Hey Dark Knight Rises fans, got some free time and want an in-depth look into Christopher Nolan‘s final installment of his epic Caped Crusader trilogy? If you’re nodding your head yes, then today is your lucky day. Comic Book Movie has just released 49 pages worth of production notes revealing everything from set design to character analysis.
Below is just a taste of the topics included:
BANE VS. BATMAN –
Although Bale was embarking on his third outing as Batman, he had to demonstrate more of a physical arc in “The Dark Knight Rises,” as Bruce had not been the Caped Crusader for so many years. In the first two films, Bale employed a mixed martial arts discipline called Keysi, but that would have to be modified, reflecting his current condition and in response to the style of his opponent. Stunt coordinator Tom Struthers says, “We didn’t drop Keysi, but we evolved it to another level to deal with the brutality of Bane.”
When Batman and Bane do battle, “it is just a great piece of cinema,” Roven states. “It is the irresistible force meeting the immovable object, and it’s awesome to watch.” “It required very intense preparation,” the director continues. “And when it came time to shoot, Christian and Tom worked extremely well together. It was frighteningly real, and quite intimidating to see these iconic, larger-than-life characters really go at it. There are plenty of other large-scale action scenes in the film, but that face-to-face confrontation between these two adversaries was something I really felt was the centerpiece of the film.”
GORDON & JOHN BLAKE DYNAMIC –
“It’s a secret that’s eaten away at him for years,” confirms Gary Oldman. “Crime is at an all-time low in Gotham, but Gordon knows that it’s tainted. Now he’s ready to come clean, but there doesn’t seem to be a right time or place, and he also questions if the city is ready for the truth. Then, because of Bane, he’s in the field again. I think he’s like a soldier who likes to be on the front lines, getting his hands dirty. He’s probably been doing a lot of paper pushing in the intervening years and that has dampened his spirits. Now you really feel like the old Gordon is back.”
Gordon finds a new protégé in policeman John Blake, whose devotion to the job impresses his boss. Emma Thomas says, “Gordon definitely sees something of himself as a young cop in John Blake. Everyone else seems to have lost focus because things have been so good, but Blake is the first to realize that something’s up, and Gordon recognizes those instincts by promoting him and putting him on his team.” Describing his role, Joseph Gordon-Levitt says, “John Blake is the kind of guy who probably always wanted to be a cop and dedicates himself to being excellent at his job. He is someone who believes in what he does and I admire that in anybody. In the midst of a lot of cynicism, he remains proud to be a police officer.” Nolan comments, “Commissioner Gordon and Bruce Wayne have become somewhat jaded, so we wanted to contrast that with a younger, more idealistic individual who, in a way, represents where they’ve come from. Joe really captured the strength and courage of a man who refuses to back down, regardless of the odds.”
Initially, however, it is not Bane who draws Bruce Wayne out of Wayne Manor; it is an intriguing encounter with a particularly skilled thief named Selina Kyle—better known in the Batman canon as Catwoman. Nolan says, “We felt very strongly that we should have Catwoman in this film, but we always look for an organic way of grounding the characters in our world. Selina is a cat burglar, a grifter, a classic movie femme fatale, really. That was my way in, and we drew the iconic figure of Catwoman from that.” The only member of the main cast who counts this film as her first collaboration with Nolan, Anne Hathaway admits, “It’s hard to reveal anything about Selina Kyle because she is intensely private and very mysterious. She has her own code of ethics, which sometimes involves doing things that other people might consider questionable.”Screenwriter Jonathan Nolan says, “Something about her morally ambiguous philosophy finally gives Batman someone he can relate to. In a weird way, she’s the yin to his yang. The dynamic between them is so fresh—the playful way she kind of pokes fun at him—it sparks a connection between them and takes some of the somberness away from his character.”
At this point, we’ve seen plenty of TV spots, trailers, and interviews which have offered insight into Nolan’s world, but these production notes expand drastically upon information discussed daily amongst fans.
Film enthusiasts will also enjoy all the cinematic details such as Nolan’s commentary on filming with IMAX cameras or listening to Oscar-winning Costume Designer Lindy Hemming explain the creation of Catwoman’s sleek suite, offering a true behind the scenes experience.
Leading up to The Dark Knight Rises‘ July 20th release date, these production notes just give us one more reason to be overly excited for Batman’s last hoorah with Nolan.
What information did you guys find the most intriguing while reading the notes? Find anything surprising? Let us know in the comments!