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Burton on Batman

TimBurton.jpgTim Burton has been talking about his experiences on Batman and what he thinks of the latest installment, and while there's nothing too indepth there are a couple of quotes that I find interesting.

The first is around the pressures of making a big film such as Batman was then, and still is, and how many irrelevant people have a say in the process. The second is about what he could have done with the Batman film, if he'd been allowed.

Perhaps the most interesting thing he says in the interview over at zeenz.nl through Batman-on-Film is about the influence over the film by people who don't really care:

"The more money that's spent on a movie, the more people get involved and the more you have to deal with business that doesn't actually have anything to do with the filmmaking. With the second Batman film [BATMAN RETURNS], I remember sitting with some people from McDonalds that wanted to know what The Penguin was going to look like, ‘Because we want to get our wrappers ready.‘ And then I had to answer we had to make the film first and did not know yet was he was going look like. And the fact is that they weren't going to like the way he was going to look anyway. He doesn't really fit in the Happy Meal mode. You get a lot of things like that when you enter the bigger budget things and it's quite unpleasant."

You don't really think of these pressures as an audience member, nor as a fan of cinema who craves information on the processes behind film-making. However it does sound as though he didn't have a lot of trouble pushing back on them whereas I've heard some directors who have to bow down to such pressures and agree to what these companies want from them.

McDonalds influencing the look of Batman for their Happy Meals? That is ridiculous.

Then he goes on to talk about the Christopher Nolan Batman and what that version means to his Batman. Rather than be precious and prideful, it seems Tim Burton really likes Batman Begins.

"The Christopher Nolan movie I thought was actually really good. He really captured the ‘real’ spirit that these kind of movies are supposed to have nowadays. When I did BATMAN 20 years ago, in 1988 or something, it was a different time in comic book movies. You couldn't go into that ‘dark side’ of comics yet. The last couple of years that has become acceptable and Nolan certainly got more to the root of what the Batman comics are about."

I thought that Batman was surprisingly dark at the time and that his Batman Returns film sold out on that a little and went back the other way. Perhaps that's down to outside pressures again.

However to imagine that he wanted to go darker and go back to the source - as much as I would have loved that to have happened I really can't see the current incarnation of Batman working back then, can you?

Seems though that he'll never do another Batman, even if Johnny Depp was to play the Joker.

"I don't think so. After the first two movies I went in to talk about a third one with Warner executives. And I realized halfway through that meeting that they really did not want me to do it. And I wasn't sure if I was interested myself. So I think I made my contribution to the Batman legacy and I just naturally moved on to other things."

Well personally I'm glad, the series did die a horrible death but it paved the way for Nolan to bring along his truly dark Batman to life, something we should be happy for. I really couldn't imagine a Burton Batman now, however much I love his original.

This article was posted using 3G Mobile Broadband as part of a product review.



I would of loved to see a third Batman outing from Burton, but as you stated Richard, in a way it was for the better that he left after Returns.I still can't choose a favourite out of Burton's Batman and Nolan's, but I always keep saying that Burton's is the best for entertainment and Nolan's is better for the story.

That reminds me, not that long until the Dark Knight arrives.

Glad to read this .. interesting stuff.

Yeah I think they are both two very different Batman films and can't really be compared, not now that you hear he really wanted to make it darker and just couldn't.

I'm also glad he's not returning. Can you imagine something in the vein of Sweeney Todd for a new Tim Burton directed Batman?


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