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We are getting closer to Christopher Nolan’s final Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises, every day. In order to go in blind and enjoy every twist and turn the film has to offer I’ve been staying away from news for the flick. I even passed the writing of the Film Spotlight over to our contributor Kris Greet so I wouldn’t accidentally get spoiled. While we slowly march to July 20th, lets change paces like we did for The Amazing Spider-Man and speculate on possible villains in a Batman reboot (which I don’t think will be very far away if this is indeed the last Nolan/Bale Batman adventure).

Nolan was very smart to stay away from villains that appeared in other Batman films with Batman Begins when he used Ra’s al Ghul and Scarecrow, two lesser known villains that still have a lot of history. I think a new director/writer team will do the same and stay away from Nolan’s main baddies, including the Joker, Ra, Scarecrow, Two-Face, and now of course Bane, at least for the first movie in a new series. I also think the new series will start with Batman already being established, maybe a short montage origin recap (as used in The Incredible Hulk). So, who might they bring into the mix to face off with the Dark Knight?

Professor Hugo Strange. Not to be confused with Marvel Comic’s Doctor Strange, Hugo Strange might not be a house hold name, but he definitely has his place among Batman’s classic rogue gallery having first appeared in 1940. Strange is an insane psychologist who invented a serum to drive his victims in to mindless killing machines and him obsession with Batman lead him to want to become him. He is as smart as he is insane and is a formidable opponent for the Dark Knight. To take things one step further, you can have Strange’s serum create some of Batman’s other classic villains, like Man-Bat or Clayface, giving the movie a more superhuman vibe which could separate it from Nolan’s super realistic take on the hero.

Man-Bat. Playing off my last entry of Hugo Strange, I think this combo of villains could work really well. On the flip side, if done right, Man-Bat could work for the main villain also. You can make Dr. Kirk Langstrom a Wayne Enterprises scientist who has the best intentions who accidentally mutates himself in to the Man-Bat. Of course this would be very similar to the movie Spider-Man’s Green Goblin, Doc Ock and the remake’s Lizard stories. But just think how cool a Batman vs Man-Bat fight flying across the Gotham skyline would be! None of Nolan’s villains were any bit as monstrous as this guy, none nearly as scary either. (and for Warner Brothers, just think of all the toys they could sell!)

Deadshot. Yeah, I know he was in the last season of Smallville, but who cares? The “second greatest assassin” in the DC Universe could give Batman a run for his money. Sure, I can’t see him being the main villain, but imagine he is sent to kill Bruce Wayne in public during the day. Bruce has to hide the fact that he is Batman, but still get out of the situation alive– maybe enter Robin or Batgirl to come to his aid? This would be another thing to separate a remake from Nolan, the introduction of the Batman “family” of allies. Of course, who would send an assassin to kill Bruce Wayne? How about…

Lex Luthor. Yes, Superman’s top villain. Why would he be in Gotham going head to head with Batman? Luthor could be bank rolling Hugo Strange or he could send Deadshot to take out the head of Wayne Enterprises, one of his top defense competitors. Hopefully Luthor will be in Zack Synder’s upcoming Superman reboot, Man of Steel, in a cameo and maybe he can do the same in a possible Batman reboot. Luthor could be in the background, pulling the strings, in all of the upcoming DC Comics movies creating an actual shared universe. Setting up an epic World’s Finest crossover with Superman and Batman, or maybe he could be forming the Injustice Gang to go head to head with the Justice League in a future crossover of all of DC’s top heroes.

If DC Comics and Warner Brothers are going to reboot Batman so soon after Nolan’s acclaimed trilogy, then they better give us something special. And Batman in a fantastic universe sharing scenes with the likes of Superman, Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman would be the perfect hook and give a reason for the reboot that no one would complain about. Now, who should play Bruce Wayne/Batman?

Release Date: July 20, 2012
Studio: Warner Brothers
Director: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard, Morgan Freeman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Gary Oldman, and Michael Caine.
Plot: Eight years after Batman took the fall for Two Face’s crimes, a new terrorist leader, Bane, overwhelms Gotham’s finest, and the Dark Knight resurfaces to protect a city that has branded him an enemy. (via IMDB)

Thoughts: Well the end is in sight for a journey that began eight years ago and is arguably one of the greatest cinematic trilogies of all time. Christopher Nolan’s Batman franchise took comic book movies to a new level. Placing the character in the real world and giving the characters and story that sense of realism that could make you believe that this could actually happen. The Dark Knight Rises is shaping up to be THE movie of 2012.

The Dark Knight Rises, like it predecessors, boast an impressive cast. Joining the returning Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine are Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. I think out of three films, this cast seems to be the best by far. Nolan has said that he didn’t want to save anything from this movie and this looks like it. While not a lot is known officially about the story, that hasn’t stopped the fanboys and internet writers from speculating.

From the trailers and other footage that’s been released, It seems like Nolan is sticking true to his word. There’s already a sense of epicness to this and a feeling that this will easily top anything that’s been done in the two previous films. Hardy and Hathaway look impressive as Bane and Selena Kyle/Catwoman. I like the fact that the film is set quite a while after the events of The Dark Knight. (8 years is official figure I keep hearing). Not only is this a great story setting but this could be a great move for Warner Brothers. With Nolan definitively stating this is the last Batman film he is directing. It’s been rumoured that he will be on the reboot as a producer much like his role on next years Superman Reboot “Man Of Steel”.

If that is the case, this reboot or next series of films could take place in those eight years. Bale has recently said he would up for a fourth film if the story is right- but we’ll have to wait and see. The Dark Knight Rises will be giving an epic conclusion to this wonderful journey and I think it will be the best movie of the summer. I’ve seen The Avengers and loved it, but I just think that TDKR will be better. Nolan hasn’t let us down yet and I think he will be able to top everything else we’ve seen. Either way, July 20th can’t come quick enough for this Bat-Fan.

Along with the four new key Batman series (see: DC Comics Announces New Batman Titles), DC Comics has also revealed seven other Batman family books which will be part of the upcoming renumbering/reboot.

Nightwing #1 (above left)
Writer: Kyle Higgins
Artist: Eddy Barrows
Official Description: After a tenure as the Batman of Gotham, Dick Grayson resumes his mantle as Nightwing! As Dick embraces his identity, Haley’s Circus, the big top where he once performed with his family, returns to Gotham – bringing with it a history of murder, mystery and superhuman evil. Nightwing must confront friends and enemies from his past as he searches for the source of an even greater evil.

Batgirl #1 (above right)
Writer: Gail Simone
Artist: Ardian Syaf & Vicente Cifuentes
Official Description: Batgirl’s going to have to face the city’s most horrifying new villains as well as dark secrets from her past…

Catwoman #1 (above left)
Writer: Judd Winick
Artist: Guillem March
Official Description: Meet Catwoman. She’s addicted to the night. Addicted to shiny objects. Addicted to Batman. Most of all, Catwoman is addicted to danger. She can’t help herself, and the truth is – she doesn’t want to. She’s good at being bad, and very bad at being good.

Birds of Prey #1 (above right)
Writer: Duane Swierczynski
Artist: Jesus Saiz
Official Description: The Birds of Prey are Gotham City’s covert ops team, taking down the villains other heroes can’t touch.

Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 (above left)
Writer: Scott Lobdell
Artist: Kenneth Rocafort
Official Description: Batman’s former sidekick had put his past as The Red Hood behind him, when the reclusive Jason Todd finds himself unwillingly elected as the leader of an all-new team of outlaw vigilantes. As The Red Hood once again, Jason Todd will lead this new team of antiheroes, including Green Arrow’s rejected sidekick Arsenal and Starfire, a former prisoner of intergalactic war.

Batwing #1 (above right)
Writer: Judd Winick
Artist: Ben Oliver
Official Description: This September, join with us in this historic moment when the first black character to wear the Batman mantle will be the first to star in his own ongoing series.

Batwoman #1 (not pictured)
Official Description: The highly-anticipated new series from the multiple award-winning creative team of J.H. Williams III, Haden Blackman and Amy Reeder begins in BATWOMAN #1.

Last week DC Comics revealed the shocking news that they were rebooting the whole DC Universe of books, renumbering them all to #1 (including the two longest running titles out there Action Comics and Detective Comics), and they will be releasing the print issues and digital issues on the same date.

While I hate the idea of restarting continuity (or rewinding it? It is really unsure at this point exactly what they are doing), it could lead to some good storytelling as Marvel Comic’s Spider-Man “Brand New Day” did as it rewrote years of history.  DC has slowly started to reveal the new creative teams for some of their most popular characters. Today I want to focus on the Dark Knight…

Detective Comics #1 (above right)
Writer/Artist: Tony Daniel
Official Description: Marking the first time Batman will appear in a debut issue of Detective Comics, the series will find Bruce Wayne on the trail of a dangerous serial killer known only as the Gotham Ripper.

Batman and Robin #1 (above left)
Writer: Peter Tomasi
Artist: Pat Gleason
Official Descriotion: …will explore the family dynamic of the Caped Crusader as Bruce Wayne battles the Gotham underworld with the help of his son, Damian, in the role of Robin.

Batman: The Dark Knight #1 (above left)
Writer/Artist: David Finch
Official Description: A twisted adventure that pulls Bruce Wayne deep into the halls of the famed Arkham Asylum, a jail for Gotham City’s most dangerous and criminally deranged.

Batman #1 (above right)
Writer: Scott Snyder
Artist: Greg Capullo
Official Description: In the series, Bruce Wayne once again becomes the only character taking on the Batman name.

What do you think about the new run of Batman titles? Is it more of the same or are you excited about the creative teams that DC has put together? Do you like the idea of the whole DC Universe starting fresh or is it finally time to give up on them?

Hey guys and gals, I’m back from a very interested trip and ready to get back to some writing. Welcome back to the Pit!

  • Tom Hardy is BANE! Anne Hathaway is CATWOMAN! Christopher Nolan’s third Batman looking is shaping up to be epic. I can not wait to see Bane finally done right in live action and I think Hathaway is a very nice choice for the hooker turned villain turned antihero.
  • After 40 years, Orson Welles’ final film The Other Side of the Wind might finally see the light of day! The film was shot, but never edited before he passed away. The movie is reflexive of Hollywood, described by Welles’ to his leading actor John Huston; “It’s about a bastard director, full of himself, who catches people and creates and destroys them. It’s about us, John.” I’d love to watch it.
  • Wonder Woman is now heading back on to the small screen! NBC has picked up David Kelly’s take on the Amazon princess! Next season we might be losing Clark Kent/Smallville, but at least we’ll have one DC hero to watch weekly. I just hope it is good.  Marvel is still trying to push out a new Hulk series.
  • Do you have a website? Looking to move to a new host? Than you should do a search of hosts via web hosting hub. You might find what you are looking for!
Posted on January 24th, 2011 by ThePit | Comments Off on The Pit: Batman, Orsen Welles, & More!
Filed Under Entertainment

SupermanI think the problem with writing and making a comic book film is the material itself. The thing is if you take the original comics with all that camp-ness and so on, nobody is going to want to watch it. We’ll end up with a endless supply of Batman and Robins. In theory, Superman Returns should have been an awesome film. With it being a pseudo sequel to the Richard Donner films and that series, but it just never came together right. It was so freaking boring. I’d rather  have seen Tim Burton’s Superman Lives with the all weird stuff he was adding because at least it would have been something new to watch and from recently released test pictures it would have been very different which sometimes isn’t a bad thing.

Batman Begins was a great Batman film. It was good to finally see his full origin on the big screen. To be honest, I don’t like Christian Bale as Batman. I don’t even think much of him as an actor. I would have preferred Angel‘s David Boreanaz in the role. Everything was good about the film. In contract, I thought that The Dark Knight was just plain awful. The only parts that worked for me were the action scenes. I honestly believe, and I mean no disrespect, that this film wouldn’t have garnered the attention, money and great reviews had it not been the fact that Heath Ledger tragically passed away. His Joker didn’t work for me.

Trying to make DC Comics on film for Hollywood has never been a easy task. Hopefully that will change starting with Green Lantern and once they get Nolan and Bale finished with Batman and move on with a new actor and director. So we’ll finally get to see a long awaited Justice League of America film. Zack Snyder on Superman is a genius move and I long to see this film get made, so here’s hoping that us DC fans will finally get the movies we so longingly have wanted.

Check out these Green Lantern related products…

The Mid-Week Pit, Wolverine, Star Wars, Lost, Harry Potter, Action Movies

Right off the bat I have to post this image, the first of Chris Evans as Captain America (big thanks to Entertainment Weekly!):

Entertainment Weekly Captain America

I love the color and look of the uniform (for a full body shot of the CA stunt double, click here). Revealed in the article is that Evans signed a 6 picture deal with Marvel. Epic. Okay, lets move on with some other comic book movie news…

  • One thing I’m not digging, is changes to the X-Men universe. It was revealed that in the upcoming First Class, Mystique will be an insecure teenage girl who is hiding the fact that she is really a mutant. Something about that just feels off, than again I thought the character was underused and mishandled in both Singer’s and Ratner’s X-Men movies, so I shouldn’t be surprised here. Pictures also reveal James McAvoy as Charles Xavier with hair. I wasn’t sold on him originally, but with hair he feels like a completely different character. Are they going to reveal the mysterious origin of  Xavier’s baldness? Come on guys…
  • Staying with the Marvel Comics universe of movies, a lot of names have joined Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, the direct sequel to the 2007 lackluster Mark Steven Johnson movie.  Nicolas Cage returns as Johnny Blaze and is joined by Christopher Lambert, Ciaran Hinds, Johnny Whitworth, Violante Placido, and Thor‘s Idris Elba.  Elba recently talked about having a multiple picture deal with Marvel, but I don’t think people expected a supporting role in the new Ghost Rider, personally I was hoping for Elba being cast as Luke Cage, but a lot more people want him as Black Panther. How many comic roles will Idris Elba need to take before he gets a real character? The film is being directed by the team of Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, the guys who brought us the Crank series. That gives me a lot more hope than the first one that was directed by Mark Steven Johnson, who also directed the disappointing Daredevil flick.
  • Christopher Nolan’s third Batman film has a title! The Dark Knight Rises. Yeah, seriously, it is that bad. Nolan has also denied rumors that the Riddler will be featured in the film. Earlier he said no to Mr. Freeze, so we are slowly narrowing down the villain possibilities. This might be Nolan’s last Batman film, so I’m hoping for someone good (or a good combo of villains). Maybe Hugo Strange along with a couple “monster” types; Man-Bat, Clayface, or Killer Croc? They can continue the theme of the mob and give us Black Mask. Tom Hardy, who worked with Nolan on Inception, has been cast in an undisclosed role (maybe a villain?). We have until 2012 for the film, so we might not hear anything else anytime soon.
  • Darren Aronofsky will be directing X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2. (I think they can remove the “X-Men Origins” from the title, seriously guys) Aronofsky works best with a gritty realistic style, as used in The Wrestler and Requiem for a Dream. His attempt at sci-fi in The Fountain fell a little flat. I want a really good Wolverine film, but I have zero faith after X-Men Origins: Wolverine.  I don’t think Fox will let a good movie happen and I don’t think Aronofsky should waste his time here.
  • Right on the heels of news that Mark Wahlberg may take the leading role in a remake of The Crow comes news that director Stephen Norrington is off the project. Norrington directed the original Blade for Marvel, and while a good film it was very flawed (especially the ending). Since Blade he has only directed two films, The Last Minute, which I’ve never heard of, and the horrible adaptation of the graphic novel The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. I think The Crow might be better off without him.

Are you excited about the upcoming crop of comic book movies? What will you be seeing?

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