Rumor: David Goyer Begins Working on Script for BATMAN 3; Matt Argues for Re-Launch

     February 8, 2010


David Goyer is leaving ABC’s sci-fi/adventure TV series FlashForward and Deadline believes it’s because he’s going to go work on the script for the third Batman film.  Says Nikki Fink(e): “Of course, Goyer’s feature career is really heating up, since he co-wrote Batman Begins, and penned the story for The Dark Knight, and is now writing the third Batman installment with Chris Nolan’s brother Jonah [aka Jonathan].”  I’m slightly skeptical that Goyer is just now starting work on Batman 3 since the film is so highly-anticipated that any spark of information will ignite the online world (remember those delightful villain casting rumors?).

Of course, the third movie in franchises rarely excel past the first two installments.  I imagine Batman 3 will be a slight disappointment, but not a franchise killer.  However, Warner Bros. will reboot the series anyway with an intent to skew younger.  Wait, sorry.  That was another successful superhero franchise.

Then again, a re-launch for Batman after the third film wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.  Hit the jump for my argument why plus information on Goyer’s other projects.

batman_dark_knight_wallpaper_why_so_serious.jpgBefore I jump into my argument for rebooting the Batman franchise, here’s a brief update on all of Goyer’s other projects, all of which I imagine fall behind the Batman 3 juggernaut: the Green Arrow and DC supervillains flick Super Max, Ghost Rider 2, and The Invisible Man among others.  Goyer was also tapped to write the Magneto movie but that film has evaporated with X-Men: First Class moving forward.

Now to why I think Batman could use a fresh direction:

Christopher Nolan has done interesting work with his take on Batman.  He’s cast substantial actors known for their acting prowess rather than their star power, and placed the characters in a realistic world.  But is realism really what’s best for Batman?  The challenge in Nolan’s movies is to see if audiences will buy a man dressed like a bat fighting crime in a real-world setting.  Judging from the box office grosses of the first two films, they have.

But how far do we want to see this go?  Yes, you could presumably cast any villain into this “real” Gotham, and I think the Joker proved it could work-to a point.  I think the Riddler, an egotistical mad genius eager to prove his brilliance against a true challenger,  is a cakewalk compared to a baddie like Mr. Freeze or Poison Ivy.  Remember this fake poster for the third Batman movie featuring a photoshopped Kristen Bell as Harley Quinn?  Is that really what people want?

After the disaster of Batman & Robin, Nolan swung the pendulum to the opposite direction and created his real Gotham City, or as it’s known in The Dark Knight, Chicago.  But what is the purpose of this realism?  I suppose you could argue that it makes the costumed characters more fantastical, but the approach also feels timid.

As I said last year, I think the videogame Batman: Arkham Asylum is the best Batman movie that will never be made.  It’s dark, it’s gritty, and it’s not perfect either with the Unreal Engine making sure all the male characters are buff (marvel at Gordon’s barrel chest!) and all the women are sexpots (Arleen Sorkin’s voice acting makes the character work, but just barely).  But it manages to create a world that feels real and yet entirely separate from our own.  Nolan’s films feel ashamed that they came from a comic book.

Now before people reading this go apeshit, please know that I don’t hate Batman Begins or The Dark Knight.  In fact, I find them both enjoyable.  But I don’t want to see Batman live in the real world forever.  I think Nolan should complete his trilogy and then hand it over to another director that will provide a new take on the character.  It doesn’t have to be a complete reboot since we’re all tired of Batman’s origin story, but I don’t know how long I can live in Nolan’s Chicago/Gotham City without getting restless.

Circling all the way back around to Goyer and J. Nolan’s approach to Batman 3, I think their most difficult task isn’t in devising a premise (we know that Batman is on the run after The Dark Knight) or selection a villain or villains.  It’s in finding a way to surprise audiences.  Of course, that presumes that audiences want to be surprise as opposed to dealing with a disruption of their comfort in Nolan’s real-world Batman.

One more thing: either recast Batman or get Bale to stop sucking at his Batman-voice.  I don’t care if he threatens to tear the lights down.


  • Scott Roberts

    I want a 3rd Nolan film in order to allow the man the finish off the trilogy. If he wants to continue, Im all for it but if not this is how I would proceed. First, I would have Snyder or someone else do a close adaption of the DKR and then four or five years later bring in a new team to create a new trilogy of films (new Director, writer, and actors) that does not begin with an origin story but instead starts out with Batman already established as Batman.

  • MonsterKilledThePilot

    They would never make a movie in the style of Arkham Asylum. It'd be cool, though.

  • junierizzle

    Please, that's like saying “I think they should reboot THE GODFATHER, you know. Make it zanier” Reboot the NOLAN trilogy, that's the funniest thing I've heard all week.

  • Dave Morris

    I really hope they don't do a reboot because it'd be nice to let the movie series build up its own mythology. Also, we really don't need another origin story!

    Trying to crowbar in the comic's classic villains, the Riddler, etc, could be a red herring. Sure, I'd like to see Nolan's take on them but for every bat-fan there must be a few thousand moviegoers who are coming to it as a blank slate.

  • Bob P

    I tend to agree- there is no way they will repeat the success of TDK, because the main reason for the film's notoriety was Heath's tragic death.
    There is no other Batman villain who could top the Joker- that's why he was left alive, so again it goes back to the tragedy.
    I would argue to reboot it as an HBO series. There are way too many villains and side characters to wait 3 years for 2 hours of story. That way we can get a definitive version of all of Batman's characters.

  • Dave Morris

    Btw it's not the Unreal Engine's fault that the AA characters are all buff. That's an art call. Sorry to be pedantic :)


    Meh, people that say Bat-3 will be a dissapointment compared the TDK really should start reading the source materials. Heath was a FANTASTC JOKER, yes, and its a shame he wont be in 3, yes.
    But Batman has always had a fantastic array of villains and storylines.

    People that say “No Riddler, he's too silly a character, or hes too much like Joker, or he's boring etc” dont have the imagination to make it work for them. I've read that a lot too. Same for Penguin, I read somewhere that even Nolan thought Penguin was too far fetched for his take, I dont know if that factual, but whats far fetched about a fat crime boss that wears a tux and smokes cigars?
    Maybe his sources on Penguin only come from the foul sewer dwelling Burton version (who i really liked by the way but it was stylized)

    My take would be… CRISPIN GLOVER as Riddler, a serial killer that is obsessed with finding out who Batman is (using Mr Reece's almost blab from TDK as his inspiration?) Hmm Mr Reece sounds like Mysteries by the way.

    Penguin, simple a Mob Boss who takes over from Falcone & Maroni. A restaurant/night club owner from Chicago that acts like a kingpin.
    I would cast… TIMOTHY SPALL as Penguin, nicknames that because of his tuxedo obsession.

    Besides all that, theres limitless possibilities to finish off the franchise, we still need to see the BAT-CAVE, a better Bat-suit too I hope.

    Maybe Riddler, exposes Bruce as Batman, forcing the Fox Dept to flee to the Cave so when the cops get to Wayne Enterprises its empty.
    TDK was great, but still so many unresolved Bat issues left over from Begins. (I also hope the cheesy bits are left out this time too. TDK was a huge phenomenon, but it still had plenty of issues that could be bettered.)

    Maybe Talia Al Ghul could make an appearance?


    oh, and I would LOVE to see a Re-Bat of Batman, BUT after Nolans work is done, as I mentioned above, Nolans work is unfinished.

    But Reboot the Bat, cant wait for that day, and yes Arkham Asylum style would be EPIC!

  • hunter_d

    Let me just say for everyone here — YES! We all want Kristen Bell in vamped up makeup. I would watch that for 10 hours, even if 9 1/2 of them were her reading the newspaper.

  • junierizzle

    That is actually a good idea. It could be like their SPAWN series only live action.

  • Aquariasm

    No, Mr. BNb P. If Batman goes back to TV, it might run for about 2 seasons and then its back into the closet for the caped crusader for another 20 years. I have to agree peripherally, though, that the tragedy of TDK was the untimely death of Mr. Ledger (NOT the main reason for the film's notoriety)–especially considering that Nolan killed off Harvey 2-Face. It's going to be a generation before ANYONE fills the shoes of Heath's Joker. Jack was good as a modern Cesar Romero with a gangster back story but if we are going to stay in the gritty realism without the depth of Heath's Joker, going anywhere NEAR the role would be absolute folly. No, as much as I love the new Batman chronicles (Bale's growl aside), I think the only real choice for villainy in a new movie is the steroid pumped up Bane accompanied by a newly escaped Scarecrow because Cillian Murphy is so cool. And where the Hell is Superman, anyway? But lets not forget that the ULTIMATE goal of the rumour and subsequent blog post is to provide an idea mill for those writers whom are being PAID to write the script.

  • PEP

    man u anti-batman… stop critisizing, start appreciating u jerko….

  • [A]

    haha I'm ok with Bale's voice — but english is not my native language, so I can rely on subtitles any time I don't understand what Bats is saying

  • Leonard Part 0

    I agree with this article. I don't think a reboot is necessary either, it can definitely build up more and more- Batman, Gotham, the supervillains etc. But not go crazy and without foundation like Schumacher's. That's what was great about what Nolan did- it created a strong foundation before it jumps into more ludicrous situations.

    I liked this article discussing the direction of Batman 3:

    which discusses the escalation of supervillains in Gotham and the underworld coming together more.

  • maziarlahooti

    Make Batman unrealistic again? All the good Batman comics have a strong root in realism too. And in this day and age most audiences don't buy the kind of bullshit we got in the Tim Burton batman movies. I'm sorry. Audiences are smarter now. We wonder how the hell he gets all these gadgets and nobody finds out. We wonder what is going on inside the mans head.

    Although i am not totally against the idea of a reboot. Why reboot it? why not make say “Dark knight returns?” The Frank Miller version where Batman is in his sixties and puts on the cape and cowl and wrecks havoc.

    I think the Chris Nolan movies are good but flawed. But i certainly don't think turning batman into kids movies again is the right answer. If you wanna know what the best Batman Stories are, read Joseph Loebb Batman and Frank Miller Batman and Ed Brubaker Batman. THese are the stories we should tell.

    Some of the best Batman and Superman stories ever told are what if stories. These are the movies that should be getting made. Just please don't make me watch Bruce Wayne's parents die again.

  • topher

    you are wrong sir. Christopher Nolan's take on Batman is the best thing to happen to the franchise…the whole point of Batman is the element of realism. What, do you want another Schumacher fiasco?! go home dude.
    Nolan and crew have done a fantastic job of honoring the characters and their legacy. moreover, he has said he recognizes that 3rd films are usually a kiss of death and thus will only do a third film if the script is a great. so if Goyer and Jonah are working a script, they must have something great.
    so….i respectfully say…you are so…so wrong…and how dare you call for a reboot. i think hollywood is a bit too reboot happy as is…and theres not a damn thing wrong with this Batman franchise. in fact, its phenomenal…Batman Begins and the Dark Knight are two of the most successful and critically acclaimed superhero films ever. moreover they are recognized as exceptional films in general.
    so…with all due respect…the writer of the article can bite it…because he's obviously a clueless toolbag.

  • topher

    and Christian Bale's Batman voice is perfect…Batman should sound gruff and scary. not all whispery and boring.
    again…this mr. goldberg is a toolbag.

  • topher

    lol totally agree junierizzle!!

  • Corin Prendiville

    Eh? His voice was the one major blemish of the movie- I along with every other person in the theater cringed every time he spoke. You could almost hear our jaws tightening.

  • habsolute

    No one could have expected that the Dark Knight would be as mindblowing as it was. IMO best picture of that year. Nolan is so brilliant, he can captivate people and as good as Avatar was, I'm over it. I'm still not over BB or TDK. They were simply masterpieces. IF, and that's a big if, Nolan wants to keep going (which would only happen if he thought he could deliver the goods), let him. I love the “real world” Batman and we've already seen the zany side of Batman and it's just, well…not as good as reading the comic/graphic novel.

    On a sidenote, as much as he gets flak for it, I actually liked the raspier Batman voice, but I know I'm in the minority. Far more powerful that George Clooney shooting one liners.

  • Jack Downs

    lol I really dont get why so many peeps pick on the voice, its really not as bad as people make out. The films set in the hyper realistic world and if a dude in a bat suit jumped out at me in an alleyway with that voice, Id be scared lol. Though they do need to get the sound mix right in post, somtimes it is abit hard to hear(the animated show had a better idea with the wayne voice being the one he puts on). All for Batman 3, i woint be dissapointed anyway, Batman and Gordan were my fav characters in TDK over the Joker. Then they need to reboot it closer to the comics, so we can have a full on Batcave, Batmobile ,villians etc and even a more likely Superman crossover at that point.

  • smiley

    I thought the idea behind the voice was Bruce Wayne is a famous
    millionaire playboy regularly makes tv appearances to talk about
    his charitable ventures so uses 'the voice' to avoid recognition.
    Gordon would certainly recognize.
    Anyway prefer the realism in the last two Batman's it's what made them stand
    out from all the other Superhero films

  • [A]

    “Remember this fake poster for the third Batman movie featuring a photoshopped Kristen Bell as Harley Quinn? Is that really what people want?” –NO

  • Gus

    I almost agreed with your first comment, but you are just a little too in love with Chris Nolan's Batman universe if you can't find anything to criticize. I like the movies and all, but they're far from perfect.

    and your second comment has to be a joke, right? Christian Bale's Batman voice is TERRIBLE! Anyone who thinks it's perfect is an even bigger toolbag than Mr. Goldberg. (fyi i don't think matt is a toolbag at all. however, i do disagree with him on this topic.)

  • Nate

    Leave Batman alone already…These Batman films along with the Spiderman films have pushed comic book movies to new heights. Does anybody remember the Spiderman films in the 80's or Batman in the 90's. Mr. Nolan I hope you make 3 more Batman films.

  • beniciodeltoro

    You sir, are and idiot ;)

    How about we just reboot every franchise after the first movie instead of after the second one? What a waste of my time reading this. Maybe it's because some of us want to see a new and interesting movie besides seeing an origin story done to death. It's rare to see a movie critic who is ALL ABOUT THE KEY DEMOS but hey, we all have our passions and some of them are more retarded than others.

  • Tony

    A Batman movie in the style of Arkham Asylum would be A.W.E.S.O.M.E. Not too realistic, but not too comicy either.

    I have nothing against Nolan's movies, but as a Batman comic fan, I wait for the day when a fully realized comic-based Batman movie is made. Something that stays true to the comics without having to change too much from the original source. Something like, as mentioned, Arkham Asylum.

  • dmaquino217

    I think a Tahlia Al Ghul appearance is necessary, especially with Rachel Dawson out of the picture. It could start off with Bruce Wayne attempting to lead a normal life with her. I would prob. pick Eva Green for that part.

  • dmaquino217

    I would hope this is NOT the case, there are way better choices for that role, if they even do it. I can't see her going to a “dark place” lol. Someone mentioned Rachel McAdams which wouldnt be horrible, but it would probably be an unknown.

  • Panzerese

    Let me get this straight: The guy likes the first two films but would rather see Batman return to the style of the Joel Shumacher series?

    Overall, this guy has a poor taste in artistic direction.

  • Panzerese

    Let me get this straight: The guy likes the first two films but would rather see Batman return to the style of the Joel Shumacher series?

    Overall, this guy has a poor taste in artistic direction.

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  • small business financing

    I suppose that this reboot is a foolish idea, have Sony lost their minds or what? We want the continuation of Spider-Man. More than that there is NO Spider-Man without Tobey Maguire, he is the best for this role. No one else. It will be a completely different and worse film