The Dark Knight Film That Could Have Been
Both Frank Miller, the legendary comic writer, and Darren Aronofsky, acclaimed film director, wrote scripts for an adaptation of Batman: Year One in the early 2000’s, though neither film was ever produced.
A Re-Imagining of the Character
Following the release and bombing of Batman & Robin, Warner Bros. settled on reimagining the character of Batman, with several film scripts and ideas being suggested and worked on. One such project was the adaptation of the popular graphic novel that details Batman’s first days as a crimefighter.
Aronofsky and Miller collaborated on the project, an R-rated take on Batman which sounds right up both of their alleys. And while the film was never produced, the work certainly influenced future projects including Christopher Nolan’s trilogy that became the next series of the films.
A Look Into the Film
IGN has made a documentry called Batman: Year One – The R-Rated Reboot That Almost Was and in it, Frank Miller explains: “Darren wrote one version and I wrote one version. Neither got produced.”
Despite both tremendous talents tackling the project together, the film was eventually turned down, with Miller joking:
“It has to be agreed upon by the entire United States Congress before it proceeds. It’s Batman! So many people have to approve anything to do with a trademark of that value that the odds are that anything is going to be squashed.”
It Still Had an Impact on Future Films
Former Warner Bros. president of worldwide production, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, told IGN how the scripts may have affected future films like the Nolan trilogy, which had a much gritter tone that the previous films:
“I don’t remember what Chris [Nolan] did or didn’t read as he jumped in. But any time you do a draft like that, everybody reads that draft who comes aboard, right? So those ideas can filter in. The Anne Hathaway Catwoman, was it affected by the Aronofsky draft? I have no idea. I find that in the process of developing any big franchise, little ideas somehow find a way when they’re good of never dying, no matter how many drafts, no matter how many filmmakers. Somehow they keep coming back in.”
“I have no doubt that the exploration of Darren’s version impacted everything following it to some degree. Now you tell me how much. That’s a hard one.”
Check out the full documentary to learn more about the film was almost got to see.
New Coming Soon for the Next Batman Film
Speaking of Batman, this weekend marks the DC FanDome event, where we will certainly learn more about Matt Reeves’ upcoming take on the character, The Batman, starring Robert Pattinson as the Caped Crusader.
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