With a Comic-Con presentation set for this weekend, Warner Bros. has released four new The LEGO Batman Movie images. The film is a spin-off of the celebrated The LEGO Movie, directed by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord, who serve as producers on this film while co-director Chris McKay steps up and takes the reins as director. In the movie, Batman (Will Arnett) must fend off the Joker’s (Zach Galifianakis) hostile takeover, but in order to do so, he might have to learn to work with others.
USA Today had the new LEGO Batman Movie images along with new details on the Joker and Robin (Michael Cera), and it’s very different than what we’ve come to expect from these key, supporting characters in the Dark Knight’s life. For example, when it comes to Joker, this isn’t the chaos-loving, crown prince of crime. He’s got his own insecurities. Specifically, “The Joker sees himself on the same level as Batman, a peer, at the top of the game,” director Chris McKay says. “But Batman says that’s not the case, which sends Joker into a spiral trying to prove to Batman that he is indeed the greatest enemy.” It’s odd to think of the Joker trying to “prove” anything, but it’s a fun twist on the character, and I’m incredibly curious to hear what Galifianakis will bring to the vocal performance.
And the plans for Robin are even funnier. In the comics, Bruce Wayne adopted Robin/Dick Grayson after criminals murdered Grayson’s parents, who were trapeze artists. That’s a little dark for an animated family film, so they’re going with something more ridiculous: Dick Grayson “turns out to be a child that Batman’s alter ego, billionaire Bruce Wayne, accidentally adopts at a charity auction.” That’s fantastic.
“Robin is a super-positive kid who always sees the glass as half full. Really, at the end of the day, he just wants a hug,” McKay says. “Michael brings the sweetness and honesty.”
The way Robin joins up with Batman is equally heartwarming/silly:
Robin even breaks into Batman’s extensive and eclectic wardrobe and falls for a random Reggae Man costume, with a sparkly sequined cape and green glasses.
Robin modifies the gaudy garb, which becomes his own famed apparel — with possibly more sparkle than comic fans are used to. Batman adjusts to the new life, but his troubles are typified by his unwillingness to share the Batmobile front seat. Robin’s distracting cape-flapping doesn’t help.
And if this one-liner from McKay doesn’t make you eager to see The LEGO Batman Movie, nothing will:
“Lego Batman is About a Boy as directed by Michael Mann,” McKay says.
The film also features the voices of Rosario Dawson, Ralph Fiennes, and Mariah Carey. The LEGO Batman Movie opens in theaters on February 10, 2017.
Here’s the official synopsis for The LEGO Batman Movie:
In the irreverent spirit of fun that made “The LEGO® Movie” a worldwide phenomenon, the self-described leading man of that ensemble – LEGO Batman – stars in his own big-screen adventure. But there are big changes brewing in Gotham, and if he wants to save the city from The Joker’s hostile takeover, Batman may have to drop the lone vigilante thing, try to work with others and maybe, just maybe, learn to lighten up.