Christian Bale in 'The Dark Knight Rises' & Henry Cavill in 'Man of Steel'. Photos courtesy of Warner Bros.
There is no "The Legend Ends" when there's money to be made ... and "The Avengers" to challenge.
Hot on the heels of rumors that Warner Bros. has scrapped Will Beall's "Justice League" script and is starting the project over from scratch comes word that the film is still very much a high priority at the studio -- and that "from scratch" might mean bringing in a tried and true superhero duo to make it work in time to take on "The Avengers 2" in Summer 2015 (and, in theory, "Star Wars: Episode VII," though we all know that J.J. Abrams, who took four years to make a "Star Trek" sequel, won't have it ready by then, right?).
Latino Review, who's been slinging super-scoops left and right lately, reports that Warner Bros. has brought in "Dark Knight" mastermind and "Man of Steel" producer Christopher Nolan to "completely take over the DCU [DC Comics Universe] ... so anything having to do with these superheroes goes through him now."
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Nolan, like Abrams, is a notoriously secretive fellow, so it's no surprise that he's "completely locked it down and it's gone radio silent over there." But Latino Review was still able to get an inkling of what's going on behind closed doors at the Hall of Justice.
As with this summer's "Man of Steel" (which apparently thrilled Warner Bros. suits at recent early screenings), Nolan will be "Godfathering-slash-producing" the "Justice League" project, with Zack Snyder coming on board to possibly direct. But the real kicker is that the studio is looking to bring back a tried and true superhero star to team up with a brand new one in the film.
Yes, "Justice League" is perhaps being shaped as a team-up for Christian Bale to reprise his role as Batman and join "Man of Steel" star Henry Cavill as Superman.
That makes for some pretty extreme fanboy wishful thinking. It also makes complete business sense, whether it’s true or not.
Warner Bros. doesn't have "Harry Potter" any more, and they've just wrapped up "The Dark Knight." They're feeling the pressure of Disney's "The Avengers" ready to take another bajillion dollars at the box office in a couple of years, as well as "Star Wars" poised to once again take over the galaxy. Would-be WB franchise kickstarters "Beautiful Creatures" and "Jack the Giant Slayer" have both tanked this year, and it's only early March.
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Warner Bros. is freaking out. They need a hit. And, as the Justice League's motto is "No Fear," the superhero team-up might indeed hold the key to a bright future, one in which the studio can truly compete (or at least co-exist) with the likes of "The Avengers" and "Star Wars."
WB is very happy with "Man of Steel," so apparently the Nolan/Snyder team works well. But in order for "Justice League" to really be a sure thing, they need to bring back the guy who starred in two superhero movies that grossed more than a billion dollars each in worldwide box office. They need Bale as Batman.
Sure, Bale let it be known last summer that "The Dark Knight Rises" was (most likely) going to make for his final gig as the Caped Crusader. But he also went on record as saying, well, never say never.
"My understanding is that this ["The Dark Knight Rises'] is the last one. I think it's appropriate, I think it's going out at the right time," said Bale in an interview with Empire Magazine. "But ... if Chris [Nolan] came to me with a script and said, 'You know what? There is another story' then I would love the challenge of making a fourth one work."
Christian Bale as Batman and Henry Cavill as Superman in a Christopher Nolan-produced (and possibly Zack Snyder-directed) "Justice League" movie? You'd go see that, right?
To quote Latino Review again, such a thing would indeed be "quite the muscular defense to Disney's juggernaut offense." But is it actually going to happen? Stay tuned, Justice Leaguers.
See the "Man of Steel' theatrical trailer...