Christopher Nolan Says No to 3D On THE DARK KNIGHT RISES; Is This His Last BATMAN Movie?

     October 27, 2010

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Today is proving to be a great day for Batman fans. Earlier we revealed the third film in Christopher Nolan’s extraordinary series will be titled The Dark Knight Rises (what a beautiful sound that is), and that it will not be shot, or retrofitted, for 3D.  However, while Nolan will not use 3D, he does hint at something special on the horizon.

“We’re looking to do something technologically that’s never been done before,” Nolan said. “Our ambitions are to make a great movie.”

Right now The Dark Knight Rises is set to start filming in April for a July 2012 release. Hit the jump for more of Nolan’s thoughts on 3D and why this will presumably be his last foray into the Batman universe:

Director Christopher NolanAnother quote from Nolan, thanks to Hero Complex:

“We want the look and feel of the film to be faithful to what has come before in the first two films,” Nolan said. “There was a large canvas and operatic sweep to ‘The Dark Knight’ and we want to make a film that will carry on with that look and feel.”

While this might seem disappointing to those caught up in the recent 3D revolution, I think this is actually really great news. It shows that Nolan doesn’t have to answer to studio executives trying to make a quick buck, but is sticking to his own unique vision.

While 3D is terrific for colorful films such as James Cameron’s Avatar, and Pixar’s Toy Story 3, a film featuring a character as dark and brooding as Batman might look and feel slightly obscure with such technology. Not to mention dark – and I don’t mean tonally.

It’s no secret that 3D glasses mar the brightness of theater screens, dimming the colors so that heavily saturated films like M. Night Shyamalan’s The Last Airbender are nearly impossible to enjoy visually – you can’t see what’s going on amidst the darker color tones.  A film like The Dark Knight would hardly benefit from a 3D process as Nolan would have to brighten his film in order for it to play properly in the format for audiences, which would consequently impact the film in 2D.

I have no doubt that Nolan could use 3D to great effect – on, say, Zack Snyder’s upcoming Superman flick, which Nolan is producing, for example – but he is wise to ditch the format with Batman in favor of something bigger, and more visually exciting.

Christopher Nolan Batman 3Another brief quote from Nolan on why he doesn’t want to use 3D:

“There’s an intimacy at times [with spatial illusion of the 3-D effect] and we didn’t want to lose scale…Our ambition for the third movie is to complete a story that has begun. This is not starting over, this not rebooting. We’re finishing something, and keeping a consistency with what’s come before has real value.”

Does this mean The Dark Knight Rises will be Nolan’s last Batman film?  The way that quote reads…it sure sounds that way.

However, even if Nolan is finished making Batman movies, that doesn’t mean the franchise can’t continue, as Matt Damon can attest to with the Bourne franchise. The series can continue as long as audiences are buying tickets and filmmakers have stories worth telling. The question at this point is…which filmmaker is going to want to step into Nolan’s shoes?   Because if Nolan hits a home run with The Dark Knight Rises, it will be quite a challenge.

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