THE DARK KNIGHT RISES IMAX Prologue World Premieres in Hollywood; Video Blog Recap and 10 Things to Know (Spoiler Free)

     December 8, 2011

Tom Hardy Bane THE DARK KNIGHT RISES image slice

NOTE: This is a completely spoiler-free recap of The Dark Knight Rises IMAX Prologue

With The Dark Knight Rises IMAX Prologue hitting theaters next week in front of Mission Impossible 4, Warner Bros. decided to world premiere the footage tonight at the IMAX theater at Universal Citywalk in Hollywood.  As you might imagine, the theater was filled with journalists from around the world, as well as some of the Dark Knight filmmakers like director Christopher Nolan, producer Charles Roven, Jonathan Nolan (Chris’ brother and a screenwriter on the film) and producer Emma Thomas.

As the lights went down and the film started to play, you could feel the energy in the room rise as we were treated to the first look at the opening six minutes of The Dark Knight Rises and a montage of short clips from the rest of the film.  So you’re probably wondering what I thought….it was fucking awesome.  Hit the jump for more including a video blog recap.

the-dark-knight-rises-teaser-posterBefore going any further, it’s important to note that WB asked all the reporters to refrain from writing a blow by blow account of the footage.  They really want everyone to walk into the theater next week knowing as little as possible.  Like we did tonight.

All I can say is…I’m so happy I went in cold, and if you’re smart you will avoid any article that reveals the specifics of the footage.  That way you’re enjoying the footage exactly the way Christopher Nolan wants you to.

While I won’t write anything specific about what we saw, I will say a little….if you were wondering if Tom Hardy could pull off Bane, any doubts will be erased after you see the footage.   If you were nervous the Nolan’s couldn’t raise the bar any higher after The Dark Knight, trust me, they have, and your jaw will hit the ground a few times while watching the footage.

While I only got to see about six minutes of film plus a minute or so of clips from the rest of the movie, the IMAX footage left me breathless and beyond excited for The Dark Knight Rises.   I really cannot wait for next summer when I’ll get to see the rest of it.

Anyway, shortly after the presentation ended I recorded a video blog with Peter from /Film and Alex from FirstShowing.  It’s totally spoiler free.  If you want to see 3 nerds geek out over The Dark Knight Rises, you’re in the right place.  Further down the page is 10 Things to Know from tonight’s world premiere.

Here’s 10 Things to Know from Tonight’s World Premiere

  • Before the IMAX presentation for the journalists from around the world, a number of famous filmmakers were given a look at the footage.  When I arrived at the theater, I ran into Eli Roth, Edgar Wright, Bryan Singer, and heard that Duncan Jones, Michael Bay, Jon Favreau, and more than a few other big name directors saw the footage about an hour before us.  The filmmakers I ran into were all smiles.
  • Before the presentation began, Nolan addressed the crowd and explained why IMAX means so much to him and what he hopes to accomplish with the IMAX-only prologue.  He explained that he considers IMAX to be the best film format and called it an “incredibly immersive way to tell a story.”  He went on to say that he really wants the fans to find the IMAX format for the movie, which is the purpose behind “the premiere road show engagement” wherein the prologue is only being shown at selected IMAX film theaters across the country.
  • Producer Emma Thomas told me that The Dark Knight Rises will have a lot more IMAX footage than The Dark Knight.  While it’s still too early to tell the exact number, she thinks it could be between 40-50 minutes.  Again, let me stress that number could change.
  • Christopher Nolan image Batman The Dark KnightI also asked Thomas about all the images and video that leaked from the set while they were filming on the streets around the world.  She told me that while a number of pictures have been shot from the set, there is “an awful lot people have not seen.”  She explained that a good deal of the sequences were filmed on soundstages, for which no set photos or leaks have emerged.
  • Regarding next summer’s Comic-Con (which takes place before The Dark Knight Rises opens), I mentioned that fans have been waiting for many years for the Nolan’s to visit San Diego and show some footage.  She took my words under advisement, but wouldn’t say either way if they will be there next summer.
  • Nolan revealed they have NOT started to edit the rest of the movie yet. They just finished the prologue – which needed to get done first.
  • The montage of footage after the opening six minutes showed new looks at Batman, Bane, Catwoman, Joseph Gordon Levitt, and some awesome new weapons and vehicles.
  • While Bane was a mighty presence on screen, the same cannot be said for his voice, which I struggled to understand at certain points in the film.  It remains to be seen if this was the final version of his voice or if it’s still a work in progress.  I asked producer Charles Roven about the voice and he wouldn’t say if it’s the final mix or still a work in progress.
  • Next Friday the first full trailer for The Dark Knight Rises will be released on the same day the IMAX prologue hits theaters.  However, don’t look for it online, as the Nolan’s like people to see their trailers for the first time in theaters, so I’d wager it will be officially released the following week on Yahoo or Apple.
  • Towards the end of the night I got to speak with Jonathan Nolan.  While we spoke a lot about his hit CBS show Person of Interest, I asked about the status of his sci-fi movie Interstellar.  He said he’s still developing it and hopes to be behind the camera soon.  He also said he’s working on some other features but wouldn’t get specific.

Final Worlds

I was completely blown away by the IMAX footage tonight.  If you live near an IMAX theater playing The Dark Knight Rises footage in front of Mission Impossible 4, do yourself a favor and see it.  You will be VERY impressed.

Finally, for those that want to know a bit more…you can check out The Dark Knight Rises viral campaign that just started. Perhaps it ties into the IMAX footage….


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