Rumor Patrol: ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Set Photos Reveal Lazarus Pit

Published 4 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:14 am,

Dark Knight Rises Lazarus Pit Rumor Patrol: The Dark Knight Rises Set Photos Reveal Lazarus Pit

As Chris Nolan’s third (and presumably final) Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises, prepares to start shooting, already this highly-anticipated movie is under the scrutiny of would-be paparazzi. The first alleged set photo from TDKR has emerged, reportedly showcasing a location on the film’s Jodhpur, India set.

While no actors, vehicles, or costumes can be seen in the photos, blurred shots of the crew working on one of the many set pieces that will be featured in Nolan’s film have already set the rumor mill spinning – and with good reason.

Up until now, Nolan has maintained that he wishes for his Batman universe to be a self-contained one that his firmly grounded in reality (well, as real as such a character and story can be). Batman Begins went to great lengths to explore how a man could in fact transform himself into a pointy-eared caped vigilante; The Dark Knight continued that trend by tweaking iconic villains like The Joker and Two-Face in order to portray them in more real-world terms.

We’ve known for awhile that Dark Knight Rises will tie Nolan’s Bat-trilogy back to Batman Begins, and that the villain Ra’s al Ghul (formerly played by Liam Neeson) would factor into the story somehow. In fact, it was previously confirmed that actor Josh Pence is playing a young version of Ra’s al Ghul in TDKR, who will be glimpsed in flashback. That news has led to much rumor, not the least of which has been that Batman will battle The League of Shadows once again, and that Marion Cotillard’s character, “Miranda Tate,” is actually an alias meant to cover her true identity: Ra’s’ daughter, Talia al Ghul.

In all that rumor, there has been one aspect of the Ra’s al Ghul mythos that no one expected to be included in the film: the Lazarus Pits. Fans of the comics already know that one of Ra’s’ trademarks are the pits, whose mystical waters are periodically used to rejuvenate the diabolical villain, in order to keep him from aging and dying. The pits have played major parts in many pivotal Batman comic storylines both old and new, but again, they always seemed too out of step with Nolan’s films to be included in Dark Knight Rises.

Now the following set photos from India are casting a shadow of doubt on that assumption:

The big question is: what is that hole in the ground – marked with a green-screen background where CGI effects will later be added - supposed to represent? The Lazarus Pit is the popular speculation running rampant around the Internet, and clearly  there are enough dangling clues to suggest that it could fit into the film’s storyline. The only counter-argument to the theory is that Lazarus Pits and Ra’s al Ghul coming back from the dead (or other characters being resurrected) are way too weird for a Nolan bat-film. On the other hand, Batman Begins had a microwave laser and a tank that could jump roofs…so where does one draw the line?

We don’t have any answers on this one, so let’s discuss in the comments: Do you think Nolan is bold enough to incorporate the Lazarus Pits into his story? And would the pit’s inclusion mean that Neeson could come back as Ra’s al Ghul? Let’s discuss.

The Dark Knight Rises in theaters on July 20, 2012.

Sources:  Guatam Valluri & Dark Knight Rises Community via Coming Soon

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  1. its way too early to start speculating on what that may be it could literally be ANYTHING.

    • yh

  2. Will you guys please stop with these set photos? You’re spoiling it.

    • Then stop reading articles that say they have SET PHOTOS in them!!

  3. How many of you guys remember seeing X-Men 3 and wondering WTF is wrong with this picture and the Directors on X-Men 3, for the matter(KILLING OFF MAIN CHARACTERS ACCOMPLISHED WHAT? NOTHING… IT JUST MADE IT HARDER TO COME UP WITH AN X MEN PART4 THUS A NEW PREQUEL IS BORN) I am hoping that Chris Nolan isn’t planning on doing this to Christian Bale’s Batman because while on the website I read that “Warner Bros. president Jeff Robinov’s recent announcement that a Justice League movie was in the works and would open a year after Christopher Nolan’s third Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises, opens in 2012. However, since Nolan has admitted that The Dark Knight Rises will be his final installment in the franchise, Robinov stated that the studio will have to “reinvent Batman” under Nolan’s producing supervision.”

    Read more about Christopher Nolan News Interviews Blog by

  4. Jesus, I remember the incessant speculation surrounding TDK and now here we go again..It’s a BAD photo of a hole with a green tarp..YEAH!!Is this really newsworthy? And before I get creamed here it is a legitimate question..

    • GK,

      It’s something to talk about, dude. People like to chat about upcoming movies, speculate and throw out scenarios.


      • @Vic, That’s why he’s here on this forum. It is news worthy, otherwise he wouldn’t have even entered it. No offense GK. Like me for example with most of the X-Men First Class stuff, I don’t even bother to enter and rant on those anymore because I have no interest in X-Men First Class and I have ranted about it enough before and when they first started out. Now I don’t even bother to enter foX-Men Frick Class forums.

        • None taken .. IMO this is not news..I am very interested in TDKR and I will read all information on this site in relation to it but it does not necessarily mean that the news is pertinent or any great value..and for the record I think Kofi is a fantastic writer but this is not really newsworthy as I have stated..


  5. Its probably just going to be some kind of deep hole that batman is going to have to jump down or something.

  6. Remember the special features from Begins. They mention Talia and the Pits. Not conclusive by any means but the seed has been there for years. And I’ve suspected that the Lazarus Pit provides the perfect opportunity to open up Nolan’s Batman to the more fantastic elements of the DCU. Again, not conclusive, but again, the potential has been there from the start.

  7. @ denis25
    i read that on movie moron web along time ago.
    that gives a chance to see to the other villains, Nolan wouldn’t normally use.
    that means penguin, Mr. freeze, Man-Bat , crock, clayface, black mask, could be in it.
    they have to reboot batman in a more fantasy world to fit into a Justice League world.
    i think its more understandable then zack shnyder rebooting superman which made me loose all faith in him.
    i think thats a waist of $$$, potential. i was expecting Doomsday, Brainiac. or his ugly twin forgot his name…
    nevr really was a superman person. all movies were crap. first captain america was better then all supes films.

  8. Yea, I want to believe it’s a Lazarus pit, but I still don’t know. Matter of fact, I actually called it once the set photos of India came out. The only reason Im not shouting from the rooftops I KNEW IT! Is becuz the Lazarus pits are hidden

  9. I don’t think Nolan is going to introduce a magical element at this late stage, or ever. The whole world he’s built has taken pains to explain everything in somewhat realistic terms. But it is perfectly realistic that people might believe in a Lazarus pit.

    If it is the Lazarus pit, it will probably be used to explain Talia al Ghul’s state of mind. The pit might be something that the young Al Ghul believed in (that it would give him immortality). But maybe the “immortality” wasn’t about his body, but more in the line with his ideas and mission living on. This could set up flashbacks in which he is raising Talia and inundating and brainwashing her with his beliefs and purpose, so that he “lives on” through her.

    Batman is a lot about “purpose” and most of the characters in both Nolan BM films have been given some explanation or motivation for why they do what they do. Bruce obviously, but even the supporting characters, and particularly the villains.

  10. I wonder how much the pits will be involved in the film. I didn’t think Nolan would go that route with the way his films are intended.

  11. Nolan does like weirdness in his movies with sci fi elements, Prestige, Memento, Inception, all had a cool sci fi/fantasy element in them so maybe it could be the pit. He’s done way out there elements before….Inception, and made it believable. So i could see him going for the come back from the dead angle/plot device

  12. The Joker’s “The Greatest Joker Stories ever told” the Movie featuring three different actors to play the Joker with three different approaches to the character.

  13. I’ll believe it when Liam Neeson joins the cast. Someone has to go in before Josh Pence can come out.

  14. Inda is right, Nolan is certainly not adverse to doing things that are a bit out there. In fact, I was thinking of The Prestige just before I read that post. For crying out loud, in his attempt to build a teleporter(!) Tesla instead builds a replicator(!!). Different movies, but it does illustrate the point that Nolan won’t necessarily shy away from the pits. Then again, as someone else pointed out, there is a certain necessary cast member who hasn’t signed on yet. As far as we know. That doesn’t mean much either though. We didn’t know for sure that Weaving would be back as Elrond until Jackson updated from the set of The Hobbit. Apparently Hollywood can still keep a secret or two.

  15. Looks like green screen to me. to create a “pit” perhaps?

    • That, may be the most astounding assumption ever. Congrats. you read the title.

  16. its amazing what people can conjure up from this – bane’s poison reserve, poison ivy’s natural spring, the riddler’s dot of his question mark. My money’s on it being a green screen too though. whoever batman meets there will kick him in shouting THIS..IS..NOT GOTHAM! other than that, i got nothin.. i dont know how he young ras al ghul, talia, and this likely pit can connect. maybe by jumping into the supposed pool/pit, miranda tate will be awoken with immortal knowledge of her father that she finds out about by looking at his history when he was young and first stumbled across the pit..
    just hope the pits dont stink *shakes head in shame*

  17. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Lazarus Pit is used by Talia to heal Bruce/Batman after Bane puts the smack down on him and breaks his back.

    The young Ras character will likely be in a flashback sequence when Talia is telling Bruce/Batman about the Lazarus Pit and how Ras used it over the years to retain his youth and heal from injuries.

    The healing baths in “Wanted” weren’t entirely unbelievable??

    Odds are, unless Ras’s injuries were not as bad as we were led to believe, I wouldn’t hold out hope for a return of the character, Lazarus Pit or not.

    • WOW. That makes absolute sense!! Hmmm… I think you should have written the script… or did you??! I cant wait to see if youre right!

    • All the things you’ve suggested sound extremely likely. I’ve been a batman fan all my life, and i’ve been fortelling the return of Ras Al Ghul ever since he was the confirmned villain in Batman Begins. And then when I saw the movie, I was convinced he would be back before Nolan called it quits. The whole train crah thing where he closed his eyes and meditated (or whatever the hell he was doing?!)just wasn’t convincing enough for me. I felt like it was too convienient. I was sure he would show up in the backround or something all bandaged up at the end of Dark Knight, but it’s a good idea that Nolan gave the character a movie inbetween to breathe. It should work out better for the movie that way.

    • Those were my thoughts too, and although I’m not a die-hard comic book reader, I AM a die-hard film fan. Knowing Nolan, the Lazarus Pit will obviously be tied to realistic healing in some way. I also believe that Ras is dead, but his daughter might want to take up his mantle in a different, more positive way when she learns about all the killing he’s done. Her first act may be to help Bruce heal, but this also requires him telling her his true identity at some point. Who knows, but she’s in the movie for a reason and I’m sure it’s for some plot device like this.

      And also, if Nolan filmed in such a mystical and spiritual location (I’ve actual been there) to India, then it’s to set up this kind of a thing. I also think Bruce is the one doing the pushups in the teaser with a full beard, a little reminiscent of Rocky IV when Stallone trains hard to fight Drago. Wayne is probably rehabbing after spending time in the Lazarus Pit. And he obviously will have to keep a low profile, what better place to train then in India. As much as I love Robin, I don’t want to see him in this. These movies have been about Bruce alone and I like it that way. I really hope that Batman is the one to come back, fight Bane a second time, defeat him and retake Gotham and then leave it in good hands. End of series…awesome! (or so I hope). Nolan can’t and won’t screw it up whichever way he decides to go.

  18. Those photos doesn’t mean that they are a Lazarus PIT, it could be the green screen for a Batcave hole in the surface, they can put whatever they want in those green screens. Perhaps it is a Lazarus Pit, it could mean the introduction of some fantastic elements in the Batman universe continuity, even when Nolan wont be the Director no more.
    It would be really cool if it is a Lazarus Pit though!!!!

    • Those photos doesn’t mean that its a Lazarus PIT, it could be the green screen for a Batcave hole in the surface, they can put whatever they want in those green screens. Perhaps it is a Lazarus Pit, it could mean the introduction of some fantastic elements in the Batman universe continuity, even when Nolan wont be the Director no more.
      It would be really cool if it is a Lazarus Pit though!!!!

  19. I honestly don’t know how Christopher Nolan could make a Lazarus Pit work in his realistic Batman world. I do believe that this is a Lazarus Pit as a plot device for the origin of Bane, and it could play a factor in other parts of the movie. My only question is how he’d make something that is so unrealistic work in this Batman world. It’ll be interesting to see…

  20. I think the movie would be better off without the Lazarus pit, we could do without it, and maybe without Ra’as also, if any rumors are true, Nolan should make at least one more Batman movie after this one.


  22. Even if the hole is the Lazarus Pits it doesn’t have to be a literal fountain of youth. Maybe it’s just a pit that the League of Shadows uses in some ritual or something.

  23. personally i think the lazarus pit is too supernatural to be included in nolan’s films. it would detract from everything he has attempted to create with the whole realistic vibe. that said, who knows what will happen!

  24. My friend was an extra in a scene for the movie in Pittsburgh. Bane appears on the football field during a Steeler’s game in some sort of silver ball. Also, there is an appearance of the old bat mobile from the first one (the camouflage one).

    • additionally, the entire football field is suppose to be destroyed leaving only a small patch of the land left. There were pictures she showed me from the set that had circular areas of green screen.

  25. IF it is a Lazarus pit of some kind and not just a green screen could be that it is used in some way as a resource for Banes venom much similar to the blue flower that was used for Scarecrows fear inducing toxin in Batman Begins

  26. Those are definitely the Laz Pits. The reason why it is green is because of CGI.

    Bane breaks Batman’s back, similar to the Knightfall storyline, and he must enter the Laz Pits to recover and ultimately defeat Bane in a rematch.

    That is why Talia al Ghul is in the movie, to bring Batman into the Laz Pits when Bane does break his back in their first battle.

    Wow, this movie is going to be EPIC. Batman, being revived in the Lazarus Pits, defeating Bane in an EPIC battle to end the Nolan trilogy. I can’t EFFING wait.

    • Haha it’s funny how right/wrong you were.

  27. Let’s hope it’s Talia in the film, despite recent news. I was/still am against seeing Catwoman again in the film. Anxious to see how this film will conclude the franchise.