Of all the actors who have played Batman on the big screen, I’ll always have a soft spot for Michael Keaton. Then again, I tend to enjoy Michael Keaton in all of his movies, and I wish he had donned the cape and cowl a third time. In a recent interview with Marc Maron on the WTF podcast, Keaton said he wanted the third go-around, and pitched an origin story along the lines of where Christopher Nolan eventually went with the caped crusader.
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“The guy who’s doing them now, Chris Nolan, he’s so talented, it’s crazy. [Christian Bale] is so talented. It’s so good.” he enthused. “But I say that like I’ve seen them, and I actually haven’t. I didn’t even see much of the second one that I did.”
“You look at where he went, which is exactly what I wanted to do when I was having meetings about the third one,” he continued. “I said you want to see how this guy started. We’ve got a chance here to fix whatever we kind of maybe went off. This could be brilliant.”
Sadly, this was not to be, and when Burton left the franchise, so did Keaton since Joel Schumacher didn’t agree with the actor’s vision for the third film. Furthermore, Keaton sensed which way the bat-winds were blowing. “I could see that was going south,” said Keaton. This falls in line with comments Keaton made to the L.A. Times back in 2011 about the third movie:
“I knew we were in trouble in talks for the third one when certain people started the conversation with ‘Why does it have to be so dark?’ ‘Why does he have to be so depressed?’ ‘Shouldn’t there be more color in this thing?’ I knew I was headed for trouble and that it wasn’t a road I was going to go down.”