UHMC: Aging Batman/Batman Beyond (If Written/Directed by Quentin Tarantino)
Quentin Tarantino is one of my all-time favorite filmmakers. Winner of 2 Oscars for best original screenplay, there is no question that he is one of the most intricate and unique writers out there. You can read more about my reasoning for that in one of my previous posts. I often wondered what it would be like if Tarantino would put his very unique spin on some of my favorite films or franchises. Naturally the first that would come to mind is Batman.
That being said, here is my in depth “theory” as to who I would cast in a film about an aging Batman well passed his prime and thus ultimately passing on the cape and cowl for good as well as an introductory character analysis as to how I think Tarantino would write them. You may see some familiar faces in my casting choice. It’s not me being lazy or that I haven’t thought this through. It’s because they were such a good choice the first time around, they just had the wrong script/director to guide them. That and being able to incorporate characters from other works since.
Story: It has been over 25 years since the last sighting of “The Batman.” Now a generation removed, the older residents (particularly those in law enforcement and criminals), romanticize their memories and share stories of their final encounters with The Dark Knight. Due to an EMP charge set off by The Riddler, all video and audio recording of The Batman has been lost. Because of this, the younger generation considers the entire story of The Batman a fairy tale or an urban legend.
Lucious Fox is now the CEO of Wayne Enterprises and Bruce Wayne himself rarely makes public appearances anymore. The only time he leaves the house is to go to Wayne Towers for shareholder meetings every quarter, where he is quickly losing his grip of his empire. Terry McGinnis (the new Batman), is fresh out of Juvenile Detention granted an internship thanks to the Criminal Rehabilitation Initiative at Wayne Towers after getting a perfect score on his aptitude test . McGinnis is clearly brilliant showing tremendous talent in engineering, but he is a hothead with a temper.
Bruce Wayne/Michael Keaton: Now in his mid 60’s, Michael Keaton is the perfect age to reprise his role. Michael Keaton was the first Batman I grew up watching and still the best. After decades of physical, emotional, and mental endurance spent, Bruce Wayne is now a shell of the man he once was. He suffers from horrible PTSD, which is partly why he rarely makes public appearances anymore.
The Riddler/Jim Carrey: In my opinion, Jim Carrey is one of the most underrated actors of the last 15 years. He already played the roll in the 1995 Joel Schumacher version and Carrey’s performance was the best of the main cast by far. If you look at Carrey’s later works of “Man On The Moon,” “The Truman Show”, and “The Number 23”, Carrey can certainly express characters going through an internal struggle as well as an extreme sense of paranoia and psychosis. As for the character of Edward Nigma in Tarantino’s film, I see him being introduced sitting in Arkham in a straight jacket solving Rubik’s Cubes with his feet. He develops a terrible stutter as a result of his genius mind being subjected to a smorgasbord of experimental drugs that results in his racing ADD mind to think way faster than he can ever speak making him nearly unintelligible.
Two-Face/Christoph Waltz: This guy is a chameleon. American audiences were first introduced to him as the unforgettable Hans Landa in “Inglorious Basterds.” In my opinion, the most terrifying villain in movie history since Hannibal Lecter. He won the Oscar for his role in that film and a second one for “Django Unchained;” both Tarantino projects. There’s something about this guy on screen that just oozes duality just from his mere presence. Simultaneously charming and utterly terrifying at the same time is no easy feat. I see him losing his grip of control over his side of Blüdhaven with Penguin and the Meroni crime family moving in quickly. Dent had even finally undergone cosmetic surgery to repair the scars on the side of his face.
Penguin/Peter Dinklage: A gigantic talent in a tiny frame. Peter Dinklage can do terrifying and terrifyingly humorous just the same. Hellbent on controlling all of Gotham once and for all especially since both Batman and Joker have not been seen in years. I see this character almost like Joker was in the past. A sociopath who will just as easily kill his own men to attain his goal of controlling all of Gotham.
Joker/Mark Hamill: Can this just happen already? Please… Mark Hamill has been The Joker longer than anybody else; over 20 years if you add the animated series, films, and Arkham video game series. Now with advanced Alzheimer’s, he has no recollection of any of his criminal past or even the very existence of Batman. Or at least that’s what he wants you to believe… the joke will be on all of Gotham.
Bane/Mark Margolis: Have him do exactly what he did in “Breaking Bad.” Just take away the bell and replace it with a teddy bear. Mark Margolis did more acting with his finger, eye brows, cheeks, and nose with that role than most actors do with their entire bodies. Now nearly catatonic after a lifetime of TITAN dependency and then withdrawal, Bane’s role is more of a cameo and nod to more original villains of the past.
Lucious Fox/Samuel L. Jackson: With all due respect to Morgan Freeman… Because Duh! Fox is now the CEO of Wayne Enterprises and rules with an iron fist to protect Mr. Wayne’s family name and fortune to the bitter end. With Alfred having already passed, Fox is now the exclusive secret assistant to technological and morale support for the new Dark Knight; a role that he had put behind him over 20 years before and had no intention of doing again. The demands of running Wayne Enterprises and being Batman’s new tech guru and assistant again puts him at a physical, psychological, and emotional breaking point.
Terry McGinnis/Michael B. Jordon: You want to argue against my casting choice here because he’s not White? Come at me! This guy is a phenomenal actor! I can absolutely imagine an amazing chemistry with Michael Keaton especially regarding training montages and just having him react to having an ailing Bruce Wayne as a mentor.
So there you have it, folks. Yay or nay? Granted this will NEVER happen. In fact, I think I remember reading in an interview somewhere that Tarantino would never do a superhero film even if he wanted to.