Rian Johnson Sounds Off On Potential ‘Batman’ Reboot

Published 2 years ago by

Batman Reboot Director Rian Johnson Rian Johnson Sounds Off On Potential Batman Reboot

Now that Christopher Nolan has completed his interpretation of the Batman mythology, DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. are likely in the process of rebooting the iconic anti-hero. Entrusting a task of that magnitude for the Justice League universe isn’t going to be easy, but as has become the case, debating what directors would be up to the challenge is inevitable.

After director Rian Johnson hit mainstream paydirt with Looper, some might see his writing talent making him a strong contender. But as Johnson explains, pressure to succeed isn’t the only concern for whoever ends up reinventing Batman on the big screen.

Johnson’s name being brought up in the discussion isn’t a total shock, given his recent success with frequent collaborator Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Levitt’s ties to the Batman franchise going forward are still tenuous at best, but his work alongside the proven writing and directing talent of Rian Johnson is as close to an inside-track as we’ve seen so far.

While fans might organize parades or online petitions to give their favorite directors a chance to bring a superhero to life, ultimately, it’s not their call to make. As Johnson explains, the person who inks the deal can’t let mere excitement inform the decision.

Speaking with FlickeringMyth, Johnson praised past depictions of Batman, but isn’t ready to jump head-first into WB’s plans, should the opportunity arise:

“I like that hypothetical. You know, I love Batman, I didn’t grow up reading the comics but ‘Batman’ movies, when that first Tim Burton ‘Batman’ movie came out that kind of defined, in kind of like a weird way for the generation that I was in, that first ‘Batman’ movie in a way it defined what a blockbuster was for me, more so than any of the 70s movies. When that first ‘Batman’ movie hit it was like this cultural volcano that defined what the superhero blockbuster was in a way that was just completely drew me in as a kid. So ‘Batman’ is definitely the one superhero movie franchise that I’m 100% just completely in love with, and I love [Christopher] Nolan’s so much man. Right now I’m just focusing on doing my own thing. And that hypothetical that you mentioned has so many variables to it in terms of what kind of movie they’re looking to make and all of that so, you know, that call hasn’t happened and in the meanwhile I’m not gonna sit by the phone, I’m just gonna keep writing my own stuff.”

Rian Johnson Joseph Gordon Levitt Looper Rian Johnson Sounds Off On Potential Batman Reboot

It isn’t hard to see what Johnson’s comments are alluding to, since the restrictions placed on Joss Whedon’s Avengers by Marvel are fairly well-known. Johnson, like Whedon, is lauded for both his writing and directing abilities, so the opportunity to tell a story with a tone, cast, or plot dictated by the studio – life-changing as it might be – may not automatically be seen as a dream job. Especially when the attention garnered by his indie-minded Looper has opened doors; walking onto a controlled set seems to be a move in the opposite direction.

Of course, all that is assuming Warner Bros. has as rigid a plan for a shared Justice League movie universe as Marvel. If reports prove true and Batman is being rebooted in JL, then the direction the caped crusader will take in the future is even less clear. There are already rumors of WB starting to reshape Man of Steel to hint at a larger universe, and if that’s the case, the director entrusted with Justice League could set an even narrower path for those to follow.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it won’t be the kind of environment most likely to attract independent writer/directors like Rian Johnson (and possibly why Marvel hasn’t used ‘Phase One’ success to hire nothing but top-tier directors with serious industry clout). Now that comic book fans have not one, but potentially two movie universes to watch, it’ll be increasingly interesting to see which directors wish to take part, and who simply passes.

Avengers Justice League Solo Films Rian Johnson Sounds Off On Potential Batman Reboot

What do you think of Rian Johnson’s style being used to tell a Batman story? Is that the kind of change you feel DC needs to make in order to distinguish itself, or is it just too far away from what it needs to be successful? Sound off in the comments.


Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Flickering Myth [via CBM]

TAGS: Batman
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  1. Am I the only one who wants the Batman ‘reboot’ to continue on from the end of the Nolan trilogy?
    I know it would never happen but Id love to see it continue with JGL.

    • I had a feeling, espescially with “The Bat”, that they were going to lead into a Batman Beyond series where John Blake would fill in as a Terry McGinnis role as the new Dark Knight and how Gotham would evolve slowly into a more futuristic environment

      Or Nightwing, that fits because Blake is a cop

    • Yea it wouod be stupid if they didnt wait untill justice league came out that way we get to know the new face of batman and we wont want to compare if to the TDK version that most of us love

  2. If D.C. is smart then they won’t paint themselves into a corner by introducing too much of Batman in the Justice League film. This would give whoever directs the re-boot a lot of breathing room for creativity. Also the Justice League members need to have limits, more vulnerabilities for their enemies to take advantage of, for ex. maybe Superman isn’t as strong in the dark because he needs sunlight for strength (energy). Otherwise who would think they could ever lose.

    • Keep him behind the cowl for JL. That would be cool.

  3. i wanna another Burton Batman !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Man, they don’t even let the body stop twitching before they are cutting it up for parts these days. The Dark Knight Rises isn’t even on DVD yet and they are talking this up. Batman is very popular, but Warner/DC (and Marvel) need to pull back on the throttle or they are going to burn this little money train out.

  5. I agree with the a spin-off movie with jgl as robin/nightwing movie sounds better then a another batman-reboot…..sigh, and i would not mind a anne hathaway back as catwoman in a solo movie and maybe a cameo of christian bale

  6. As for rebooting Batman, he needs to be more supernatural/gothic/surreal to differentiate itself from Nolan’s take but still keep with the grim and gritty vibe that’s popular nowadays. A good example of this would be Gotham Knight’s “In Darkness Dwells” short that was very reminiscent of Mike Mignola’s artstyle and the comic version of Batman.

    A more “super” Batman would feel more on par when he’s next to the likes of Flash, Wonder Woman and Superman.

  7. no no no no no no no no no no just leave the series alone if you have to “reboot” it just pick up with joseph and have him be the new bat man

  8. How about giving Sandy Collora a chance. Can someone here enlighten me why Holly is not giving Collora a chance? His Batman Dead end is very good.

    • From all the Batman fan made films Dead End does stick out.But when it comes to Hollywood I couldn’t tell you why they make the decisions they make.In the end the powers that be in Hollywood do whatever they believe is best for their business.I think when it comes to the creative process people like Sandy Collora have that edge and could really contribute.But Hollywood looks at that very differently.

  9. How about giving Sandy Collora a chance. Can someone here enlighten me why Hollywood is not giving Collora a chance? His Batman Dead end is very good.

  10. John Blake is not in the JL Bruce Wayne is so lets move forard with JL and Bruce Wayne as Batman.

  11. I could see a reboot happen after JL seeing how Nolans batman didn’t really leave alot of room for “superpowers” and reboot could do that and fit into a JL universe nicely Nolans Batman wouldn’t do that and John Black Dick Grayson Nightwing Robin (what ever you want to call him) Is not in justice league and it would be dumb to put him in there.

  12. Bring on a new Batman I say, I loved the TDK trilogy but that’s the beauty of Batman, there’s many different ways you can play him, I would love to see a Batman beyond in the future sometime, with Gothem like the city from Bladerunner, or even a “Batman No Mans Land” would be epic, but i cant see them doing that unfortunatly, we don’t need another Nolan style down to earth Batman either, that was his take on Batman and it was brilliant dont get me wrong but it’s time for something fresh, and I also think they need to pick people that will stay the coarse and continue as long as they can, none of this I’m only making 3 then leaving rubbish, Nolan could have kept going with that franchise which kind of frustrates me, how can u ditch Batman?! Anyway I hope the next director is passionate about the Batman and wants to make more than just a trilogy, same for whoever plays the new Batman, and I want to see more of the Detective side to Batman as well, he also has to be bigger than bale!

  13. I am one of the few who didnt think Nolans trilogy was all that spectacular. Dont get me wrong, good set of films and decent enough story (if not a tad rushed and predictable at times) but it just didnt feel like Batman. I didnt much care for the overly “real” approach. So in saying that I am all too happy for reboot plans to be moving forward.

    Personally, post JL, I would like a movie to focus less on Bruce Wayne and more on Bats. DEFINITELY skip the origin story. It may be too difficult but I would really like a loose adaptation of the first Arkham video game.

    • Yes,a loose adaptation of Arkham Asylum would be nice.Although it will be difficult to translate the feel and experience of the video game into film.But perhaps they could make Batman act more like he was in Asylum and City.

  14. they create a big problem about nowhere popping each superheroes without solo movies.Superman,batman and green lantern had their own movies, but no wonder woman, flash, aquaman and etc. it is very difficult to wb studios to beat disney/paramount/marvel, the studios brought avengers with 1.5 billion world wide…. justice league will doom if they make a bad storylines, untalented director and a cast with chemistry. phase 1 of marvel cinematic universe was a success, now they have phase 2 then wait for phase 3. They know to plan well their movies… genius!

    • You have a point there.Although they could do what they did with The Watchmen The Final Cut.Include small animated adaptations of origin stories within the movie to give people an idea of who these heroes are.Or they could make it a two parter.Where in the first they introduce you more elaborately to the relatively new heroes and then in the second part focus on the story they want to tell.

  15. I think bringing Batman into a Justice League universe is a terrible idea. Batman doesn’t belong with other super heroes on film. It works in the comics, but I think it would cheapen Batman’s live action credibility.

    • No,I disagree.
      Go watch the Justice League animated features and you will see how pivotal Batman is.He doesn’t always have to be present or on screen but his spirit is undeniably present in The League.

  16. A Batman reboot is pointless. Of all the main DC characters, Batman’s origin has been the same. We don’t need to go through the same again. Instead, the new movie can pick up from Batman Begins, rendering TDK and TDKR as non-canonical.

  17. Why would you want to reboot the batman movies, its already been reboot, and last 3 films were great. No need to reboot, stop it already.

  18. Well, I JUST saw Looper. Jaw still on floor. Absolutely killer. This guy needs to helm a huge budget superhero flick. Batman or no, it doesn’t matter. I’d rather see THIS guy reboot the X Men.