For much of this summer, people speculated about whether or not Christopher Nolan would be willing to make a third Batman film. We asked Aaron Eckhart and Michael Caine, and they both said the same thing: Nolan is on vacation and he hasn’t made a decision about the third film. Well, one of those things has changed: he’s back from vacation. Now, about that third movie…
The LA Times finally asks the man behind Batman the question we’ve all been wondering about–at the very end of its exclusive interview.
LA Times: Could you see actually yourself not making the third Batman film?
NOLAN: Well … let me think how to put this. There are two things to be said. One is the emphasis on story. What’s the story? Is there a story that’s going to keep me emotionally invested for the couple of years that it will take to make another one? That’s the overriding question. On a more superficial level, I have to ask the question: How many good third movies in a franchise can people name? [Laughs.] At the same time, in taking on the second one, we had the challenge of trying to make a great second movie, and there haven’t been too many of those either. It’s all about the story really. If the story is there, everything is possible. I hope that was a suitably slippery answer.
(Warner Bros: Ok, good story needed…Got it.) Somewhere at the studio. a group of assistants have also no doubt been drafted into finding examples of successful third movies in franchises. May we suggest a few? Austin Powers in Goldmember, Return of the Jedi, Die Hard With A Vengeance…Even Batman Forever wasn’t that bad. Convinced yet?
Meanwhile, Nolan also talks about what it’s been like to be associated with a film that’s made nearly $1 billion worldwide and close to $600 million domestic (the last $100 million really is the hardest).
[LAT]: “The Dark Knight” is closing in on $1 billion. How do you get your arms around that kind of success?
NOLAN: I can’t get my arms around it, to be quite frank. It’s mystifying. It’s terrific but at the same time it’s a little abstract, the numbers are so big. The biggest thrill for me would be, with the number of people who have gone to see the film, how “The Dark Knight” stood on the shoulders of the first film, how we were able to build the audience up and build the story up from the first film. That was really exciting to see. We were all pretty happy with the performance of the first film but so we really didn’t know, “Where does it go from there?” For it to become such a phenomenon is extraordinarily gratifying. I mean, I’ve spent now like six years or something working on Batman films. It becomes an important part of your life; you become very obsessive about it, and it’s pretty fun when there are other people sharing your obsession and going to see the film a dozen times or whatever…
And imagine how much fun it would be if he spent a few more years on a third film. Huh?
The rest of the interview, in which Nolan talks about the inspiration behind many of the film’s key scenes is also very interesting, (we love the LA Times) so we highly recommend you click through and read the whole thing.
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