Director Matt Reeves discussed with Esquire yesterday how his upcoming film The Batman will not include the iconic origin story for the Caped Crusader. It seems as if this particular dead horse plot has been officially murdered.
Reeves talked with Esquire how he tackled taking on the story of this iconic character with the article noting that Reeves wanted to look at this origin story from a different angle:
“Reeves’s next issue was this. Sure, you could reboot Batman — it’s been done dozens of times since he first appeared in Detective Comics in 1939, almost certainly more. But would anyone have the stomach for yet another retelling of his origin story, from a slightly different angle? “We’ve seen it so many times,” Reeves says. “It’s been done too much. I knew we couldn’t do that.”
Reeves instead seemed to have looked at other comics and stories from Batman, including Batman: Year One by writer Frank Miller and artist David Mazzucchelli, showing a young Bruce Wayne figuring out how to become the hero fans know today. This, alongside other influences including Hollywood films from the 1970s such as The French Connection, Chinatown and Taxi Driver, gave Reeves his idea of how to tackle the story he wanted to tell without retreading old ground.
This idea should definitely be a welcome one to fans as the origin story of Batman has been done to death. On one hand, recovering an origin story seats a new adaptation on familiar terrain before launching onto potential new ground. On the other hand, these stories have been done so many times that fans are no longer interested in this recap. This could potentially slow down a film that is trying to give these characters new life, especially one whose most recent portrayal left a bit to be desired.
Reeves told Esquire that he feels that he has made the best possible version of this story, combining well-known elements with ones that have yet to be connected to the character, stating that “I’m very proud of it. I felt it was the best version of the story that we could possibly do to justify having another Batman. You always have to have a reason, and from the beginning that was the mission for me.”
The Batman will open in theaters on March 4th, 2022. With that release comes a departure from the well-worn story of Batman’s beginning and the start of new stories for this iconic hero.