If you venture to see filmmaker Robert Eggers’ extremely weird (yet compelling) new film The Lighthouse in the coming weeks, you may get a sneak peek at Robert Pattinson’s take on Batman—albeit not from Pattinson himself. The actor landed the coveted role of the Caped Crusader in director Matt Reeves’ upcoming reboot The Batman, which means he’s currently in the midst of crafting a brand new take on the character. However, in teasing what fans might expect from this new Batman’s gravelly growl, Pattinson pointed to his Lighthouse co-star Willem Dafoe as inspiration.
Speaking with Access Hollywood (via EW), Pattinson claimed that Dafoe’s extremely sailor-y voice in The Lighthouse helped inspire his take on Batman:
“Willem’s voice in [The Lighthouse] was quite inspiring for it, to be honest,” he says. “It is pretty similar, the voice I’m gonna do, to Willem’s. I think Batman has a sort of pirate-y kind of voice. I think they’re really suited.”
Now is the time where it’s necessary to point out that Pattinson has a habit of taking the piss out of the press, and even flat-out making up things on the spot. Indeed, while appearing on The Today Show to promote his 2011 film Water for Elephants, Pattinson completely made up a story about witnessing a clown’s death the first time he ever went to the circus. Pattinson only later admitted he completely made the story up:
“I said those things. But I actually made the whole thing up,” he said. “It’s coming back to haunt me. I said it on some show. It was really early in the morning the day after the New York premiere. Someone asked me what my experience with the circus was and I was like, I have nothing interesting to say. I don’t know why I said that!”
If you’ve seen The Lighthouse, you know that Dafoe’s voice is extremely distinct, and some would say a bit over the top. It’s very Captain Ahab, and I’d personally be a bit shocked if Pattinson’s Batman sounded like a old timey sailor. Moreover, if you watch the interview, it’s the interviewer who suggests Dafoe’s voice as an inspiration in the first place, and the actor may have just taken the suggestion and run with it. So I have a feeling the High Life actor was merely having some fun here, but who knows, perhaps he’s genuinely letting us in on what to expect from The Batman a bit.
In reality, Pattinson can’t really say anything revelatory about The Batman. Not only is the Warner Bros. film under intense secrecy, but the actor’s still in the middle of shooting Christopher Nolan’s new film Tenet and doesn’t start production on The Batman until early next year, so only preliminary conversations and preparations have gotten underway.
So I suppose we’ll find out when The Batman hits theaters in 2021 if Pattinson was really inspired by Willem Dafoe’s character in The Lighthouse, or if he was just having some fun. For now, if you need an excuse to go and see The Lighthouse—which is a super duper strange but actually kind of fun movie—go for it.
Get a preview of what may or may not be Pattinson’s Batman voice in the Lighthouse video below: