It’s going on 10 years since Warner Bros. officially scrapped plans for Justice League Mortal, yet DC superfans still like to ponder over what could have been.
Armie Hammer was undoubtedly the fulcrum of that botched project, having signed on to play the Caped Crusader back in 2007. Dogged by internal setbacks and a high-profile writers strike, production was ultimately abandoned two years later, which is all the more disheartening when you consider that Justice League Mortal would have introduced us to a “dark, deranged” Batman – one who was more akin to Christian Bale’s Dark Knight than previous incarnations.
But don’t just take our word for it; here’s Armie Hammer talking to MTV’s Happy Sad Confused podcast about what could have been:
It was pre-Christian Bale but the Christian Bale Batman had a lot more in common with it than any of the previous ones, whether it be George Clooney or Michael Keaton, which were almost campy. This was one about a guy who is severely psychologically, almost deranged. It was dark and it was really intense and this guy had major trust issues, the whole thing. It was a great concept and a really cool idea.
This is by no means the first time that Hammer has addressed Mortal; two weeks ago, the former Social Network star admitted that he’s a little relieved that he missed out on the opportunity of a lifetime – to his credit, Armie Hammer wanted to embark on a career-long pursuit of success, rather than being gifted the chance to play Batman at only 19 years of age.
I can specifically remember getting the phone call, and them being like, ‘You got the part in the movie. We didn’t know what part we were going in for. They didn’t say you were going in for Batman. It was nothing. Literally nothing. They didn’t even give you scenes from the movie. My audition scene was the Ned Beatty monologue from Network.
Other notable cast members who were initially attached to Justice League Mortal include DJ Cotrona (Superman), Megan Gale (Wonder Woman), Common (Green Lantern) and Adam Brody as The Flash.