This report comes from All Things Fan Girl via AICN and details the main points from the talk, covering the Blu ray, BD-Live, a live Chris Nolan commentary on Dec 18th, the continuation of the Batman story (e.g. the third movie), lack of a directors cut and shooting an entire movie in IMAX, with workarounds for the noisiness of the camera.
This is a very good read..
Went to the Dark Knight Blu Ray release event with Chris Nolan last night.
Before tonight I had never even HEARD of BD Live. Apparently it’s Xbox Live for Blu-Ray? If you have a BD Live enabled Blu Ray player or a PS3, then you can connect to the internet and partake in the potential awesomeness. The Dark Knight is Warner Brothers’ first foray into this format and it’s shaping up to be reason alone to invest in a Blu-Ray Player.
First of all, it comes with tons of content, waiting to be streamed for free– the newest Warner’s trailers, episodes of Warner Première Motion Comics (Mad Love! Shadow of Ra’s al Ghul!) and more. And because everything is streaming, you can get to the content faster and it doesn’t take up any hard drive space. One of my favorite features of TDK BD Live is the commentary option. With a computer & webcam, you can record YOURSELF giving commentary for the whole movie or just a scene here, a scene there. Then, when people go on BD Live, they can select your commentary to watch with the film. Now, it’s doubtful that I would ever watch a stranger’s commentary, but a friend’s? Certainly. Maybe even someone famous? A blogger, a writer, a director, an actor, a critic, a technician — people not involved with the film who would have no business doing commentary for the dvd, but would have an interesting perspective, making their thoughts available to the general public? Yes, I’m into that.
In speaking with the LA Times and asked whether Batman would participate in any DC crossovers, Christopher Nolan responded,
Nolan: I don’t think our Batman, our Gotham, lends itself to that kind of cross-fertilization. It goes back to one of the first things we wrangled with when we first started putting the story together: Is this a world in which comic books already exist? Is this a world in which superheroes already exist? If you think of “Batman Begins” and you think of the philosophy of this character trying to reinvent himself as a symbol, we took the position — we didn’t address it directly in the film, but we did take the position philosophically — that superheroes simply don’t exist. If they did, if Bruce knew of Superman or even of comic books, then that’s a completely different decision that he’s making when he puts on a costume in an attempt to become a symbol. It’s a paradox and a conundrum, but what we did is go back to the very original concept and idea of the character. In his first appearances, he invents himself as a totally original creation.
GB: That doesn’t lend itselt to having him swing on a rope across the Metropolis skyline.
Nolan: No, correct, it’s a different universe. It’s a different way of looking at it. Now, it’s been done successfully, very successfully, in the comics so I don’t dispute it as an approach. It just isn’t the approach we took. We had to make a decision for “Batman Begins.”
GB: A different path…
Nolan: Yes, completely different. It would have given a very, very different meaning to what Bruce Wayne was leaving home to do and coming back home to do and putting on the costume for and all the rest. We dealt with on its own terms: What does Batman mean to Bruce Wayne, what is he trying to achieve? He has not been influenced by other superheroes. Of course, you see what we’re able to do with Joker in this film is that he is able to be quite theatrical because we set up Batman as an example of intense theatricality in Gotham. It starts to grow outward from Batman. But the premise we began with is that Batman was creating a wholly original thing. To be honest, we went even further than the comics on this point. I can’t remember at what point in the comics history the idea came about that he was a fan of Zorro as a kid. I haven’t researched that, but I don’t believe it goes back terribly far.”
The interview continues by discussing Nolan’s next project, his time off and the upcoming Academy Awards:
GB: You’ve said you aren’t sure what you next project will be. But clearly Warner Bros. looks at Batman as a core part of their movie business, perhaps now more than ever, and there are marketplace pressures on them to schedule the next installment of the franchise. Are you getting a lot of pressure to make a decision?
Nolan: They’re being extremely gracious. I have a very good relationship with the studio. They know that I really needed to go on holiday and take some time to figure what I want to do next. They’ve been very respectful of that, which is terrific and one of the reasons I enjoy working with Warner Bros.
GB: The nominations for the 81st Academy Awards will be announced in January. How meaningful would it be for the cast and crew of “The Dark Knight” if the late Heath Ledger is nominated for best supporting actor?
Nolan: I think the thing that has always been important to me in light of Heath’s death is the responsibility I’ve felt to his work. The responsibility of crafting the film in such a way that his performance came across the way he intended. Clearly, that has been the case. That’s one of the reasons I take such pride in the film.
I felt a great wave of relief, really, as people first started to see the performance and it was clear that they were getting the performance. It’s easy to forget with everything that’s happened what an enormous challenge it was for Heath to take on this iconic role. He rose to that challenge so admirably that any expression of people being excited or moved by his performance is a wonderful thing. Whatever form that takes. People coming to see his performance and getting it. It’s been extremely satisfying for all of us already. Anything that adds to that would be wonderful.
We posted these rumors a short while back (along with a Jolie Catwoman one), but now some news of this casting has come from the lips of Michael Caine in speaking with MTV:
“They’ve already got them in mind,” said Caine, when asked who he’d like to see take up arms against the Caped Crusader. “It’s Johnny Depp as The Riddler. And The Penguin is Philip Seymour Hoffman. I read it in the paper.”
So Caine is like the rest of us, reading gossip in the tabloids, right? Except for one thing…according to the actor, he confirmed the news through the studio itself.
“When Christopher [Nolan] said we were going to do ‘The Dark Knight’ next, I didn’t what that meant in Batman terms,” related Caine, who plays Bruce Wayne’s loyal butler, Alfred Pennyworth. “I said, ‘What’s the story?’ and he said The Joker. I said, ‘Oh, s–t! How are you going to top Jack [Nicholson]?’ He said, ‘Well, I’ve cast Heath Ledger. And I went ‘Ha! I couldn’t top Jack, but if anyone could, maybe Heath could.’ And he did.
“I was with [a Warner Bros.] executive and I said, ‘Are we going to make another one?’ They said yeah. I said, ‘How the hell are we going to top Heath? And he says ‘I’ll tell you how you top Heath — Johnny Depp as The Riddler and Philip Seymour Hoffman as The Penguin.’ I said, ‘S–t, they’ve done it again!’” [Laughs]
No doubt there will be some official clarification of this announcement in the coming days, however what is interesting is the clear intention for The Penguin and The Riddler to star in the third movie, whether Depp or Hoffman sign on is another matter — and one that I still don’t see being confirmed for a long while yet.
How do you feel about The Riddler and Penguin potentially appearing in Batman 3?
In all the debate about the sequel to The Dark Knight, a lot of people suggested the possible return of Harvey Dent and the Two Face character. In an interview with Coming Soon, Aaron Eckhart has confirmed once and for all that Harvey Dent is dead. It is also interesting to hear that the original plan was to bring The Joker back for the third movie, whether that will still happen is highly debatable.
CS/SHH!: Is Harvey Dent alive?
Aaron Eckhart: No. He is dead as a door nail.
CS/SHH!: So he’s not coming back?
Eckhart: He ain’t coming back baby!
CS/SHH!: I was hoping he would.
Eckhart: No. I asked Chris [Nolan] that question and he goes, “You’re dead” before I could even get the question out of my mouth. “Hey Chris, am I?” “You’re dead!” Alright, cool.
CS/SHH!: That’s not a problem in comic book movies. You could still come back.
Eckhart: I think in contract negotiations it’s a problem.
CS/SHH!: So you were never signed on for another film?
Eckhart: No, I’m not coming back. I think unfortunately, Heath [Ledger] was supposed to go on and that didn’t work out. I’m nobody. I’m a cog. I have no say over this sort of stuff. I’m sure that there’s so many other characters that they could whip together. I heard Angelina Jolie was going to be Catwoman or something like that. I thought that was a great idea. I’d like to be in that one.
Would you want to see a Joker played by someone other than Heath Ledger?
On the scale of fan created works, this ranks very highly. Below you can find a fan’s prediction of what the next Batman movie shall entail; combining The Gotham Times, newspaper stories and hints of The Riddler to create a tantalizing look into the future. The question mark featuring the bat symbol, which played in a similar vein as a mouth during the Why So Serious campaign, is a nice and subtle touch.
Intrepid internet scourer BatGirl567 has provided links to two articles discussing the possibilities of the third Batman movie.
Cinema Blend believe that The Joker was originally written into the first draft of a Batman 3 story and that all references have since been removed. I would interpret this as nothing more than rumor with no credible source — mainly because their ‘scooper’ tells them that Two-Face will feature prominently in the next film, “covering his origins” — the general consensus is that this will not happen. They continue to suggest that the graphic novels The Long Halloween and Dark Victory will also be referenced.
With Two Face and the Joker gone, we need some new Villains… MSNBC have some suggestions, although there are also some stark ommissions (Harley Quinn and Bane both being repeated suggestions in our ongoing discussions). I have paraphrased, added pictures and provided appropriate links.
Catwoman and Talia al Ghul
[…] Jewel thief Selina Kyle [Catwoman] is a habitual criminal, but she does adhere to a moral code of her own, even if it often puts her at odds with Batman.
[…] Talia al Ghul is perhaps even more complicated; she’s the daughter of R’as al Ghul, sometimes aiding her father’s plans for world domination, and sometimes siding with her lover. Although Batman has repeatedly foiled the illegal schemes of both father and daughter, R’as approves of Batman’s romance with Talia and would like to see them married; in some stories, Talia and Bruce Wayne even have a son.
Nolan-ability rating: Catwoman: A-. Talia al Ghul: B–
Catwoman seems almost certain to show up eventually if the current Batman series continues. Talia, on the other hand, probably won’t unless R’as al Ghul also returns, given her character’s intertwined relationship with both men.
Costumed crime lords: Penguin, Black Mask, Scarface and The Ventriloquist
[…] The dapper, gentlemanly Penguin, […] is portrayed these days in the comics as an eccentric but efficiently scheming criminal who controls much of Gotham City’s underground. Though this Penguin’s not as flamboyant as past versions have been, it’s still hard to take him seriously out of the comics’ operatically weird world, and Nolan himself has said moving Penguin into the movies would be “tricky.”
[…] Black Mask, a ruthless and brutal crime boss who takes his name from his ebony skull disguise, and comes with the twist that he bears a grudge against Bruce Wayne rather than his Batman alter ego.
[…] Arnold Wesker, a mild-mannered ventriloquist who keeps a bloody grip on his criminal empire but will only speak though his dummy, Scarface, a wooden doll carved to look like a 1930s gangster. [..] The duo would probably be laughed out of the theater.
Black Mask would fit perfectly, especially if they need another villain in Two-Face’s evil mode.
Nolan-ability Rating: Penguin: D. Black mask: B. Scarface: D.
FofR: Black Mask is an interesting suggestion; I wouldn’t want to see a new incarnation of The Penguin.
Monster men: Man-Bat, Killer Croc and Clayface
[…] Man-Bat is the Mr. Hyde-like double of scientist Kirk Langstrom, who transforms uncontrollably into a giant winged mammal after a lab accident. Killer Croc, similarly, is a mutated beast-man who’s slowly becoming less human and more crocodilian over time. […] Clayface, but the most well-known version is a bloblike creature that can change its shape and eats humans to survive.
Nolan-ability Rating: B+ for all three. “Overtly fantastical elements.“
FofR: Monsters in Nolan’s universe? I don’t see it happening — the power of The Dark Knight lies with its storyline firmly rooted in reality.
[…] Edward “Riddler” Nygma wears a trademark green suit covered with question marks […]. His jester-like qualities sometimes make him something of a low-rent Joker, but lately in the comics he’s turned over a new leaf and reinvented himself as a detective, solving puzzles instead of creating them.
[…] Cluemaster, who turned to a life of crime as after being fired from his high-profile TV job, with a signature attention-grabber of leaving clues behind for Batman to follow. Even the Riddler, not exactly the least gimmicky of villains, felt contempt for Cluemaster’s shtick, which he thought was a rip-off of his own.
Nolan-ability Rating: The Riddler: B. Cluemaster: D.
The Riddler’s apparently got a pretty good shot at a future film, if you can believe comments made recently by Gary Oldman [anyone have a link to these comments?]. “Doctor Who” star David Tennant reportedly would love to do it.
[…] Joe Coyne’s particular peccadillo was possibly the most pathetic of any of them: He was obsessed with pennies, going to ludicrous lengths to steal rare coins and one-cent stamps, and defended himself by hurling rolls of copper coins at Batman’s head.
Nolan-ability Rating: C-. “He’d work as comic relief” — [no he wouldn’t]
[…] A pair of twins [from the 1960s television show] — famous pianist Chandell and his evil brother Harry, who schemed to steal a fortune from Batman’s Aunt Harriet and blackmail his own brother in the bargain.
[…] Batman has his own magical imp who pops in every now and then to sow trouble.
Nolan-ability Rating: F.
FofR: Not a chance, seems like this writer was lazy in their villain shortlist — seriously.. Bat Mite!?
Also, whilst I am going over the villains, remember Zsasz in Batman Begins?
Know a lot about Batman villains?
We’re looking for some people to make Batman 3 villain proposals whilst providing some solid grounding to support them. We’d like to have some articles covering the lesser known potentials for Nolan’s straight-up Batman universe. Contact us
Christopher Nolan has stated an interest in the extensive and elaborate 70 year history of Batman — particularly the interesting parts that have not yet been in the movies or the sixties television show.
Meanwhile, The Riddler, The Penguin and Catwoman are all villains that have been bandied about as potentials for the next movie; I personally doubt whether we will see these characters pop up in the next feature. Instead I think we will see Nolan opt for a villain that impacts more on Batman/Bruce Wayne’s profile. As seen so devastatingly with The Joker, when the villain really messes with the Hero in every which way, the stories become much more intertwined, complex and exciting.
So — on that note:
Which villain(s) do you want to see in Batman 3?
The less obvious, the better — feel free to include your casting wishlists.
Talking with MTV, David Goyer says that he already “knows the theme” for the third Batman movie, although he also reiterates that a third movie is not set in stone and it could “go either way”.
“I think that’s the scariest thing – to think, could we come up with a third movie that was as good as the first two? Can we top ourselves?” screenwriter David Goyer asked aloud, almost rhetorically, in a recent conversation with MTV News. “Doing it a third time would be a big proposition.”
Make no mistake about it, though, a third film HAS been discussed, Goyer confessed, revealing that, while nothing is concrete, both a villain and a theme have been bandied about.
“We’ve only talked loosely about it, though, Chris and I,” Goyer said.
Interestingly, it’s the theme, and not the villain, that most interests me, especially given how the latter seems inexorably tied to the former in this new modern Batman universe. (Fear the predominant issue in “Begins” precipitating the introduction of Scarecrow, escalation in “Knight” similarly calling for The Joker.
The fact that Goyer has a theme he wants to keep in mind for a possible “Batman 3” means he also has a direction, a crisis, and, yes, a villain.
So what is it?
“I have one,” Goyer said laughing. “But I’m not going to tell you. Chris is very particular about that.
“I do think, though, that if there’s not a third film – these two movies stand on their own,” he added. “I think it could go either way.”
/Film have also spoken with Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan about Batman 3 — everything is still up in the air:
Nolan: “I don’t know what I’d do next, or what would happen next. I felt in doing a sequel that it would be a big mistake to try to hold anything back for future films. You have to put everything you can into this movie and try and make it as great as it can be.”
Christian Bale: “I always like to have to think when I’m leaving the theater. I do love any movie that leaves me questioning what has happened, what is going to happen. I see that in finishing the movie I want to know what will happen, what is going to happen. But it is completely in the hands of Chris, weather he decides to do that or not. It will be a lot of money that he didn’t give you any indication if that was going to happen or not? But it’s completely his decision. I can’t imagine doing this without Chris. I don’t even want to consider that because he’s created this. This is his.”
Interviewer: So do you think there will be a part 3 of Batman?
Christian Bale: Um, look, let’s wait and see…
Interviewer: Or, I guess it’d be part 6.
Christian Bale: No, no, no, no, no. [Smiling] Part 3 is what I’d consider it, yeah, I don’t say part 6. Batman begins — that was the beginning there, with all due respect to the others. We are re-creating this. You know, obviously the decision is out of my hands. I would, knowing the Dark Knight story, I would like very much to complete a trilogy. And I think that knowing the story of The Dark Knight, it leaves you anticipating something that really can get very, very interesting for a third. Now, the question would be: Is Chris going to be doing it? Because to me I find it tricky to imagine working on it without it being a collaboration with Chris.