Why <i>The Dark Knight Rises</i> Didn't Film at Occupy Wall Street

News that The Dark Knight Rises wrapped filming spread yesterday, thanks to a blog post by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. That same day, New York City police raided Zuccotti Park, sending Occupy Wall Street protesters away for a few hours while the area was cleaned. It’s curious timing, considering the rumors that swirled a few weeks ago that Christopher Nolan might use the park as a location for the Warner Bros. film.

Speaking with Indiewire about his indie short Jesus Was a Commie, Matthew Modine, who plays the mysterious Nixon in The Dark Knight Rises, explained why the  director ultimately decided not to use the Occupy protest as a backdrop.

“The wisdom of Christopher Nolan and his incredible team was that, while it seemed like a good idea to give [the protestors] an opportunity for work, to give them money, it would send a terrible message,” he said. “At the end of the day, we’re making a movie. What’s happening down there is more important than that. To co-opt what’s happening there and around the country … we didn’t want to trivialize it. It was more important to respect what they’re doing than to do anything that could potentially trivialize the political situation downtown.”

The actor supports the OWS movement, but has no plans to visit for fear that it would distract from the bigger picture.

Speaking of the big picture, Modine remained tight-lipped on his Dark Knight Rises character. “I’m not allowed to talk about [the film], but there’s a lot of misinformation,” he said. “I don’t know who created it, but it’s kind of fun to have everybody speculating about it.”

The Dark Knight Rises, which opens July 20, 2012, also stars Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Morgan Freeman.

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