Matt Reeves' highly anticipated The Batman (2021) began filming late last month in London and the excitement is real. Several Twitter users stumbled upon filming locations in mid-January, which quickly sparked speculation into which Batman storylines the film would borrow from. Our first look at Robert Pattinson's Bruce Wayne arrived with a scene of Bruce riding a motorcycle. While nothing is for certain, many DC comic fans, myself included, were quick to point out that this look bore a striking resemblance to Scott Snyder's beloved run with Batman: Zero Year.
CREDIT: DC/Batman: Zero Year
Thursday evening, Matt Reeves delivered our first look at Robert Pattinson suited up as the Batman. The camera test included music by composer Michael Giacchino and featured Robert Pattinson's chiseled jaw and a bat symbol that appeared to be crafted out of the body of a gun.
The DC Extended Universe is still trying to find its niche, which lends itself to speculation about where The Batman will land among its blockbusters Wonder Woman (2017), Shazam! (2019), and the dark and gritty award-winning Joker (2019). Warner Brothers' R-rated Birds of Prey dominated its February opening weekend with a $33 million dollar domestic box-office. While it underperformed its $50 million dollar box-office expectations, it matched the opening weekend totals for Oscar contender Ford vs. Ferrari ($31 million domestic, November 2019) and made back a third of its production costs in a single weekend.
Speculation, mostly based off those mid-January filming location photos, suggest that we may see Gotham city in the 1990s. This would allow Reeves to develop a storyline unencumbered by Ben Affleck's tenure as the Caped Crusader. With Wonder Woman: 1984 premiering this year perhaps we will see a trend of era-specific stories, outside of our current time. It will be interesting to see whether Matt Reeves' interpretation matches the dark tone of Christoper Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy or if he'll create something entirely unique. As teased by The Batman co-writer Mattson Tomlin, it looks like we will be getting more of the detective side of Bruce Wayne's character arc.
What We Do Know
Last October, Matt Reeves formally announced that Zoë Kravitz would be joining Robert Pattinson's Bruce Wayne as the cat burglar Selina Kyle. Casting news also revealed that Bruce Wayne will be facing not one but two infamous Gotham villains, with Colin Farrell playing Oswald Cobblepot a.k.a The Penguin and Paul Dano playing Edward Nashton a.k.a The Riddler. Also announced was Jeffery Wright as Gotham's Detective James Gordon, Andy Serkis as Bruce Wayne's butler-turned-confidant Alfred Pennyworth, and nemesis Carmine Falcone portrayed by John Turturro.
The Batman is in theaters June 25, 2021.