Who Should Play Batman in ‘Batman vs. Superman’? Russ Whiting August 20, 2013 Movies I don’t care who plays Batman. At least that’s what I used to think… until that fateful morning I heard Orlando Bloom’s name getting rolled through the “might be Batman” rumor mill for the upcoming Batman vs. Superman film. Until the dark times. I grew up watching the film Bat-mantle passed from actor to actor with Power Ranger recurrence; stars who initially sounded like terrible fits for the Caped Crusader that ended up pulling off the job with aplomb — so it takes a fair amount to rustle my jimmies. Ryan Gosling? Fine, that I can learn to accept. Josh Brolin? If Val Kilmer pulled it off, surely the man deserves a chance. (But let’s just forget about Jonah Hex.) Zack Snyder’s been drawing on Frank Miller’s classic The Dark Knight Returns for inspiration But Bloom? Slender-bodied, silver-maned, tights-wearing, twinkly-eyed Bloom? Might as well cast Edward Cullen as Superman, implore Stephanie Meyer to whip up a screenplay after a nocturnal emission and make Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent play grab-ass in the backseat of the Batmobile during the opening credits if that’s the route you want to take. Then again, maybe there’s no need for panic just yet. Director Zack Snyder said he’s been drawing on Frank Miller’s classic The Dark Knight Returns for inspiration: That means the Batman in Batman vs. Superman would be a proficient, seasoned, grizzled veteran Batman — played by someone a little older, a little wiser, and even meaner than Bale was in the Nolan trilogy. So who should get the part? Batman-News.com did a nice write-up regarding some of the leading candidates for the role but here’s a few more that might do an even better job carrying the utility belt: Jon Hamm Jon Hamm is the 42-year-old, Golden Globe Award winning actor best known for his role as Don Draper on the AMC series Mad Men. Why He’d Work: Jon Hamm has the look right down to the Bruce Timm-esque, Batman: The Animated Series jawline. The fact that he’s a magnetic onscreen presence with an impressive acting range, and has exhibited the dickish “billionaire playboy” demeanor before doesn’t hurt much either. Harry Crane remarks in Episode 3 of Mad Men, “Draper? Who knows anything about that guy? No one’s ever lifted that rock. He could be Batman for all we know.” Wouldn’t that be something? He was even rumored for the role of Superman before it went to the younger Henry Cavill, which shows the powers-that-be have faith in his superhero capabilities. Why He Wouldn’t Work: He’d need to bulk up and he’s unproven in action sequences that are a prerequisite for a Batman flick. At 42-years-old, would Hamm be too stiff and unwieldy? (And no, that’s not what “she said.”) Armie Hammer Although he has already ruled himself out of a future Batman role and is coming off a disappointing Lone Ranger film, Armie Hammer could still prove a dark horse candidate. Why He’d Work: He’s a strapping young lad with the mien and physicality for the role. He was also all set to play Batman in George Miller’s Justice League: Mortal until that got project got mired in delayment hell. Why He Wouldn’t Work: Hammer has already expressed his lack of desire to play Batman; “I’m not actually a big fan of superhero films,” he said in an interview with Metro. “If you have a guy who is supposed to be invulnerable, then what’s the point?” Invulnerability? Well, that rules out Superman. Batman isn’t exactly invulnerable though, now is he? He’s just the baddest man on the face of the planet. (Sorry Mike Tyson.) Being 26 years old doesn’t exactly fit in with the whole “We want a grizzled, veteran Batman” image either. Christian Bale But I thought Christian Bale was done with Batman? You heard what he and Christopher Nolan said about The Dark Knight Rises being their final Bat-feature, didn’t you? Well, yeah. But now there might be $50 million involved. That’s usually a game changer. Well, most likely $50 million anyways, if Vincent Russel, the bearer of such news in an e-book entitled, Beyond Batman: The Unauthorized True Story of Christian Bale and His Dark Knight Dilemma can be seen as a viable source. It’s not like Bale is doomed to his role as Bruce Wayne, either. He might just be holding out for what he sees as an even more suitable paycheck for his services. According to Entertainment Weekly: For those who want to go down the rabbit-hole, Bale starts shooting Exodus, his Moses epic with Ridley Scott, this fall, but he’s not yet officially booked for anything in early 2014, when Batman vs. Superman is tentatively scheduled to shoot. So he’s potentially available. Bale also wouldn’t be the first actor to feign disinterest in order to secure a better payday. He’s either completely content with walking away from the franchise, or he’s playing this non-negotiation negotiation perfectly.” Why He’d Work: Were you born after 2005? Were you raised in the basement of some purple drank swilling cult who never allowed you to see the light of day? And even if you were, that’s no damn excuse, pipsqueak. Bale is movie Batman and he has been for the past eight years. Why He Wouldn’t Work: Bale is firmly entrenched as Batman in the eyes of fans thanks to the compelling Nolan trilogy. The only problem? Although the films feature a very capable Batman, he’s a very grounded and realistic one at the same time. If Batman is going to stand alongside Superman, he’ll have to be the hyperintelligent, consummate detective and genius-level tactician that he’s often portrayed as in the DC Comics and animated films. (AKA, Bat-God.) As Superman says in Grant Morrison’s first storyline in JLA, Batman is ”the most dangerous man on Earth.” Although Bale could probably make this transition with little difficulty, the sudden surge in the scope of his abilities might be perplexing to some fans and a fresh face behind the mask might better differentiate the ambience of Snyder’s upcoming film. Bale has also been quoted as saying “It’s a torch that should be handed from one actor to another. So I enjoy looking forward to what somebody else will come up with,” so perhaps his interest in the role has waned. Jim Caviezel Jesus Christ, that guy? Well, yeah. Exactly. The actor best known for playing J.C. himself in Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ is my top choice for the next Batman. Why He Would Work: Although Caveziel is a solid actor and the perfect age at 44 if they’re going ahead with this whole “more experienced” Caped Crusader motif — I was still skeptical just like you. I mean, bearing the Crucifix and subsequently getting nailed to it, being whipped mercilessly, and then coming back to life are all pretty impressive feats, I guess: but can the guy throw a Batarang? (Just kidding, fellow religious folk.) Then I learned about Person of Interest, a crime drama television series created by Jonathan Nolan (younger brother of Christopher). Caviezel plays John Reese, a former CIA agent and Green Beret that is hired by a billionaire to stop crimes before they happen in New York City. Take a look at this clip from the show: Or this one. And especially this one if you have some more time on your hands… And tell me the transition to Batman for Caviezel wouldn’t be damn near seamless, right down to the bad-ass intonation of his “I’m not a diplomat,” and “No one will be able to protect you from me.” Why He Wouldn’t Work: Person of Interest is currently slated to begin its third season in the Fall of 2013. If it’s as well done as the previous two seasons, future shooting for the show would conflict with a starring movie role. So there you have it? Did I miss anyone? Have a better idea of who should answer the Bat-Signal’s call and then disappear on Gordon? Sound off in the comments. Brush up on your Batman knowledge and get the entire The Dark Knight Trilogy (Batman Begins / The Dark Knight / The Dark Knight Rises) for only $27.19 on Amazon. LarryFeekmo I wouldn’t mind seeing Brolin, but oddly enough he’s almost too robotic acting in most of his movies. Hamm would probably be better because of his emotional range. ME24601 Karl Urban Koas Perfect choice GeO They’re looking for late thirties, early forties. Someone charming and also intimidating. Helloooooo, that sounds like the current Batman. If Marvel did it with RDJ in Iron man and the Avengers. Then why can’t DC/Warner do it with Christian Bale. Can you imagine the fan uproar if they replaced RDJ before the Avengers?! I mean, who else can utter these words, “i want you to remember the man who beat you”, to our favorite Kryptonian hero? And can you imagine the box office revenue that would generate?! The transition of Nolan’s Batman to Snyder’s darker/hyper-intelligent Batman would be easier than most think. This is Hollywood for Pete’s sake. It brings me to that old saying “If it ain’t broke… LarryFeekmo Don’t want to spill any spoilers here, but It could easily tie in to the ending of Dark Knight Rises as well with a little polish from the screenwriters. David Brooke Brad Pitt! I believe Nolan has said he wanted Guy Pierce originally but Pierce turned it down cuz he didn’t want to be in any big franchise flicks. Obviously he’s too skinny, but I think he could pull it off.