We’re just as excited about The Batman as most people, but if there’s one thing that makes us nervous, it’s how actor Robert Pattinson will handle the Dark Knight’s legendary gravelly timbre. He’s now addressing how he came to approach the character’s voice, including that it took “a lot of trial and error.”
Christian Bale’s take on the character gave us the most unintentionally hilarious moments from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, which gives us pause. Bale’s billionaire Bruce Wayne had a knack for goofily scream-whispering whenever he dons the cowl.
Zack Snyder intelligently worked around the problem of Bruce Wayne having to disguise his voice while out and about as the masked vigilante. The Ben Affleck version of the character used a badass-sounding voice modulator that took the actor’s voice down an octave or two in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League.
There is no vocal manipulator for Pattinson’s Dark Knight, from what was apparent in the trailers for The Batman, so that means it is once again up to the thespian himself to come up with how the pointy-eared detective sounds.
Pattinson went into detail about the arduous process of honing in on the voice, saying he had “a lot of times to think about it.”
He credits being able to take his time to experiment in part due to being cast many months before the film began shooting, he said at a recent press roundtable panel (via Collider).
“I think I was cast about seven or eight months before we started shooting, and so I was experimenting with a lot of different things. I think the first two or three weeks, we were kind of doing a variety of different voices, because there’s only a couple of lines in the first few scenes we shot. Me and [The Batman director Matt Reeves] just sort of settled on something,” Pattinson said.
The Good Time actor explained that he started out doing a “progression from other Bat voices,” becoming more comfortable as he went along.
“It’s weird, it just suddenly starts to feel right. It seems to be, the more you embody the suit, the more you embody the character, it just started to come out quite organically,” Pattinson said.
The actor said he imagines that’s how it works with the Bruce Wayne character, too, that he doesn’t merely think of it as “putting on a voice,” but occurs naturally.
“He puts on the suit, and then the voice just starts happening for him as a person as well,” he elaborated.
Reeves, who was at that same press roundtable, praised Pattinson’s vocal performance, calling the actor “amazing” at taking notes about how to improve it.
“He went through this process of searching for where it felt like that voice should sit. One of the things that I was asking Rob about, he has an incredible ear for mimicry and accents. He can pick up anyone’s accent. There’s no dialect coach, this doesn’t happen, that’s just who he is. He’s an incredible person,” the director said.
We’ll have to see how well Pattinson handles the notoriously throat-rattling tone of the Caped Crusader when The Batman hits theaters March 4.