No upcoming movie can match the intrigue and fan hype as Christopher Nolan’s next Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises. We all knew it was coming after the massive success The Dark Knight had both critically and financially, and now with a final release date looming in the summer of 2012 the real speculation can begin. Plot questions, casting choices, villain hopefuls were on the minds of everyone who loved Nolan’s take on the Caped Crusader.
With every little detail that emerged from the internet, either true or false about the film, it provoked a reaction from the fans similar to that of feeding fresh meat to a hungry pack of wolves. Only recently has the biggest news regarding The Dark Knight Rises finally surfaced, confusing people just as much as it pleased them. Tom Hardy and Anne Hathaway have officially signed on to play the characters of Bane and Catwoman. Now this is the type of news to keep people talking up until a set photo emerges of Hathaway in costume. Let the pot stirring begin!
First off you don’t have to be Christopher Nolan to know that his third and final Batman movie was always meant to involve the Joker. Even if his role was reduced to cameo status, Heath Ledger would return again and affect the storyline. That’s obviously changed now and the rumors that Nolan will use another actor to portray the Joker or even include a CGI version of Ledger shouldn’t even be considered. Joker may be referenced or used as a back story in The Dark Knight Rises but no one would dare to attempt ruining the work Ledger did, and Nolan knows this more than anyone else.
The Joker in Nolan’s universe is locked up in a padded room inside Arkham Asylum and even off screen his presence has set the stage for Gotham and Batman in the final movie. As for Two-Face, Nolan has stated before that he is dead. As a continuing storyline The Dark Knight Rises wouldn’t make sense having him alive, after all Batman is wanted by the police for a reason.
The announcement of Bane was huge as far as villain assumptions went. Only some of the Dark Knight’s classic enemies could appear onscreen in Nolan’s movies, remember this isn’t the Joel Schumacher versions. Clayface, Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, and Killer Croc don’t fit well with the tone of realism displayed in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. Most were banking on thugs like the Penguin, the Riddler or Black Mask to make appearances because of their logical (somewhat) origins and simple (again, somewhat) appearances.
Bane was one of the front-runners as well but his massive size kept him from truly being a contender to appear in Nolan’s rational settings. Now that he has officially been announced to star in The Dark Knight Rises one has to wonder how he can work in the movie. If anyone has seen the film Bronson they’ll know that Tom Hardy can bulk up. But for the character of Bane, bulking up means………well, this……
Nolan has multiple ways to present Bane either using CGI, prosthetics, a mixture or both, or just having Hardy in incredible shape. It’s an interesting decision that will ultimately rely on what looks and works the best for a character like this in a realistic manner. Pray and hope that the Bane, who appeared in the horrific Batman and Robin, will be altered in a very drastic way.
Catwoman was a likely candidate because of the romantic void that existed for Bruce Wayne after Rachel Dawes’ death in The Dark Knight. Her character has been around for a long time in the comics and over the years her wardrobe may change slightly but in the end it usually involves tight leather. Michelle Pfeiffer did a commendable job in Batman Returns where she wasn’t overly campy. Catwoman’s existence in the Nolan universe is enticing, presenting ample opportunities to take advantage of her femme fatale features.
As for the actors themselves taking on the new roles, it doesn’t get better than this. Other then Katie Holmes in Batman Begins, Nolan’s films feature the best available talent for blockbusters since…pretty much ever. Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Gary Oldman, Heath Ledger, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Nolan knows his actors and who will work in the roles he requires for them.
Hardy is hot property after Inception, where everyone finally realized how talented he is. His ability to handle action scenes convincingly is good news as Bane is someone who likes to get his hands dirty, often. Hathaway has grown into a mature actress who has more range than any other young female in Hollywood today. It’s exciting to imagine how she’ll interpret Selina Kyle, who ultimately is someone that copies what Batman does only in an extreme alternative.
There isn’t much to fear when it comes to actors doing their job in Nolan’s films, they are given the chance to create their own role from the ground up even when it comes to a character as timely as the Joker. Hardy and Hathaway are excellent additions to an already impressive cast and you couldn’t ask for two better actors to tackle Bane and Catwoman.
Of course the unknown is the hardest part now for fans. We know the new characters involved but how will they fit into the movie’s storyline? Apparently a leaked script was released online consisting of a surprising coherent plot and key scenes explained in detail. The recent announcement of Bane and Catwoman (who were no one to be found in the script) disregard this as another form of gossip circulating online.
The best suggestion of what will be in the final script most likely lies in the bits of comics and graphic novels featuring Bane and Catwoman. Nolan and writer David S. Goyer used numerous ideas and inspirations for the last two Batman films from classic printed storylines like Batman: Year One and Batman: The Long Halloween. Bane’s famous origin story Knightfall will surely have some impact on the script regarding Bane as a physical threat to Batman.
As of right now there is only speculation which is understandable since the movie hasn’t even started filming yet. Characters are still to be announced in the future and the rumors that Talia al Ghul and Vicki Vale may appear make The Dark Knight Rises even more thought-provoking.
It’s best to take each official bit of information released for what it truly is: absolutely nothing, just announcements that make people excited and fanboys flooding the internet with hype. But for such an anticipated movie like The Dark Knight Rises, the wait is too long to endure without talk about it. No comic book movie franchise has been executed like this before, and that’s why everyone is so excited to see what comes next in the series.
Stay tuned for more upcoming The Dark Knight Rises news.