The Batman Won’t be an Origin Story
Now that The Batman writer/director Matt Reeves has confirmed that Robert Pattinson is indeed his Bruce Wayne, the next logical question is just what kind of Batman he’ll be. We’d heard that Reeves had fashioned a script that was more of a noir detective story than your traditional superhero flick. Earlier this year, he had this to say to The Hollywood Reporter about his film:
“It’s very much a point of view-driven, noir Batman tale. It’s told very squarely on his shoulders, and I hope it’s going to be a story that will be thrilling but also emotional. It’s more Batman in his detective mode than we’ve seen in the films. The comics have a history of that. He’s supposed to be the world’s greatest detective, and that’s not necessarily been a part of what the movies have been. I’d love this to be one where when we go on that journey of tracking down the criminals and trying to solve a crime, it’s going to allow his character to have an arc so that he can go through a transformation.”
Now in a fresh piece by THR detailing the casting process that led to Pattinson becoming Battinson (apologies), writer Borys Kit sketches out a few more details about Reeves’ script:
“Reeves, who was hired to write and direct a new Batman movie in February 2017, was envisioning actors while penning the script, according to sources familiar with the filmmaker’s thinking,” THR‘s Borys Kit writes. “It helped that this new Batman needed to conform to a defined age bracket. He is written as around 30 years old, and the story is neither another rehashing of his origin nor the tale of a seasoned crimefighter ruling Gotham City. He is Bruce Wayne still trying to find his footing on his way to becoming the genius detective.”
This is an intriguing route and one that seems perfectly suited to Pattinson’s talents. The star went from being a teenage heartthrob thanks to playing dashing vampire Edward Cullen in the Twilight series to one of Hollywood’s hardest-to-pin-down talents, joining forces with one great director after another in smaller, weirder, and deliciously intense roles. These include his recent work in the Claire Denis film High Life, working with Ephraim Winslow for recently released The Lighthouse (for which he’s earning rave reviews), to the role that Reeves kept referring to during the casting process, playing Connie Nikas in the Safdie Brothers’ relentlessly intense Good Time (2017).
We’ve seen all the Batman origin stories we need for the moment, and it would be hard to top Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins. Plunging us into a neo-noir Gotham with Pattinson’s Batman already prowling the streets, learning the tricks of his trade as he goes along, sounds very appealing. Ditching the well-trod story of the murder of Bruce’s parents and starting right away with our man fighting back in the dangerous streets of Gotham gives both Reeves and Pattinson the film’s entire runtime to actually be Batman. What kind of Batman will Pattinson will make is one of the more intriguing questions that won’t be answered until the film’s 2021 release.
Featured image: PARIS, FRANCE – JANUARY 20: Robert Pattinson attends Dior Homme Menswear Fall/Winter 2018-2019 show as part of Paris Fashion Week at Grand Palais on January 20, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images for Dior Homme)