There is a line in The Dark Knight something like: “You Either Die A Hero, Or Live Long Enough To See Yourself Become The Villain”. This is true of movie franchises, if they go on too long they tend to run out of steam and alienate the audiences, Batman and Robin is a perfect example of this. For that reason I think Christopher Nolan and Christian Bale should make one last Batman film then bow out on a high. If that where to happen what would be the next interpretation of Batman?
During research for an article about Clint Eastwood (and his retirement from acting) I came across a few references suggesting that he came close to appearing in Batman twice. First in the camp TV series of the 60’s as Harvey Dent; fortunately the program was cancelled just in time. The second time could have been more interesting, he was suggested to play the now aging Batman in a film inspired by Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns. The idea was scrapped when Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins went into production. Obviously Eastwood is now too old and potentially retired from acting so who else could play the part? I liked the idea of self confessed Batman fan David Carradine who sadly died last week so he is out of the equation as well but I did have an idea:
It has now been 20 years since Tim Burtons Batman and Michael Keaton at 57 is about the right age. Michelle Pfeiffer is also about the right age to reprise her role as Selina Kyle (no longer Catwomen). The rest of the cast is probably too old. Who would direct? Tim Burton is the obvious choice, I would also suggest to give it a suitably dark tone David Fincher or Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Realistically if a film like this were to be made it would probably be another ten years away changing the potential casting, even so it looks like great material for a new Batman when the current incarnation ends. I just hope Christopher Nolan doesn’t use the title for his as yet untitled next Batman Movie.
For those who don’t know the story a brief outline is: An aging Bruce Wayne has hung up his cape and retired from being Batman following the death of Robin. Ten years later and Gotham is overrun with crime, the streets are run by a violent gang calling themselves The Mutants. Wayne now in his fifties decides to return to crime fighting as Batman and is helped by a third incarnation of Robin, this time a young Girl. Whilst all this is going on Harvey Dent has become Two-Face again. The Joker returns after being in a coma for ten years and Commissioner Gordon Retires. Gordon’s successor Ellen Yindel is a fierce critic of Batman and issues a warrant for his arrest. Along the way Batman has showdowns with the leader of The Mutants as well as Two Face and The Joker before the surprising climax. Despite the fact that Gotham is benefiting from Batman’s presence and is experiencing less crime than other big cities the president sends Superman to deal with Batman.