- George Clooney carefully chose his next films after the failure of 1997’s “Batman & Robin.”
- He next starred in “Out of Sight,” “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” and “Three Kings.”
- Clooney told Variety that the three films, which did moderately well, all had great screenplays.
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If it weren’t for the box-office and critical failure of 1997’s “Batman & Robin,” we may not have received George Clooney‘s turn into a serious, Academy Award-winning actor.
“After ‘Batman & Robin’ came out, and it was a big bomb â€” you learn from your failures; you don’t learn from successes,” Clooney shared in an “Actors on Actors” Variety interview with Michelle Pfeiffer.
“I thought, I have to focus really on the script. It’s not just about my part; it’s about the whole movie,” he added.
“Batman & Robin,” which followed the success of 1995’s “Batman Forever,” became notoriously known as one of the worst â€” if not the worst â€” Batman movies because of its cheesy dialogue and dumbing down of the Dark Knight.
Director Joel Schumacher explained during the film’s commentary the inspiration behind his version of the iconic character and noted some of the pressures he faced to make the film a commercial success.
Schumacher said he was interested in exploring a darker, younger “Year One” Batman.
However, Schumacher said there was “a desire from the corporate point of view that we make as kid-friendly a Batman as possible.” There was also “an enormous pressure” to create more inventions in the film that could be turned into toys.
“I had hoped very much, after the success of #BatmanForever, that the studio would allow me to do Frank Miller’s comic book, Batman: Year One, which one of my favorite Frank Miller comics.”
— Kirsten (@KirstenAcuna) January 10, 2021
Over the years, Clooney has acknowledged he “sucked” in the comic-book movie.
The Academy Award winner also keeps a photo of himself as the Caped Crusader on his office wall as “a cautionary reminder of what can happen when you make movies solely for commercial reasons.“
As a result of the film’s failure, Clooney revealed he carefully chose his next movies, not caring as much if they would become huge box-office successes.
“The next three films I did were ‘Out of Sight,’ ‘O Brother, Where Art Thou?’ and ‘Three Kings,’ which were really great screenplays,” Clooney said. “They didn’t all do very well financially, but they were all critically well received.”
“It became clear to me that you can make a bad film out of a good script, but you can’t make a good film out of a bad script,” he added.
Clooney said moving forward in his career he gravitates toward films that truly interest him.
The actor currently stars in Netflix’s original film, “The Midnight Sky,” which Clooney also directed.
As for that Batman movie Schumacher wanted to do back in the ’90s?
Over 20 years later, director Matt Reeves is finally getting a chance to explore a younger, grittier Caped Crusader in 2022’s “The Batman,” starring Robert Pattinson. It seems at least somewhat influenced by Frank Miller’s “Batman: Year One.“