Bane’s Voice Before & After Redubbing; Tom Hardy’s ‘Star Trek’ Screen Test

Published 3 years ago by , Updated August 9th, 2012 at 12:23 pm,

In December, when the prologue from The Dark Knight Rises premiered before the IMAX version of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, the buzz surrounding the scene was less concerned with the impressive stunt work and more concerned with the unintelligible nature of Tom Hardy’s Bane voice.

At the time, unnamed sources swore up and down that Christopher Nolan would not alter the voice for the final cut, saying that the director “doesn’t dumb things down” for audiences. Well, if indeed ‘clarifying dialogue’ is a means of ‘dumbing things down,’ it’s obvious from the above video that that’s exactly what Nolan did.

When the prologue was released – as well as the initial theatrical trailer – there were fans who chalked American audiences’ inability to understand the voice to the strange British accent Hardy was affecting. But it’s fairly clear from the before and after comparison that the over the top accent wasn’t nearly as confounding as the garbled audio.

Bane Voice Before and After Banes Voice Before & After Redubbing; Tom Hardys Star Trek Screen Test

I think it’s also fair to say that merely clarifying the dialogue didn’t compromise the integrity of Nolan’s artistic vision. Unless there’s a meaningful point being made by making the dialogue incomprehensible – a la Brad Pitt’s Pikey character from Snatch – it’s easy enough to indicate that Bane is talking through a mask without baffling ticket buyers in the process. After all, if the characters in the film have no trouble understanding Bane, why should we?

Then again, it could’ve been a hilarious and entertaining turn of events if none of the characters in the film understood what he was saying either.


Tom Hardy’s Bane-esque ‘Star Trek’ Screen Test

Meanwhile, the Internet has unearthed a ten-year-old Tom Hardy screen test from Star Trek: Nemesis that features an accent similar to the one he used for Bane.

In Nemesis, Hardy played the villainous Shinzon, a clone of Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) who (SPOILER ALERT) died precisely the same way that Lurtz did at the end of The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring.

Check out the screen test below:

While the voice is obviously not quite as over the top as Bane’s, there are moments when the Bane vibe shines through. It’s worth noting that Hardy toned it down for the final cut of Nemesis – or perhaps we should say he ‘dumbed it down’ – a film so unsuccessful (both critically and financially) that it gave way to J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot.

Are you glad that Christopher Nolan altered Bane’s voice for the final cut of The Dark Knight Rises? Drop us a line in the comments.

The Dark Knight Rises is in theaters everywhere.


Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.

Source: Buzzfeed

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  1. Overall, I’m very happy with the changes. Bane still sounding menacing and scary, but he was much easier to understand. It wasn’t perfect. He sounded very strange at times, especially in the opening scene. And sometimes, on the other end of the spectrum, I couldn’t understand him. But overall, I think it worked.

  2. If I could describe what I thought of Tom Hardy’s version of Bane’s voice was, it would be this: his voice is a B. A. Version of Sean Connery but a very fearful and authoritative voice within a mask.

    Anyways, I am happy they did the fix. I work in sound recording and its not impossible to fix something like that. It takes some time but you can do it and the sound editor on this movie showed us that you can.

    Great movie!

  3. If I could describe what I thought of Tom Hardy’s version of Bane’s voice was, it would be this: his voice is a B. A. Version of Sean Connery but a very fearful and authoritative voice within a mask.

    Anyways, I am happy they did the fix. I work in sound recording and its not impossible to fix something like that. It takes some time but you can do it and the sound editor on this movie showed us that you can.

    Great movie!

  4. Wish they would have fixed it A LOT MORE!!! There were a lot of times people in the audiance would say, “what did he say?” and I was right there with them!! To me it was a drain to the movie trying to understand what the heck Bane just said. Loved the speed up fight though toward the end!!!

  5. The first version sounds like a camcorder bootleg, so it doesn’t really make for a fair comparison.
    Still, I like the intonation in the first version of the voice better.

  6. Definitely better in the prologue. I was about 5 seconds away from walking out of the theatre. He sounded creepy before. He sounds like an over dub for a foreign movie now. People obviously didn’t get the point in Bane’s character. He snaps necks when people don’t understand him.
    Bane: “Why are you here?”
    Henchmen: “Answer him!”
    Bane: “I was asking you.”

    Bane: “It would be extremely painful…”
    CIA: “you’re a big guy!”
    Bane: “…for you.”
    He expects you to understand him, or pay the consequences.
    How about Batman’s voice? Batman’s last moments in the film consisted of angry mumbles and lisping. I took it for what it was, it’s not my work it’s the artist’s. Honestly if people want to be part of the movie, they should tryout out for a role, film it themselves, or write the scripts. People’s complaints are changing an artists work, destroying the artist’s vision.

  7. I preferred the first voice but I’m glad they cleared it up. I don’t get how making a voice easier to hear is “dumbing it down”. By that logic people with hearing problems are of low intelligence.

    • thats a great point. i too preferred the first voice. it was more menacing while the altered one gave him an heir of superiority and a sarcastic tone that no doubt did its job, just in some scenes more than others.

    • thanks for that link.

      • You guys do realize that that article is a joke, right?

        • is it? i dont see any reference to it being a joke besides the picture….

          • Besides the whole article sounding like something Nolan would NEVER do, “So, What’s News?” is a satire site.

            • Yeah, it’s all satire.


              When I first clicked on your link, I thought it was real, until I realized that I hadn’t heard anything even remotely supporting that article, and it just doesn’t make sense either. Critics haven’t been criticizing Bane’s voice, they’ve been praising everything, except for elements of the plot. And it also says “3D” in there, which is a dead giveaway. Rereading the article, it’s actually hilarious.

              • oh my bad guys lol i have never been on that site before. I was just searching if some sort of extended edition would be released for blu ray or something. I feel smart.

                • Haha, it’s all good bro. I had never heard of that site either, and I was initially fooled as well. It happens to the best of us. You can never trust this damn internet of ours. :)

  8. Understood Bane perfectly in the prologue and I loved the raspy, wheezing sound he had.

    The re-dub certainly made it louder though, which I suppose allowed for the moaners to shut up.

    Bane’s voice for the rest though, I could listen to that all day. Simply incredible.

  9. I nver understood why Nemesis gets such a raw deal, it is a thousand times better than Insurrection.

    • I agree.

    • Amen to that!

      However I sure do wish they had made more STTNG films that were like the seocnd with the Borg as the villian. That was a great STTNG film!

  10. I thought that it wasn’t that hard to understand what he said in the prologue. They only difference seems to be that his voice sounds sharper, clearer. Where as in the Prologue it sounds garbled, crackily more like a live recording. I don’t think it’s affected the performance and vision at all. I was expecting there to be more of a difference and thought it would be like when they heavily cut a film for the theatrical release and we’d always wonder what his original performance sounded like and that this new one would sound too much like it had been tweaked and tampered with digitally and so it wasn’t entirely his own voice but now it sounds like the voice is exactly the same. Same accent and slight metallic ring to it but sharper can kinda tell it’s be rerecorded in a booth but I don’t think that matters and I’d say Tom Hardy could probably do the voice if u stopped him on the street and it would sound the same as on the finished film where before I had my doubts thinking it wouldn’t sound the same because they’d tweaked the sound digitally.

  11. The clarity at the end of the prologue when he was talking to the Dr. and his henchman was necessary, but i quite enjoyed Banes voice before changes in the beginning, when his mask was just revealed. Sounded much lower and menacing imo.

    On another note, they gave Tom Hardy a butt (Cleft) chin for star trek, lol He doesn’t have one during the screen test, but does in the film

    • Of course they did. he has to look a little like picard

  12. In the prologue I couldn’t really understand what he was saying, but in the film his voice sounded goofy to me.
    I guess if I could pick, I’d go with the Prologue voice. Better to hear a scary voice that you can’t understand than a weird Sean Connery/Darth Vader mix up that makes you want to chuckle at times.

    I wonder if the Blu-Ray release will have different options… That would be awesome because then a person can pick which voice-over he/she wants to listen to in the movie!

    • That’s exactly what I was thinking.

      • Hah, that would be awesome. I’d go with the original voice track for sure – though I wonder of the rest of the movie would have been in the style of the original.

    • Thank you! I’ve the same opinion on this. The original voice was much creepier and I’d choose it any day over the edited version.

  13. Ben: Are you saying that Tom Hardy was actually voicing Bane and not Jeremy Irons with a Scottish accent? Wow… you just blew my mind. ;)

  14. Bane’s dialogue during the first Batman showdown and his revolution soeech atop the tumbler were my highlights. The prologue voice sounded extra loud compared to the rest of the movie IMO Bascially Nolan sayin F*** YOU to the complainers lol

  15. When Bane was speaking slowly and somewhat under his breath it was awesome and very menacing but at other times he sounded a bit ridiculous. As for batman, yea Bale is a great Bruce Wayne, but while it might be sad that Nolan’s batman is ending, noone can tell me they’ll be unhappy that we won’t have to hear that batman voice in the next movie.

    • I can, quite honestly, state that I WILL miss Bale as BOTH Bruce and Batman. He did an excellent job portraying the haunted billionaire playing at being shallow and distant. He ALSO did (IMO) a wonderful job showing a secretive hero who has learned about the use of theatricality and applied that lesson extremely well to his mission. I can easily see a “real” Batman using such an extreme voice to throw off any connection to his other life AND to sound off (thus, disturbing and frightening to criminals)…The effect of the voice was even played up perfectly by Ledger’s Joker who batted not an eyelash when encountering Batman and his voice…even when supposedly beaten. He feared nothing.

      • I had no problem with the growling voice, your right it completely makes sense for him to use it for intimidation. However, my problem is the lisp he developed (which bruce wayne doesn’t have). Was it because of the mask? It seems like he can only breathe through his mouth when he has it on. Surely they could’ve fixed that.

      • While you make a good point about Batman using an extreme voice to hide his identity, I still feel that BTAS did the best job of showing a difference in Batman’s/Bruce’s voice. Batman spoke in a deep low growl that still utilized his natural voice and didn’t go over the top with it. This is why I like BB over TDK in terms of Bale’s voice. When he spoke in BB, there was some grit and growl to his voice but he didn’t sound like he had throat cancer. TDK it was very over-exaggerated but I like TDKR because it seemed like he cut back on tearing his throat out.

        • The Flass interogation is the Batman voice at its finest. Just the right amount of growl to create the complete look of Batman. You would be scared sh*tless.

    • I agree. The moments where he didn’t sound excited were great. Why Hardy or Nolan felt it would be good to have Bane go higher with the pitch of his voice at times I don’t understand.

  16. I’m happy they changed it mostly because my hearing is pretty bad. So I would have been extremely upset if I sat through a movie and couldn’t understand a character so important.

  17. I’m glad they only altered Bane’s voice for the prologue and not the rest of the movie. Bane’s voice is so epic and it deserved to be heard the way it was meant to be. I just mad they altered in the prologue. Wasn’t need at all.

    • How do you know they didn’t alter it for the rest of the movie?

      • It just seems so similar to his voice in the original prologue.

      • @Ben Moore

        Any word at SR as to whether or not Warner Brothers plan to reboot the BATMAN franchices ala all new actors and orgina story or do they plan to contonue the existing BATMAN franchies retaining the feel of realism but with a new director and (more thne likely ) diffeerent actors for NBATMAN/WAYNe and Alfred if not aslo other characters?

        I think WB was a great oppertunity to continue the sucess of BATMAN under the direction of a new Director and a partailly new cast (replacig Bats And Alfred but keping the rest of the cast) while retaining what has already been established in the current Nolan-esque BATMAN-verse. People know and love what Nolan has established, it seems like such a waste to throw it all to the side and start over just because the director is option out of future films.

  18. I don’t know how anyone could take Bane seriously with that outragous accent.

    I thought original was cool. I didn’t imagine Bane being like that. The way he spoke and his manners didn’t do it for me at all in the whole movie. He was never once intimidating or scary.

  19. Thank goodness they re-dubbed that voice…..

  20. Bane’s voice was terrible. He sounded like Sean Connery doing a Darth Vader impression and not once was it menacing.

    • I think it’s more of Darth Vader doing a Sean Connery impression… but I guess either way works ;)

      Anyway, IMO there were definitely some moments where he sounded menacing and scary (when he and Bats fought in the sewers he had some great lines that worked very well for examples), but yeah, for the biggest part of the movie his voice was goofy for me.

  21. I admit I didn’t bother reading all comments everywhere, but all I’ve seen so far about Bane’s voice related to how (un)clear it’s been. But how about the motherflippin’ seanconneryesque accent?!

    • Dylan & Avenger: Thank you.

  22. Loved the end result…. but thought the first was just as cool..

  23. i was a bit sad when i found out Bane wasn’t going to be mexican in the Dark Knight Rises. i know it would have been hard to keep a big luchador from being too comedic but still, you should respect the homage!

    • He’s not Mexican in the comics.

      • i thought he was like brazilian or cuban in the comics?

        • According to the comics, hes from a fictional country/state called Santa Prisca. I think it’s supposed to be in the Caribbean.

  24. Personally, I thought Tom’s performance in Nemesis was fantastic. Best part of the whole movie!

  25. Does anyone know where Bane’s prison was in the movie?

  26. Bane’s voice totally worked for me. In Batman & Robin he was just a senseless brute, but in DKR, what he said and how he said it showed clearly he was a criminal mastermind to be reckoned with. Then he drove that point home with the jet hijacking/crashing.

    And Nolan redubbing Bane’s lines was dumbing things down, it was smart. You can’t enjoy a film if you can’t understand what the heck a major character is saying!

  27. Banes voice was awesome,

    zmaslanik said it best – It was like Sean Connery but with in way that commanded fear and authority. It was a different voice – one I think we’ve never heard before or at least in a while. I think Bane was a superb criminal in this 3rd installment. Alot of people are complaining about his voice, but I think it was awesome.

  28. Tom Hardy looks very mature for a 10-year old in the Star Trek screen test.