What Will Batman 3 Be About?

Published 5 years ago by , Updated August 2nd, 2009 at 1:50 pm,

batman 3 question mark logo 1 What Will Batman 3 Be About?

In the last month or so, there have been rumblings that Batman Begins and The Dark Knight director Chris Nolan might not return to finish off the bat-trilogy many had assumed he would be a part of until the end. Nolan himself has said in the past that it would take one hell of a strong story and excellent script to lure him back to Gotham City after the crowning achievement (and arduous labor) that was The Dark Knight.

David S. Goyer, story writer of Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, has been a little more glib about the progress of Batman 3 (as it’s being called), telling a crowd at Comic-Con that “Bat-musings” were currently in the works.

As writers wrack their brains, and directors question if there is any creative juice left in the tank, and all this drama unfolds before the inevitable and unstoppable release of the next Bat-sequel, I find myself wondering: At this point, is the plot of Batman 3 really that much of a mystery?

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BATMAN BEGINS / BATMAN: YEAR ONE

batman year one What Will Batman 3 Be About?

If viewers haven’t yet put the pieces together, some of the core storylines for Nolan’s Batman films have each found their inspiration in a famous Batman comic book storyline. Much of Batman Begins‘ take on Bruce Wayne’s early attempts to become the caped crusader was inspired by Frank Miller (Sin City, 300) and David Mazzucchelli’s “Year One” storyline, which first appeared in the pages of DC Comics’ Batman series (issues #404-407) in 1987. A re-imagining of Batman’s formative year, “Year One” was so popular that it was later reissued as the graphic novel Batman: Year One, which is still one of the most popular and enduring Batman stories to date.

Besides borrowing the “Bruce Wayne becoming Batman” storyline from Year One, Batman Begins similarly highlighted Carmine Falcone’s reign as crime-king of Gotham; Batman and (then) Lt. Gordon’s tenuous initial relationship; Gordon’s struggle to be a good cop in a corrupt department; and of course, the scene where Batman evades police by using a sonic transmitter in his boot to summon an army of bats.

Of course, Batman Begins had to also provide moviegoers with blockbuster thrills like a high speed rooftop chase and a (tacked-on?) third-act showdown with Ra’s al Ghul – but strip these big-budget spectacles away and much of what is left is purely Miller’s Year One. And, IMHO, Nolan’s film was better for the borrowing.

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THE DARK KNIGHT / THE LONG HALLOWEEN

harvey dent gordon batman What Will Batman 3 Be About?

Almost a decade after Frank Miller envisioned The Dark Knight’s early days, Jeph Loeb (Heroes) and artist Tim Sale decided to jump back into the Year One sandbox with a new installment of early Batman called The Long Halloween. Published between 1996 and 1997, The Long Halloween picked up right where Year One left off (starting to get the picture?), as Batman, Commissioner Gordon and a new “golden boy” D.A. known as Harvey Dent tried to eradicate the last remnants of the Falcone crime family. All goes well until a mysterious serial killer known as “Holiday” starts picking off members off the mob on each and every major holiday of the year. Like Year One, The Long Halloween was reissued as a graphic novel and is still one of most popular Batman stories there is.

While the whole “Holiday Killer” plotline might’ve been jettisoned, you surely recognize the Batman / Gordon / Harvey Dent triangle as the underlying basis for The Dark Knight. Other echoes of Long Halloween that made it into Nolan’s bat-sequel: the character of underboss Sal Maroni (Eric Roberts); the notion of “escalation” (i.e., Batman inspiring costumed villains); Harvey Dent maimed into Two-Face as punishment for going after the mob; that (tacked-on?) third act where Two-Face seeks vengeance on Batman and Gordon; and of course, the whole “I believe in Harvey Dent” slogan, which is the chilling (and revealing) final line of The Long Halloween.

Now, before I get lambasted: David S. Goyer and Chris and Jonathan Nolan all did exemplary jobs re-fitting the storylines of Year One and The Long Halloween for two awesome blockbuster films. No doubt, no argument. However, it’s undeniable that a considerable amounts of both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight had been envisioned (tested and proven) long before the filmmakers sat down to hammer out those scripts. The Nolans and Goyer simply recognized good storytelling when they saw it and decided to build on a strong foundation.

So now, we again find ourselves faced with the question: What should Batman 3 be about?

Well, lucky for us all, the answer, as they say, is written:

Continue reading ‘What Should Batman 3 Be About?’

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TAGS: the dark knight, the dark knight rises

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  1. I meant hamill not conroy…. Hopefully dodged a bullet there!

  2. The issue with Routh’s Superman is that there really isn’t a way we can tell if he was a good Superman or not since the people who wrote that movie gave him a total of like 3 lines in the entire movie… The movie failed mainly in the writing department. Lex Luthor’s plan didn’t make any sense at all, the “coolest” scene was the airplane scene which, if you think about it didn’t really make much sense either. Sure he stopped the fuselage from crashing into the stadium, but what about the rest of the airplane that was ripped off or broken off???

    Anywho, I don’t see how some rock growing in the ocean was going to get Lex Luthor anywhere. I didn’t see any advanced technology or any advanced weapons growing, just barron rock. Even if it took over America, all the American government had to do to take it over from Lex was to send in one squad of troops, or if they’re REALLY lazy just fire a single missile at them, and then the land is theirs.

    I personally wouldn’t mind Lex Luthor as the villain as long as he’s an evil genius. I actually like the idea that a mortal man can come up with some plan that can possibly take down Superman. They could involve some super-villains, just have Lex Luthor behind the scenes pulling the strings. So Superman can confront Lex Luthor but can’t really touch him. Having him a respected, seemingly legitimate, businessman could complicate things for Superman instead of making him some idiot criminal like he was in Superman Returns. That is something the cartoons and Smallville did get right about Lex Luthor in my opinion.

    About Bale dropping out if Nolan drops out, I think I remember Bale saying in an interview that he would continue even if Nolan doesn’t. I know I’ll get flak for saying this, but I honestly wouldn’t mind someone else taking over as long as they are also qualified as Chris Nolan is. So no diss to Nolan, but he doesn’t have some magic touch that nobody else can replicate, only James Cameron has that, lol.

    I think a Martin Campbell directed Batman movie would be pretty bad ass. He seems to have a knack for the troubled individual hero taking on overwhelming odds thing down. His two James Bond films are the best ones in my opinion, and James Bond is not so different from Batman, except Batman is far more serious. But they are both troubled individuals that fight against overwhelming odds alone using their cunning and technology. And I think there is one thing Martin Campbell appears to do better than Nolan is direct great fight scenes. The fighting in Casino Royale was brutal. That’s something you don’t see as much in Batman Begins or The Dark Knight. But out of the two (BB or TDK), I prefer Batman Begins in terms of fighting. While also unrealistic, at least it fit better in the Batman universe, taking out enemies one by one without the others knowing. In TDK, I found the fighting pretty cheesy and the beginning with him landing on the van’s roof without breaking his own legs and the van magically comes to a stop as if crushing the roof applies the emergency brakes or something, that was pretty dumb… So I would say either keep the fighting like in Batman Begins, or if he’s not going to be stealthy, make the fighting brutal and realistic.

    And the one thing I liked about Batman Begins that most would say is very out of character for Batman, was that he was willing to let the villain die at the end, lol. But yah, they probably shouldn’t repeat that because that’s out of character for Batman, but I personally don’t mind, I personally like The Punisher and Iron Man because they keep it simple, just kill them, lol, but yah, both Marvel, not DC, I know…

  3. @ Jago
    To be Honest i kinda liked The Batman animated series but Bruce Timm’s Batman: TAS will always be my favorite. Mainly what i didnt like about The Batman show was the character designs of the villains who looked too freakish. Except for Catwoman & Firefly, They all just didnt seem to be takin seriously. Joker’s design was the most disturbing. They did do a pretty good job on the justice league though. As for Batman: Brave & the Bold, that show was way too much for me. The makers did mentioned before how that show was more for little kids instead of grown-up fans. Batman:TAS had everything i liked about the show. The show’s setting, characters of both our hero, supporting characters and villains. And episodes featuring characters from the comics being shown like DR. Lesley Thompkins, Tony Zucco who murdered Robin’s parents, the telling of Crime Alley where Bruce lost his parents etc. I agree Mark Hamill’s voice and laugh is much better than Heath ledger’s and Jack Nicolson. It would be nice to see Bruce Timm continue with Superman:TAS and picking up where Legacy parts 1&2 left off with Superman gaining back the trust of the people cause Bruce Timm brought that up before. Or they could make a new justice league series that follows Justice League: The New Frontier.

  4. @ Ken J
    Yea, it all seemed like Bryan Singer was in a weird way tryin to do a remake to Richard Donnor’s film. I know for a fact that things that happend were all too similar to the original except for Spacey’s Lex being more serious Hackman’s. Who knows what happend to the rest of plane. most likely it might of landed somewhere no-one was around. Like most movies it would be just a hole no-one would care to think about while watchin. Superman is only one man and cant be two places at once. i bet those pieces crashed on the ground just as Superman landed the plane and made sure everyone was alright. Im not worried about Nolan, TDK was a cash cow for him, how could anyone just walk away so easy after makin a film like that? Tim Burton isnt into makin sequels and they got him to direct Batman Returns. As for Bale returning or not, well time will tell. Aslong as the next guy to play batman isnt like George Clooney,lol. Ken, if you ask me, id like to see WB ask Bruce Timm to write and direct live action films for both Batman And Superman. I know that it probly wont happen but just a thought. I agree with ya about Batman begins Ken. After all in the comics Batman was willing to kill villains especially if he had no choice. Thats what they did in most of the previous Batman franchise that Burton started aswell as the animated series Bruce Timm made. The only villain i recall Batman killing in a animated series was Devilray in JLU when possessed by Deadman. The one thing i hated about Nolan’s Batman is his voice while being Batman. Micheal Keaton talked as two different people in Batman and Batman Returns and you could tell the differerance and wasnt over done. Val Kilmer and George Clooney on the otherhand didnt seems to change their voice while being Batman. TDK was good with the action but i thought outta all the batman films ive seen it had the worst ending by killing Two-Face. I liked The Punisher w/ Thomas Jane but not the newest one as much. Iron Man was awesome and cant wait for the 2nd to come out. I wrote enough for now,lol.

  5. @Jago:
    I didn’t see much of the Batman, but TAS was pretty epic. Hollywood would do well to follow its suit on many levels.

    @KenJ
    The only problem with Routh’s Superman, was that they hired him to portray Christopher Reeve portraying Superman.
    About Batman, I agree that Martin would indeed do better fight scenes (TDK lagged badly, even to the point where I skip the first Batman scene). And he would doubtless portray Batman’s underrated ability to travel on foot, climb buildings, steal around, etc. in ways that Nolan overlooks. The Batmobile has actually been OVERplayed in the movies, IMO.
    I like that Nolan has given the fresh look, and my only complaint about the current “realistic” (yeah right) series is that it likely won’t feature Batman vs. Superman. I actually got a bit excited watching I Am Legend, when I saw the ad… I thought it was meant as a subtle real-world advertisement (to my endless shame).

  6. @ Jago
    If i knew what site to go to to inform what a good idea would be for Bruce Timm and his pals to write and direct movies, i would inform WB sor sure. Especially if they had him make movies of both Batman & Superman and have they them in the universe. It would be a great start to a new franchise of DC hero films like Marvel has done. I dont why but i was watchin Friday the 13 part 7 and i thought that the male survivor looked more like Christopher Reeve than Brandon Routh did. I miss the Batmobile from the 1989 film,lol. Especially how Batman loses its side benders in Batman Returns to go thru between two narrow buildings to escape the cops. I thought Batman Begins Batmobile’s chase was better than TDK. And i know what you mean about them makin a Batman VS. Superman film. Id like to see them fight each other then team up as the world’s finest. Guess they couldnt get the right director or story though so we gotta wait till they reboot Batman again for that kind of a film to happen. Well, gonna go watch my X-men Origins: Wolverine dvd. see ya!

  7. Dont care but part of the movie needs to address his detective skills maybe tracking down a serial killer. They need to show how he multi tasks and that he does just go after the flavor of the month.

    I loved the part where he took the time to do forensics on the bullet hole.

    Id like to see them step it up a notch and show people why he is also known as the Dark Knight Detective. Maybe show him after he left the tutelage of Mr. Ghul he spent some time with other people to hone his skills in other fields not just being quiet and beating the snot out of people.

  8. I wonder if Nolan will show us the batcave where Batman does all his knowlege of things at. Im hoping we also see new villains that havnt already been on film yet instead of using the same ones from the previous franchise., Arent reboots supposed be more like that anyways?

  9. @Simon

    Wow, thanks for pointing out the thing about the batmobile, you’re completely right and can’t believe I didn’t notice that. Typically he uses the batmobile just to get him to the scene, then he does all of his fighting, and even pursuits to a degree on foot and by air (gliding, swinging and what-not).

    About a Batman/Superman movie, let’s not bite off more than we can chew, we haven’t even found the right Superman yet, let’s not try to mix him with Batman just yet… I liked the animated movie a bit, the part where Batman throws Superman around because he’s holding a sliver of kryptonite was great. Classic show of how Batman uses his brains to overcome someone else’s might…

    @chrisj

    Yah, it’s never a good thing when an actor is expected to play another actor. Look at The Dark Knight for example. Maggie Gyllenhaal wasn’t playing Rachel Dawes, she was trying to play Katie Holmes playing Rachel Dawes. Maggie Gyllenhaal (yes, I’m copying and pasting from imdb, only reason I get it spelled correctly, lol) is 10 times the actress Katie Holmes is, but that was a very poor performance and it’s because she was trying to be someone else being someone else… I don’t really like most of the movies she’s in, but don’t have a problem with her acting.

    As far as Punisher goes, I’m backwards from your opinion. Well half-half. I personally liked Ray Stevenson as Frank Castle/The Punisher and though Tom Jane didn’t look a thing like him, but agree that Warzone was a very poorly made movie, worse than some straight-to-DVD movies I’ve seen… But in my opinion was of no fault of Stevenson, which I thought was great. I didn’t like Tom Jane’s Punisher either, thought it was WAY too boring. Out of the two I actually enjoyed Warzone more despite how crappy it was. The villains were HORRIBLE, especially Looney Bin Jim…

  10. @Aknot

    Definitely, his detective skills is something Nolan keeps neglecting. That one cop-out scene in TDK was a pretty poor attempt at it…

  11. @ Ken J
    I was torn between the two Punishers. Both ahd somthing the other didnt. I agree that Ray Stevenson looked more like the character but i liked how Thomas Jane’s was as to be human, you know being injured physically and emotionally etc. Plus he wasnt wearing a bullet proof vest till the climax of the film. Ray stevenson was the only good cast member of Warzone. But one thing for sure is both were better than Dolph Lundgren’s Punisher film. Is just me or does it seem like Nolan will leave out the whole Batcave outta the next film etc?

  12. @Aknot
    I agree completely. How does Bruce maintain a Batman physique, intellect, and technical proficiency, while maintaining the charade that is Bruce Wayne? How does he stay on top of forensic science, and how does this affect his work? Where does he get those wonderful toys? (Yeah, yeah; I just couldn’t resist.)
    This is another aspect where the Animated Series shined so brightly. They approached tacky a couple of times in TDK with the cell phone imaging, Spider-Man traveling, and bullet reconstruction.

  13. @chrisj

    I’m with you there, I also think Stevenson was the only good person in that movie. But the body armor is actually one of the things I loved the most. It makes sense doesn’t it? He is a former miltiary-man (Marines right?) fighting a war. They wear armor in war, so why not now? I know if I were to take on some persona like that I would definitely wear body armor. Would be pretty dumb not to…

    I liked everything about the CHARACTER Punisher in Warzone. I liked the actor, I liked the faded logo, I liked his body armor, I liked his overall outfit, I even liked how he handled his weapons most of the time.

    But everything else was crap. I don’t get how they can get something so right then get everything else so wrong…

    But if you ever hear people complain about how so-and-so actor isn’t big enough to play the comic character, here was the closest we have to one that actually looks right. Ray Stevenson is a pretty imposing dude. When he crushes a guy’s head by punching it against a wall, I believed it, when he picked up another and broke the wall with him, I believed it. Thomas Jane… not so much… WAY too skinny in my opinion. Looks more like a marathon runner than the comic’s Frank Castle. I was saying in another thread that Tom Jane has the right look for a comic book character, not Punisher, but maybe Cpt. America, but not the physique. But I’m sure he could bulk up with the hollywood budget and the spare time an actor must have between films…

  14. @ Ken J
    All i was sayin was how the punisher was in the comics without the bullet proof vest cause he was heavily skilled with guns and knows the risks that comes with the job. But i see you point cause its a live action film, and i could see why batman would wear armor himself in the films and like punisher he was very skilled crime fighter. Just about all heroes are like that especially when they make the ultimate sacrifice. It reminds me of bruce telling Terry in Batman Beyond he would offer one of his costumes that had, bullet holes, burns, torn gashes etc. just to talk Terry outta of doin what needed to be done when all he had was Nightwing’s mask & Batman’s utility belt. I thought Tom Jane looked like Frank Castle except for his height. But to me, aslong as the actor/actress pulls it off, thats all i care. Micheal Keaton was short but he pulled off Batman off quite well. Speaking of Batman, i Hope Nolan will show us the Batcave. I missed the days where Batman made his gadgets etc. in the batcave.

  15. Now, what’s wrong with the Batstorageunit?

  16. Batman is known to do all his best work in the dark, especially while uncovering a criminal’s background, adding new gadgets for his belt, his vehicles etc. Its one of his best quotes of himself sayin in the comics and shows. In TDK is didnt feel the same, felt just like any other normal lab lab people would be workin in.

  17. Dude Its Simple,Heath Ledger Wasnt The Greatest Actor Of All Time,So You Get Some One That Could Just As Good Or If Not Better Than Heath…Picture This Johnny Dep As The New Joker,Dep Is One Of The Greatest Actor’s Of Our Time Everything That He’s Taken On He’s Mastered,So What Makes You Think Johnny Wouldnt Do The Same if He Played Joker,Thats My Pick,Johny Dep As The Joker

  18. i think a serial killer that stays hidden and leaves riddles might be a cool story with the joker locked up and batman must get help from the joker to find this killer. bane would be a nice sub villain or killer croc,but riddler,and joker are musts.the mad hatter would make a really creepy villain as well. i just think that riddler and joker should be next they fit toghether perfect in this nolan film universe,and if riddler is just this serial killer type that would be awesome,the penuguin would be cool just as the new leader of the mob and not some freak of nature like the last film he was in. their are my thoughts.

  19. ohhhhh i dissagree johny would not be the perfect joker. but some one like ben foster would. he was a perfect killer and reminded me of a joker riddler type in the hostage with bruce willus. my pick is Ben Foster.

  20. Comment 434 lol
    I was watching king kong on abc but then realized the dark knight was on max. Wow what a difference! Just thought I’d mention it.

  21. @chrisj

    speaking of the batcave, he should have a “trophy room” or just have stuff from the villains he’s taken out or taken on displayed in the cave.

    And about Punisher, yes, I agree that acting is important, but I didn’t find anything wrong with Ray Stevenson’s acting, so I think between the two Stevenson wins hands down since he has the look, size, and acting chops to boot.

  22. @chris

    You’re absolutely right. Ben Foster would make a wonderful Joker. Actually, he might be able to pull it off better than anyone to date. (I personally think Mark Hamill’s Joker is the best I’ve ever seen, but the character can be done so many ways, it’s almost unfair to compare portrayals side by side.)

    @Jose

    It’s not really a question of whether someone can do the Joker as good as, or better than, Ledger. It’s a fact that it will bother a lot of people as to the question of tastefulness.
    I also see a point that Batman’s greatest villain should have a role in what we should only be able to expect to be Batman’s greatest film. However, from a critical standpoint (and remember, this isn’t comics; a very good story in the comics can appear just plain tacky on screen (Daredevil)) how the heck do you top the level of chaos that the Joker brought to TDK, and still make a relevant film, and not just a rehash? Rehashing would work fine for many superhero sequels. Not this one. TDK might not really have been as good as Batman Begins, but it did manage to become an epic movie, whereas BB was just a superhero movie.

  23. @simon

    We never really “seen” Mark Hammil’s Joker, just the voice, but I do like his character overall including the voice…

    “What a photo op, the city councilman and his wacky pal…” Man I love that exchange in Mask of the Phantasm.

    I’ve always really liked the fact that you can’t really tell just how dangerous he was until he just randomly kills someone. It’s too bad the cartoon was limited in what they can show, but Bruce Timm has said that everytime he uses his laughing toxin on someone, that’s actually meant that person will die from it, but it’s never shown beyond the guy laughing out of control since they were not allowed to so it was more implied for those who knew that the toxin was fatal. Younger kids never really understood that.

  24. I’m counting on you chrisj, we can’t let this thread die! lol

  25. @ Ken J
    Lol, I can only do so much Ken J. No Promises,lol. I too loved Mark Hamill’s work as the Joker’s voice aswell as his perfect laugh. His laugh was better than any actor on screen had. Not one episode was dull with Hamill’s Joker.I like him in Almost Got’em episode. Two-face: get outta my face clown. Joker: which one? lol other quotes. Joker: i gotta admit lady, you’re harder to kill than a cockroach on steriods,lol. And from Batman Beyond Return of the Joker, Joker: You know kids, alot has changed since your dear old uncle Joker has been away. New Gotham, new rules, even a new Batman. But im rested up and ready to give this old town a wedgie again. lol Joker: after all the batarangs etc, you’re just like a child cryin out for mommy and daddy. It would be funny if it wasnt so pathetic… Oh what the heck, ill laugh anyways. LOL Classic evil Joker for ya.

  26. WOW! What great insight, and what a great story idea! I’m impressed. I think they’d be hard pressed to come up with anything better than that; it works so well! Personally, I think one of the smartest things they’ve done is use comic-book storylines. Many of these truly define who the character is, and far more often than studios like to admit, it’s the case with superheroes. Comic books have some of the most talented writers out there!

  27. Well if it has already worked on one medium, no need to reinvent the wheel and make Galactus a cloud and Silver Surfer get his powers from his board… lol. Sorry, felt like picking on FF…

  28. @Ken J
    “I’ve always really liked the fact that you can’t really tell just how dangerous he was until he just randomly kills someone”

    Did you see the episode with the Joker’s answering machine? -I admit I had to look this up because it’s been years…

    Episode #036 – The Strange Secret of Bruce Wayne

    JOKER’S ANSWERING MACHINE: Aha ha ha ha ha! Boy, did you get the wrong number! Leave your name and number at the sound of the shriek.
    VOICE ON MACHINE: No, please! Don’t! Aurgh!

    F-ing fantastic, and really shows the Joker’s essence in a Y-14 sort of way (or whatever the TV rating was)

  29. @Panda

    LOL, that’s pretty funny stuff… I love the Animated Series Joker…