The Dark Knight Rises’ Tom Hardy And Christopher Nolan Discuss Bane

Tom Hardy, who plays the hulking villain Bane in the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises, and director Christopher Nolan shared some insight on Batman’s nemesis in a recent interview with Empire Magazine. Hardy talked about the ultimate brutality of the character, and Nolan praised Bane as a villain who can challenge Batman both physically and mentally.

Hardy had choice words about his character Bane, calling him a brutal “wrecking ball.”

He’s brutal. Brutal. He’s a big dude who’s incredibly clinical, in the fact that he has a result-based and oriented fighting style. It’s not about fighting. It’s about carnage. The style is heavy-handed, heavy-footed, it’s nasty. Anything from small-joint manipulation to crushing skulls, crushing rib cages, stamping on shins and knees and necks and collarbones and snapping heads off and tearing his fists through chests, ripping out spinal columns.

He is a terrorist in mentality as well as brutal action. He’s a wrecking ball. He’s horrible. A really horrible piece of work.

The actual filming of certain scenes also sounds like they were tricky for Hardy, who mentions an overwhelming shoot where he was up against 1,000 people.

When you’re training in a rehearsal room you go, OK, I have a contact with seven people. This guy I chin, this one I slip and I punch, this one I pick up and suplex, this guy I kick in the face and this one, he stops a hammer with his head. And then I meet Batman. That’s all alright in a rehearsal room, but then you add 1,000 people that are all dressed the same as the seven you’re supposed to hit.

On love for the Batman character, and his head-to-heads with Christian Bale in full regalia, Hardy had some interesting things to say.

He looks really intimidating. There’s a three-year-old in me that’s going, ‘Oh my God that’s Batman! That’s Batman and he’s going to hit me! But I love Batman!’ Then I look in the mirror. And I hit him back. Twice as hard.

Sounds like the movie is going to pack a punch, carnage-wise, but Nolan says Bane isn’t only about the physical carnage. He’s not just the ”ultimate physical villain;” he also has an incredible brain.

With Bane, we’re looking to give Batman a challenge he hasn’t had before. With our choice of villain and with our choice of story we’re testing Batman both physically as well as mentally.

He’s a great sort of movie monster, but with an incredible brain, and that was a side of him that hadn’t been tapped before. Because the stories from the comics are very epic and very evocative — very much in the way that Bruce Wayne’s origin story is epic and evocative. We were looking to really parallel that with our choice of villain. So he is a worthy adversary.

Sounds like The Dark Knight Rises is going to be off the charts, and it better be considering the expectations and buzz. We’ve seen some leaked pics of Bane’s outfit, which has caused quite a stir among avid fans. Costume designer Lindy Hemming sheds some light on the design choices:

He was injured early in his story. He’s suffering from pain and needs gas to survive. He can’t survive the pain without the mask. The pipes from the mask go back along his jaw line and feed into the thing at his back, where there are two canisters.

The Dark Knight Rises hits theaters on July 20, 2012. Are you ready yet?