriters, and Scorsese himself has left. But Emma Tillinger Koskoff stayed. Now it might seem I’m hammering this point in, and I am. With good reason.
Let’s look at what we got:
Image Via IMDB
Robert DeNiro. Yeah, he’s really all we need. He’s been in a great many of Scorsese films, but his first notable one isTaxi Driver.
Image Via IMDB
Here’s the premise, courtesy of IMDB: a mentally unstable veteran works as a nighttime taxi driver in New York City, where the perceived decadence and sleaze fuels his urge for violent action by attempting to liberate a presidential campaign worker and an underage prostitute.
Dark. Gritty. Grim. Those three words are most often used to describe this film. It’s a descent into madness as one man slowly loses himself in the crowds of the city. The film is rife with looming shots of harsh city streets, crowds bustling around and blending formlessly together, endless cigarettes being smoked down to the filter.
Image Via Daily Mail
Sounds like anyone? Maybe you’re not convinced. Maybe the fact that Thomas Wayne is apparently running for Mayor in the upcoming film doesn’t mean Joaquin Phoenix will shoot him Tim Burton style with shots reminiscent of Robert DeNirio firing at Mayor Palantine. Maybe the fact Joaquin Phoenix ends up becoming the Joker doesn’t make you think of the movie where this guy…
Image Via Mental Floss
Became this guy.
Image Via Rotten Tomatos
You talking to me? Well, I’m the only one here.
But these people were certainly reminded:
JOKER looks fucking insane!!! Has a very TAXI DRIVER vibe to it, but def a lot more twisted. You’ll see the footage we just saw tomorrow. #CinemaCon
The absence of Batman in this trailer make Joker both hero and villain. Will Joker get taken down by a cop or just get away with it all? Whatever it all is🤷♂️… There’s a reasonable argument that Phoenix is the most underrated actor today and the Taxi Driver vibe here is chilling pic.twitter.com/DgMcdTAJt4
Robert De Niro, but in The King of Comedy, which also was directed by Scorsese. Here’s the premise, again from IMDB: Rupert Pupkin is a passionate yet unsuccessful comic who craves nothing more than to be in the spotlight and to achieve this, he stalks and kidnaps his idol to take the spotlight for himself.
Let’s replace Rupert Pupkin with “Arthur Fleck” or “The Pre-Joker Joker,” and we got our Joker movie. Seriously. Just look at these images:
IMage Via Collider
Joker, head thrown back, sporting a white polka-dot suit.
Here’s a still from The King of Comedy:
Image Via Indie Wire
They wearing the same suit! Heck, the red suit Phoenix is wearing in these leaked set photos…
Image Via USA Jacket
….looks like Pupkin’s.
Image Via Public Transportation Snob
Tomorrow you’ll know I wasn’t kidding, and you’ll think I was crazy. But I figured it this way: better to be king for a night than schmuck for a lifetime!
Polygon summed it up with this: “The script was reported to have ‘ties’ to The King of Comedy; the latest poster should dispel any doubts as to that being the case.”
That should be obvious. The King of Comedy is about a man who tries to be a comedian but doesn’t yet know that he just isn’t funny. And you know what?
Image Via Zoom Comics
Batman thinks the Joker isn’t funny, but Batman isn’t in this movie, and that should scare us. When he kidnaps his comedic idol, played by Jerry Lewis, Pupkin doesn’t even have a loaded gun, but he’s absolutely terrifying.
“Tomorrow you’ll know I wasn’t kidding and you’ll all think I’m crazy,” Pupkin tells his idol, “but I figure it this way: better to be king for a night than a schmuck for a lifetime.”
Image Via Youtube
Throughout this film, we are entangled in Pupkin’s brain, and in there it’s nothing but ego. Pupkin is funny. Pupkin is the greatest, loved by all, hated by only the fools. He’s a man who deserves his shot at the big leagues, and if he doesn’t get it, he’s going to loose it. Maybe he does. The ending of the film shows Pupkin getting what he wanted: a show with an eager audience who can’t get enough, but the tone leaves us unsettled. Is this real? Or has he become completely lost in the narrative of his own construction?
Fandom summed up the film as: “a cautionary tale about the kinds of rewards and adulations we shower on celebrities. Don’t be fooled by the word “comedy” in the title. This flick isn’t there to make you laugh. It’s there to scare you.”
The only shot of De Niro in it is a quick glimpse of him on stage and, long before that happened, I couldn’t stop thinking about KING OF COMEDY. Todd Phillips is clearly thinking about it, too.
Plus, Pupkin even meets up with another stalker, Masha, who aids him in his quest to kidnap Jerry and blackmail the studio into giving Pupkin his literal 15 minutes of fame. Notable, IGN notes that Marsha, played by Sandra Bernhard, delivers “a proto-Harley Quinn performance.”
Image Via IMDB
Then there’s Robert De Niro, but in Raging Bull, which was also directed by Scorsese. Here’s the premise, again from IMDB: The life of boxer Jake LaMotta as the violence and temper that leads him to the top in the ring destroys his life outside of it.
Image Via Mubi
I hear your words, “the Joker ain’t no boxer!” Well, he can fight, but that’s not the point. The film starts off in 1964 when an aging boxer named Jake LaMotta practices a comedy routine. The film is about how this man fights and keeps fighting, ultimately realizing his life is a joke. (And what a mood.)
Image Via Robert Ebert.com
“I’m the best, I can take it more than anybody.”
It’s the internal life splattered on the silver screen, just like with Taxi Driver, just like with the next film we’re going to look at (yes, that too is Scorsese).
Image Via Digital Spy
Deadline even mentioned the film back when the movie was first announced in August of 2017:
The intention is to make a gritty and grounded hard-boiled crime film set in early-’80s Gotham City that isn’t meant to feel like a DC movie as much as one of Scorsese’s films from that era, like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull or The King Of Comedy.
Image Via Collider
In each of these three films, the character’s internal life is splattered on the screen. They are directionless people who find a direction that leads them hurdling towards a terrifying path.
“I used to think my life was a tragedy, but I now realize it’s a comedy.”
These films are character studies, which is exactly what Joaquin Phoenix has been gunning for. He told Collider:
Three or four years ago, I called my agent and said ‘Why don’t they want to take one of these characters and just make a lower budget film about it, a movie but a character study, and why not take one of the villains?’ And I thought, ‘You can’t do the Joker, because, you know, it’s just you can’t do that character, it’s just been done.’
Oh, it will be done, and I’m screaming for this movie. These films seem to serve as a template to give this classic comic book character a fresh new origin, and hopefully this film will be new but familiar territory instead of a whirlwind of a chaos.
But I’m hopeful, and you know why?
The JOKER teaser is pretty great. Joaquin never disappoints. I’m in. #cinemacon
In honor of Batman’s 80th anniversary, we’re going to celebrate The Dark Knight with the most memorable scenes from his on-screen history. I also recommend DC’s celebratory Detective Comics #1000 special if you’d like to be hardcore with me.
Image via DC Comics
Now, you might be expecting a compilation of Batman’s best ‘fight scenes.’ This is not one of those compilations (especially since there’s only one live-action Batman movie that actually has incredible fight sequences—thank you, Zack Snyder). Instead, these are the scenes that truly speak to the Batman’s character.
1. Batman Begins – Bats Frighten Me
This scene perfectly captures Bruce Wayne’s ability to turn personal trauma into strength. He found the means to turn his own fears “against those who prey on the fearful.”
2. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm – The Birth of Batman
Bruce Wayne is frequently portrayed as obsessive and in need of the crusade against crime to define who he is. This scene shows a side of Batman that is rarely seen. He has moments where it is actually possible for him to let go of ‘Batman.’ Tragically, this was not one of those moments.
3. The Dark Knight – Joker Interrogation
There was nothing that Batman could have said to prove the Joker wrong here. The Joker is the kind of artist who laughs at your bullsh*t, successfully holds a mirror up to your world, and burns it down.
4. The Batman vs. Dracula – I am Batman
‘Most Ambitious Crossover’ status achieved. Yes, DC actually had the Batman square off against Dracula, the OG literary bat-master, and he won. Take that, Bram Stoker.
5. Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker – Crying for Mommy and Daddy
The Joker always had a difficult time getting under Batman’s skin in The Animated Series. It wasn’t until Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker that he successfully sh*t all over Batman’s way of life and took away the things most precious to him: his unwillingness to compromise and his ability to protect those he cares about.
6. The Dark Knight – Sometimes People Deserve More
The Batman was always meant to be something that defies our often unjust reality. The Joker’s victory and perversion of the truth would have destroyed all of the good that Gotham’s protectors had fought for. Therefore, Batman: 1, Truth: 0.
7. Batman v Superman – Luthor Spared
Batman’s character arc was quite something in this movie. After going off the deep end and losing his way, his encounter with Superman made him remember why he became a hero and chose not to kill in the first place: he never wanted to see loved ones separated from each ever again because of murder. He even had the chance to give Lex Luthor, a person no one would miss, a well deserved death, but he didn’t.
8. The Dark Knight Rises – Rise
Bruce Wayne won. The Batman won. The battle to end crime may be never-ending, but the legend of The Batman will live forever.