Christian Bale: People Would ‘Laugh at Me’ for Taking Batman ‘Seriously’

"I had tons of people laugh at me and just say, 'Well, that’s just not going to work at all,'" Bale shared of the Christopher Nolan-helmed "Batman Begins."
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (2012)Christian Bale
"The Dark Knight Rises"
Ron Phillips

Anyone would be an “American Psycho” to doubt Christian Bale’s ability to embody Bruce Wayne.

Yet the Oscar winner revealed that the announcement of Christopher Nolan’s serious take on Batman for “Batman Begins” was met with skepticism back in 2005.

“I would [tell people] we’re going to sort of do Batman, but take him seriously,” Bale told The Washington Post. “I had tons of people laugh at me and just say, ‘Well, that’s just not going to work at all.'”

“Batman Begins” was the first installment in the DC franchise since Joel Schumacher’s “Batman & Robin” in 1997, which quickly was deemed campy for its Bat nipple suit and over-the-top acting.

Nolan’s “Dark Knight” trilogy, which spanned from 2005 to 2012, garnered two Oscar wins, including a posthumous Best Actor award for Heath Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker.

“It’s wonderful to be a part of a trilogy that proved those people wrong,” Bale added.

The Dark Knight” trilogy also set future portrayals of the Caped Crusader in a darker direction, seemingly returning to the darker tone Tim Burton hinted at in “Batman” and “Batman Returns.” Matt Reeves’ most recent “The Batman” starred Robert Pattinson as a moody, grunge-inflected orphan superhero.

“It is funny to see [Matt Reeves’ ‘The Batman’] now, because all these memories come back of, ‘It’s too dark,'” Burton told Empire magazine in honor of the 30th anniversary of “Batman Returns.” “So, it makes me laugh a little bit.”

Burton continued, “[Back then] they went the other way. That’s the funny thing about it. But then I was like, ‘Wait a minute. Okay. Hold on a second here. You complain about me, I’m too weird, I’m too dark, and then you put nipples on the costume? Go fuck yourself.’ Seriously. So yeah, I think that’s why I didn’t end up [doing a third film]…”

As for Bale donning the Batsuit once again, the actor told Screen Rant that he would be up for leading a fourth “Batman” film so long as Nolan is directing.

“I had a pact with Chris Nolan,” Bale explained. “We said, ‘Hey, look. Let’s make three films, if we’re lucky enough to get to do that. And then let’s walk away. Let’s not linger too long.’ In my mind, it would be something if Chris Nolan ever said to himself, ‘You know what, I’ve got another story to tell.’ And if he wished to tell that story with me, I’d be in.”

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