It's been less than a week since iconic actor Adam West passed away at the age of 88. However it has been confirmed by sources that he completed voice work on the sequel to Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders.
Despite his varied character work over the years, West will always be known for his wonderfully eccentric portrayal of Batman in the 1960's ABC TV series (as well as the feature-length film in 1966). This version of the (not so) Dark Knight was resurrected for the recent Warner Bros. animated movie Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders. The brand new story took place in the same universe as the '60s show, and was made to celebrate its 50th anniversary. The film ignored all the other DC animated adaptations and returned West to the role in a voice-acting capacity. Burt Ward also returned to voice Robin, as well as Julie Newmar reprising her vocals as Catwoman. The plot saw the dynamic duo up against the combined might of Joker, Penguin, Riddler, and Catwoman and one of their usual wacky plots to take over the world and create chaos. The film was well received by critics and fans, with a sequel subsequently being announced with William Shatner playing Two-Face, and a release expected sometime in 2017.
But with the recent loss of West, it was uncertain as to whether the actor had finished recording his voice-work for the new film or if the project would ever be completed. The good news is 13th Dimension contacted Warner Bros. and it has been confirmed that West's recordings had indeed been completely finished. No further information around the proposed release date has been announced, although it is thought that there could be an announcement during San Diego Comic-Con next month.
The film itself is currently called Batman vs. Two-Face, and will be a direct sequel to Return of the Caped Crusaders. Although Two-Face never actually appeared in the '60s TV series, legendary science fiction writer Harlan Ellison wrote a story that would have introduced him to that particular rogues gallery. It never made it to air, but DC comics did publish a version of it called The Two-Way Crimes of Two-Face written by Len Wein and drawn by artist José Luis Garcia-Lopez. It has been rumored (but not verified) that the plot for the sequel may well be an adaptation of that story. Along with Shatner, Ward is back as Robin and Newmar will also purr once again as their feline nemesis.
Whilst fans and colleagues mourn the departure of West, it's nice to think that we have at least one more performance to look forward to and with the actor reprising his most beloved role. One last outing for the original caped crusaders will be very welcome indeed, and we'll keep you up to date with further developments on this project as we hear them.
Source: 13th Dimension