Later this month, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” director Zack Snyder will bring an all-new, older version of the Dark Knight to film. In a recent interview, he explained the difference between his and Christopher Nolan’s versions of Batman, “The Dark Knight Returns'” influence on the film and more.
“This is a total and opposite reality from the Chris Nolan movies,” Snyder told FilmInk. “It’s another universe, so we couldn’t hire Christian Bale if we wanted to, because he doesn’t exist in our world. Maybe we could hire him to play another part. We did talk about that briefly. I just wanted to hire Christian to play another part to make that obvious. Christian could play, like, Alfred with age makeup. No! Of course not. But you know what I mean. Even people at the studio would say, ‘Who are you getting from the other movies?’ And I was like, ‘Hey, come on guys, let’s all understand, it’s a different world.’ In the Batman universe that Chris Nolan created, Superman would have a hard time existing. That that’s why we did a reboot on the universe, so we could allow these characters to exist together. We needed to do that to have Batman exist in this world.”
Unlike Nolan’s Batman, Snyder drew a lot of influence from the Dark Knight’s history in comics. “I truly like movies that are self-aware, and that are constantly reminding me that they’re movies while immersing me deeper into them. Every part of the movie is an illusion…every single part. It’s fun for me to play with the icons and the visual language of movies to make people buy into these worlds,” he explained.
“I’m a huge fan of ‘The Dark Knight Returns,’ but this movie is not ‘The Dark Knight Returns,'” he added. “Frank [Miller] and I share a lot of aesthetic interest, and certainly his portrayal of an old Batman in that novel inspired me, because it rings true. That’s how I approached it, through that prism of what meets my standard of cool superhero.”
As to how much “Batman v Superman” will set up “Justice League” and the rest of the DC Cinematic Universe, he said, “I tried to have as much fun with [the expanded universe] as possible, maybe because I love comic books and I love the potential for that kind of madness. We’ve been talking a lot about where we’re going to go with ‘Justice League’…we kind of knew what Justice League was going to be pretty early on, which allowed us to lay the groundwork in a lot of ways. When you see the movie, you’ll really get a sense that there’s a second layer coming, and filtering down through the film, as far as what’s possible. We slowly introduce the other characters and how they play and what is their purpose and where they are in the world.”