The original Batman movie quadrilogy - Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever, and Batman & Robin - are returning to theaters for a big anniversary. 2019 marks the 80th anniversary of Batman's debut in the pages of DC Comics, and it's a momentous occasion indeed. Gotham's protector is one of - if not the - most popular superheroes in the world, and while it's been awhile since he's really gotten his due on the big screen, The Caped Crusader certainly sports a colorful theatrical history.
Batman's film debut came in 1966, in an unabashedly campy but still quite fun TV show spinoff of the classic Batman series starring Adam West as the titular hero and Burt Ward as Robin. Bruce Wayne's alter ego wouldn't return to theaters until 1989's Batman, directed by Tim Burton, featuring Michael Keaton's Bats squaring off against Jack Nicholson's Joker. Keaton and Burton would come back for 1992's Batman Returns, which added Danny DeVito's Penguin and Michelle Pfieffer's Catwoman to the mix. Unfortunately, Joel Schumacher's 1995 Batman Forever and 1997 Batman & Robin were seen as big drops in quality by most.
In the decades since, Batman was resurrected via Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy, and returned most recently via Batfleck's involvement in the DCEU. He'll soon be revitalized yet again for Matt Reeves' The Batman. Next month, Fathom Events will give Bat-fans the chance to revisit the four 1980s and 1990s Batman films in theaters, likely representing the first chance many have ever had to see them on the big screen.
Batman (1989) will screen on Saturday, May 4 at more than 600 theaters in the US, at 1pm and 4pm local time. Batman Returns screens on Monday, May 6 at 4pm and 7pm, while Batman Forever shows on Sunday, May 12 at 1pm and 4pm. Finally, Batman & Robin graces theater screens on Tuesday, May 14 on 4pm and 7pm. Tickets are on sale now at Fathom Events' website. While the prospect of people going to see the Schumacher films might seem odd, it's important to remember that both have developed a cult fanbase in recent years due to their sheer silliness.
With Batman celebrating his 80th birthday this year, and no new Batman movies arriving until 2021, re-releasing these old school DC films to theaters offers dedicated fans an opportunity to celebrate Bruce Wayne's anniversary in theaters. No disrespect intended to Ben Affleck's portrayal, but here's hoping that Reeves' The Batman represents a proper Hollywood resurgence for The Dark Knight, in what will be his first big screen solo outing since 2012. In the meantime, fans can head to theaters and chill with Arnold Schwarzenegger's quipping Mr. Freeze.
Source: Fathom Events