How do you top the Joker? More importantly, how do you top Heath Ledger’s career defining performance of the Joker? That’s a tough question to answer, and it’s a question Christopher Nolan must have been asking himself ever since The Dark Knight premiered to record-setting box office earnings.
As we now know the main villain of The Dark Knight Rises is Bane and he’s being brought to life by Tom Hardy. The luchador mask wearing, venom-juicing villain was an interesting choice and it’s a decision that’s been polarizing fans online. Unfortunately, a lot of the anti-Bane sentiment probably stems from his terrible depiction in Batman & Robin, a film most Batman fans would like to believe never happened. But while the Joker is obviously Batman’s arch nemesis, the only one to ever have broken the Bat, is Bane (Editor’s note, see Batman: Knightfall). And judging by the recent teaser poster above, we’re gonna see this Bat get broken.
In a recent interview with the L.A. Times, Nolan discusses, why Bane?
I didn’t know him very well. David Goyer got me a bunch of stuff on him and we looked into him. I only knew him by name, I wasn’t familiar with his back story. He’s a very cool character. And getting an actor like Tom to take it on, you know you’re going to get something very special. Tom is somebody who really knows how to put character into every gesture, every aspect of his physicality in the way that great actors can. He’s a very, very physical actor. He transforms himself and it’s there in every movement. He’s not afraid to look at a character from the outside as well as the inside so there’s a deep psychological branch to the character but also a very, very specific awareness of how he’s going to use his body and his appearance to express that character too. Christian is like that too, very much.
With Bane, the physicality is the thing. With a good villain you need an archetype, you know, you need the extreme of some type of villainy. The Joker is obviously a particular archetype of diabolical, chaotic anarchy and has a devilish sense of humor. Bane, to me, is something we haven’t dealt with in the films. We wanted to do something very different in this film. He’s a primarily physical villain, he’s a classic movie monster in a way — but with a terrific brain. I think he’s a fascinating character. I think people are going to get a kick out of what we’ve done with him.
He only briefly mentions what I find to be a fascinating element to Bane, he’s no dummie. He may be a lot, and I mean, a lot of brawn but Bane’s got plenty of brains and I’m excited to see how they implement that part of his character.
Nolan then goes on to discuss why the eight year time jump from the end of The Dark Knight,
It will make a lot more sense to people when they see the film. But it’s not a great mystery — it’s the jumping-off point for the film — but it’s hard for me to articulate it. I think the mood at the beginning of the film will make a lot of sense. If I had to express it thematically, I think what we’re saying is that for Batman and Commissioner Gordon, there’s a big sacrifice, a big compromise, at the end of the ‘The Dark Knight’ and for that to mean something, that sacrifice has to work and Gotham has to get better in a sense. They have to achieve something for the ending of that film — and the feeling at the end of that film — to have validity. Their sacrifice has to have meaning and it takes time to establish that and to show that, and that’s the primary reason we did that. It’s a time period that is not so far ahead that we would have to do crazy makeup or anything — which I think would be distracting — but it gave them something to get their teeth into, particularly Christian in terms of [portraying] this guy who has been frozen in this moment in time with nowhere to go. He really has done an incredible job figuring out how to characterize that and express that.
To bring an end to this incredible Batman saga Nolan has contructed, jumping ahead in time makes perfect sense. If we were to witness every single adventure and foe Batman’s had to deal with since the Joker we’d be looking at a 10, maybe 15 film series. That’s why we have hundreds and hundreds of Batman comics as opposed to movies.
Personally, I am STOKED to see The Dark Knight Rises. I’ve got faith Nolan will not eff this up and I bet when we’re leaving the theatre early in the morning on July 20th 2012 we’ll be content with his saga’s conclusion. Hell, I’m guessing some of us we’ll be lining up to see it again!
Make sure you head over to the L.A. Times to read the entire interview.
Have you been happy with the choice of Bane as villain? Did Nolan’s comments quell any concerns you might have had?
Source: Geek Tyrant