‘Dark Knight Rises’: Christopher Nolan Talks Production, Timeline, & Bane

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christopher nolan the dark knight rises Dark Knight Rises: Christopher Nolan Talks Production, Timeline, & Bane

Post-production on The Dark Knight Rises has only just begun, but co-writer/director Christopher Nolan has been taking a “break” from the editing process of late to show off semi-complete footage of the film’s prologue to the press and answer journalists’ questions concerning his decision to feature Bane as the movie’s primary antagonist (though, rumors persist that another famous villain will also make an appearance in the Batman movie trilogy finale).

Today, we have some additional ruminations and “answers” from the filmmaker – touching on subjects such as his feelings about Dark Knight Rises being his (by all accounts) final Caped Crusader flick, when the film takes place, and even more insight into how Bane ended up being chosen as the Dark Knight’s ultimate foe.

Here is what Nolan told Hero Complex, with regards to his feelings about the completion of principal photography on The Dark Knight Rises:

“I tend not to be too emotional on the set, I find that doesn’t help me do my job. But you definitely get a little lump in your throat thinking that, ‘OK, this is going to be the last time we’re going to be doing this.’ It’s been quite a journey. Hopefully, reflecting that journey — by all of us who made the films — in the three films together will make it so they have a real span to them, some real heft.”

On the topic of “Bat-mania” and how obsessed many fans are with every artistic and thematic aspect of The Dark Knight Rises (see: the overabundance of fan-shot videos and pics of the production):

“It’s terrific, to have people that interested in something. It reminds you that it is a real honor to work on something that means so much to people. I’d love to be able to claim that I invented the whole thing and that’s why they’re interested. I did not. I’ve been given a very precious thing to do my best with, to look after and not to let people down. There’s a certain amount of fear that comes with it and intimidation but it’s also a great privilege. [As for the fans], they want it to be great, they want to go enjoy it and they’re fascinated by it. You know, there’s always controversy regarding things that people will disagree with but hopefully they appreciate the effort of trying to make something good.”

With regards to the decision to select Bane as Batman’s central nemesis in The Dark Knight Rises:

“I didn’t know [the Bane character] very well. [Co-writer] David Goyer got me a bunch of stuff on him and we looked into him. I only knew him by name, I wasn’t familiar with his back story. He’s a very cool character. And getting an actor like Tom [Hardy] to take it on, you know you’re going to get something very special. Tom is somebody who really knows how to put character into every gesture, every aspect of his physicality in the way that great actors can…

“With Bane, the physicality is the thing. With a good villain you need an archetype, you know, you need the extreme of some type of villainy. The Joker is obviously a particular archetype of diabolical, chaotic anarchy and has a devilish sense of humor. Bane, to me, is something we haven’t dealt with in the [Batman] films. We wanted to do something very different in this film. He’s a primarily physical villain, he’s a classic movie monster in a way — but with a terrific brain. I think he’s a fascinating character.  I think people are going to get a kick out of what we’ve done with him.”

Bane in The Dark Knight Rises1 Dark Knight Rises: Christopher Nolan Talks Production, Timeline, & Bane

Lastly, Nolan had the following insight to offer, with regards to why The Dark Knight Rises takes place several years after the events of The Dark Knight:

“It will make a lot more sense to people when they see the film. But it’s not a great mystery — it’s the jumping-off point for the film — but it’s hard for me to articulate it. I think the mood at the beginning of the film will make a lot of sense.

“If I had to express it thematically, I think what we’re saying is that for Batman and Commissioner Gordon, there’s a big sacrifice, a big compromise, at the end of the ‘The Dark Knight’ and for that to mean something, that sacrifice has to work and Gotham has to get better in a sense. They have to achieve something for the ending of that film — and the feeling at the end of that film — to have validity. Their sacrifice has to have meaning and it takes time to establish that and to show that, and that’s the primary reason we did that.

“It’s a time period that is not so far ahead that we would have to do crazy makeup or anything — which I think would be distracting — but it gave [the cast] something to get their teeth into, particularly Christian [Bale] in terms of [portraying] this guy [Bruce Wayne] who has been frozen in this moment in time with nowhere to go. He really has done an incredible job figuring out how to characterize that and express that.”


The Dark Knight Rises arrives in regular and IMAX theaters around the U.S. on July 20th, 2012. Be sure to check back soon on Screen Rant, for the unveiling of the first official full-length trailer for the film.

Source: LA Times

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  1. I just get more and more excited with each bit if info, can’t wait until the summer. I’m just very interested on Bane and how this all unfolds.

  2. I have faith in Nolan, I think the third and final installment of Batman’s journey will be a masterpiece bringing all three films full circle.

    • hell yea third 1 will difinatly be a master piece

  3. Nolan’s answer about the timeline was the most intriguing. What does he mean that the opening will make the decision to start there make sense? A ‘Watchmen’ photo montage perhaps? The possibilities….

  4. I feel like an addict jonesing for my next hit. Each little tidbit, any mention of TDKR, and I get the shakes. This film can’t come out soon enough!

  5. I really have the highest hopes for this film. It def has the potential to be great but the thing that scares me is that there is a lot going on. Personally, I think that Batman will fall hard, and will be out of the game for a while and in the meantime characters from the films like Gordon Levitt’s character and Hathaway’s will come together (due to the inspiration that Batman’s character has given them) and fight crime in Gotham while Batman is down.

    As long as they focus on Bane and Bruce Wayne’s characters I think we are good…Levitt and Hathaway dont need to to have origin stories explained in detail…

  6. I’m just glad it’s the Bane from the comics I grew up loving and not Uma Thurman’s stupid bodyguard.

  7. After Nolan’s done, someone should take his place and continue Nolan’s version of Batman, I have great ideas, Deadshot, Mr. Freeze (ask and I’ll tell you how to make him realistic), pennguin, riddler, hugo strange, black mask, etc…

    anyone wanna know what i would do if i was in charge? if I was in charge of the next three? (and its assuming batman is still under the cowl by the end of this next movie)

    • Ok, I’ll bite. What would you do?

    • How would you make freeze realistic? I’m stumped on that one

      • A scientist who lost his job (works for Wayne?) also has a sick wife, no money, no job, so he is desprite and goes stealing it from banks and what not. makes a liquid nitrogen gun, armor that protects himself from the liquid nitrogen and if he works for wayneco, he tries to get even with wayne, by going after the guy who fired him, morgan freeman…

        Black mask is easy enough
        Penguin is a weapons dealer (assassination with unbrellas that have machine guns attached underneath)
        Riddler is a genious with a split personallty
        Deadshot is hired by black mask

        And with all the villians from batmans universe, I could come up with ALOT more

      • Its more realistic then having him not being able to live in temperatures above 0

  8. I’m going ape-bat.

  9. I heard that Tom Hardy’s portraying Bane is actually scary. Which i’m excited for because i didn’t think Nolan and Heath Ledger could turn the Joker in to something scary, glad i was proven wrong. So i have nothing but confidence in Nolan and Hardy.

  10. “…he’s a classic movie monster in a way — but with a terrific brain.” I like the sound of that. :)

    • Indeed sir!

    • He is strong, he is brutal, he is intelligent, he feels no pain with his gas and he knows no mercy, huahahaha.
      Poor Batman, it was nice to have met you.

  11. It is a struggle to put hopes and anticipations into complete sentences, but it will be a huge payoff to finally be in the theatre with everyone else on this ride. I admire most of Nolan’s films, but I doubt we’ll ever see him do another trilogy in this genre. Should be an epic sense of closure and also a bit sad to see a director of his calibre leave comic book movies behind.

    • lol removed by Warner already

  12. Although The Riddler isn’t among my favorite of Batman’s foes 3 years from now I believe the way to do these next movies after TDKR is simply to find a perfect actor (Leonardo DiCaprio as DC’s Toy Man, Brad Pitt)Johnny Depp portraying the role of DC’s Edward Nigma in the horrific film intitled “Who is The Riddler?”) Here’s the thing you focus in on The riddler as a mythicl mysterious character in a real world and his strengths at their best also take time giving a build up into how Edward came to be the riddler. Make the movie around the riddler and a few of his most intriguing and logical comic book moments thus making him pass as relatively believable, stay true to his orgin which should be some shown or told relatively quick because it is irrelevant to the plot of the film (think where in terms of mystery and suspense is concern Jigsaw in the “Saw” movie saga) this would definitely work oh and have batman makes brief appearance in the movies climax scene stopping the riddler. You should watch it sometime especially with Johnny Depp as Enigma he should move like he did in his portrayal as the self entitled character of “Donnie Brasco”

  13. Bradd Pit gets the same treatment as the riddler movie starring as the ventriloquism with that wooden puppet Mr. Scarface this would make for a great movie if treated with care, or maybe even Robert Deniro as Victor Freeze himself put in a real world of logic, gravity and rational with some of its most popular comic book themed best moments…that could work however in these movies if they are done properly they can create there own stand alone trilogies and franchise. (Like Child’s Play, Gremlins, or even “Friday the 13th”) These concepts just need proper film on screen treatment. The characters are interesting enough

    • By the way I forgot to mention 1 unique villain placed in a real world of logic per movie for 1hr 30 minutes!!!This would work and Warner Brothers and Legendary could distribute it

      • “Brad Pit gets the same treatment as the riddler movie starring as the ventriloquism with that wooden puppet Mr. Scarface”

        Do you suggest that Mr. Pitt plays two characters? Or are you confusing two DIFFERENT characters and merging them together?

        “By the way I forgot to mention 1 unique villain placed in a real world of logic per movie for 1hr 30 minutes!!!This would work and Warner Brothers and Legendary could distribute it”

        Are you saying that they could have their own (for lack of a better word) spin-off? If so, I completely DISagree, who would they be competing with? Batman? If batman is the main hero going against said villain, it would be called Batman, or Dark Knight, or something to that effect.

        Do you want a Superman VS Mr Freeze movie? Really? He (Freeze) is known mainly as a Batman villain.

        You don’t see Lex Luther going up against Batman often enough to be a villain in the next batman movie… And Joker doesn’t go up against Wonder Woman often enough to be the main villain in the upcoming (fingers crossed) WW movie.

        Do you have grammar check?

  14. I wonder if any one from the Bat Family would show up to help Batman, anything could happen with the 7 year gap min witch the story takes place.

    • in witch the story takes place

  15. i know they said there would never be a robin in these films. but it occurs to me that an 8 year jump might be enough of a time span for batman to have taken a robin and for him to have moved onto being nightwing. maybe thats who joseph gordon levitt is playing? or maybe thats just hopeful thinking lol

  16. I just watched the new full length trailer at work and it was fantastic! Anne hathaway was a very seductive catwomen and the special effects looked really nice. I would go into detail but I don’t want to spoil any of it for everyone. I work at a movie theatre and we got it on harddrive this morning for the sherlock holmes release

  17. Christopher Nolan needs to re-dub Bane ASAP. I only understood a few words. Why would they release this prologue without fixing such a problem?
    Strangely I just watched a cam version and understood slightly more than when I saw it on Imax.

    • Agreed. I could understand a decent amount of what bane was saying but it was not easy by any means. It needs to be fixed. They have to cater to the masses.

  18. I’ve just seen the new trailer (bootlegged cam but real) and this looks awesome. And Bane IS a monster, mentally and physically. I’d put a link here but dont’t know if it’s against the rules etc. As of 19/12/11 9.00 GMT it’s online at various websites.
    Straight away you’re submerged into the “Nolanverse” we already know and it does answer a few questions we’ve been asking plotwise. Hurry up and release it officially WB.

  19. Ahhhhhhhh I’m so excited. I can’t even put it into words. The trailer, the prologue, every single word Nolan utters… It’s like The Dark Knight all over again. I love obsessing.