During an exclusive interview with Collider’s Steven Weintraub for the 15th anniversary of Cloverfield, Matt Reeves confirmed that The Batman sequel is still in the works, despite the chaos behind closed doors at DC Studios. The filmmaker also assured fans that the upcoming sequel would keep the focus on Robert Pattinson’s Dark Knight instead of putting the hero’s rogue gallery in the spotlight—which sets it apart from its predecessors.
While many versions of Gotham City have already shown up in theaters, Reeves’ The Batman is a unique take on the Dark Knight because it focuses more on the character’s interior universe, rather than on the spectacle of superhero battles. In fact, the whole movie is mostly an intellectual competition between Batman and the Riddler (Paul Dano). Reeves may have introduced iconic enemies to the film, many of which are broadly beloved—even by people who have never read a single comic book in their lives—but they never took the limelight away from Bruce Wayne.
Taking away from the titular character did happen with Christopher Nolan, which saw his Batman trilogy overtaken by Heath Ledger‘s Joker and Tom Hardy‘s Bane. Even the franchise that was kickstarted by Tim Burton is mostly remembered for Jack Nicholson‘s Joker, Danny DeVitto‘s Penguin, and even Jim Carrey‘s Riddler. Sure, Batman’s armor took the spotlight for Batman & Robin, but we can all agree Bat-nips are not the best way to call for attention. Fortunately, as Reeves tells us, he intends to make Pattinson’s vigilante the emotional core of his BatVerse—no armor nipples required. In the director’s words:
“To me, the thing that I really feel is that I also believe that Rob [Pattinson] is so special in the role. My goal has always been to do these point-of-view stories that allow the character to always be the emotional center of the story. Because a lot of times what happens is, after you do the first one, then suddenly other Rogues Gallery characters come in, and they kind of take over, and then Batman takes a backseat sort of character-wise, or emotionally.”
We still don’t know how—or if—Reeves‘ corner of the DC Universe will be connected with the 10-year story currently being developed by James Gunn and Peter Safran. Nevertheless, the filmmaker has a long-term plan of what he wants to do with Bruce Wayne and Gotham City, and it’s all about Pattinson’s character. That is why Reeves says, “I actually think that through the plan of what these stories are that I want to tell, there is an epic sort of sweep of the development of that character.”
Batman’s Rogue Gallery Can Be Explored in Spinoffs
While The Batman’s films will remain focused on Bruce Wayne, Reeves also has different plans for Gotham City. For instance, he’s currently working on The Penguin, an HBO Max miniseries starring Colin Farrell as the iconic umbrella-wielding mobster. As Reeves tells us, The Penguin starts shooting this year, and there are other projects that he wants to complete in BatVerse. So, while the theatrical releases remain focused on Bruce Wayne’s journey, there’s still plenty that Reeves can do to explore other iconic Gotham characters.
The gorgeous new limited-edition Cloverfield 4K Ultra HD SteelBook arrives on January 17, 2023. There’s no release window for The Batman sequel, but you can expect to read more from our interview with Reeves soon.