As the most popular and lucrative genre in the industry, the studios behind the major comic book franchises have largely tended to shy away from R-rated stories. After all, as we’ve seen countless times before, these superhero blockbusters are capable of raking in billions of dollars at the box office, so you can understand why the executives wouldn’t be too keen on the idea of instantly alienating a huge section of their audience.
That being said, things have definitely changed over the last several years, and R-rated comic book movies are now a more viable and marketable commodity than ever before, as many fans grow weary of the formulaic PG-13 efforts. In some cases, they’re looking for something a little ruder and cruder, and in others a more mature and complex approach to the material.
Four of the six highest-grossing R-rated movies in history are comic book adaptations, in fact, and they’ve all been released in the last four years. Out of those four, Deadpool‘s two outings scored over $780 million each, Logan quickly gained a reputation as one of the genre’s best ever and Joker earned over a billion dollars on its way to awards season success.
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One thing a lot of fans have always wanted to see, of course, is an R-rated Batman movie, and following the debut of the first trailer for Matt Reeves’ upcoming reboot, a lot of them seem to think that it might be happening.
I can definitely see this Batman film being rated R. pic.twitter.com/o37965NZTo
— Walt (@UberKryptonian) August 22, 2020
Rated R Batman please??? https://t.co/cxNe4wetke
— It's Blagden! (@J_Blagden) August 23, 2020
Bro if The Batman ends up being rated R I’m gonna freak tf out
— The Magnum Zombie (@MysticFook) August 23, 2020
Pretty sure based on that last clip Pattinsons Batman will be rated R.
— rager. (@louiethekingjr) August 23, 2020
The Batman looks legit, I pray that it’s rated R tho 🤞🏾
— no cards💫 (@cashonllyy) August 23, 2020
Sorry to the kids but The Batman better be Rated R 😭
— Corina ✨ (@corina_myers) August 23, 2020
The Matt reeves batman trailer looks so fucking good I can’t wait to watch it next year I hope it’s rated r that would make it even better pic.twitter.com/4ZFFjUjQQC
— Yohei (@GhostYohei) August 23, 2020
THIS BATMAN MOVIE BETTER BE RATED R OOOOOOOOOOOOOOO IM SO HYPE FOR DARK EDGY RPATTS BATMAN
— Clark Kent (@Claire_Kaede) August 23, 2020
Year 2 Batman, yes no more origin stories. Please make this Rated R. https://t.co/I8qNf8kqsE
— CROD (@CROD_27) August 23, 2020
— Naughty__Tae (@TaeNaughty) August 23, 2020
Not only does the trailer end with Robert Pattinson beating a random goon to within an inch of his life, but the type of story that Reeves is planning on telling would definitely lend itself to an R-rating. However, that being said, the studio most likely won’t make a decision on The Batman‘s rating until a rough cut has been put together. After the recent success of Joker, though, the possibility certainly can’t be ruled out.