Michael Keaton May Play Batman Again

Published on June 22, 2020

Michael Keaton might return as Batman. Who would’ve expected that news the last 20 year odd years or so? It’s quite a surprise. A nice surprise, of course. Keaton, who first played the caped crusader for Tim Burton in two classic movies, might co-star in The Flash.

The Flash 

The idea of Keaton returning to the role of Bruce Wayne is exciting. Less exciting is that it’s for the long troubled Flash movie, which will still reportedly star Ezra Miller despite a filmed incident in Iceland, in which Miller’s toxic behavior speaks for itself. In The Flash, which Andy Muschietti (It) is directing, Keaton would co-star as Batman. With Robert Pattinson playing Batman, how will The Flash pulloff Keaton’s appearance? Inter-dimensional travel, taking a page of the Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse playbook.

Wait, There’s More

What’s more intriguing than Keaton appearing in The Flash: Warner Bros. apparently wants him to serve as the Nick Fury of the DC Cinematic Universe. Keaton could co-star in Batgirl if a deal gets done, for example. Considering Warner Bros. pulled off a one-off with Joker, there’s definitely room for different interpretations of characters playing out simultaneously, similar to comic book storytelling.

The Batman Movie We Really Want to See

Keaton passed on playing Batman for a third time in Batman Forever. With Tim Burton no longer in the picture and Warner Bros. wanting to tone down the dark comic book movies and sell more toys, Keaton lost interest in playing the character. It was a shame Burton and Keaton didn’t get to complete a trilogy, although they ended things on a high note with Batman Returns. Sometimes less is more. 

Imagine, however, one more Batman movie with Keaton starring and Tim Burton at the helm. A return to the gothic spin on Gotham with an older, wiser and hardened Batman. Considering Keaton may come back to play Batman, is that idea outside the realm of possibility? 

Why Michael Keaton Was The Best Batman

Keaton was extraordinary as Bruce Wayne. Famously, comic book fans doubted the actor’s casting, but he proved them wrong. You don’t have to be a physical giant to make Batman a threat. There was something about Keaton’s eyes that made Batman a frightening hero, lurking in the shadows and fog like a monster. Outside of the suit, Keaton was every bit as charismatic and watchable. Keaton made Bruce Wayne as fun to watch as Batman. Even when the character became almost more of a supporting role in Batman Returns, Keaton brought tragedy, humor, and intensity to the role. To this day, it’s the most human and relatable depiction of the famous caped crusader. 

Keaton Looks Back at Batman

Years ago, Keaton said he wasn’t phased by other actors playing a role he broke ground with. As he explained to Shortlist: “No. Do you know why? Because I’m Batman. I’m very secure in that.” A baller response if there ever was one. Keaton has always looked back at his time fondly as the DC hero:

Tim changed, or started, everything. And I’m proud of the choice I made, in terms of how to play Batman. It’s probably easier now because Tim paved the way, and if I did anything to pave the way, I’m proud of that, too. I’ve never seen [a superhero movie] beginning to end. Oh actually, I saw the first Spider-Man – I thought that was really good. You can step into it more easily now, is my guess. Technically, [superhero movies] do everything for you. They create a world where all you’ve basically got to do is show up, not f*ck it up too much and you’ll come off OK.

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Jack Giroux is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily. Based in Los Angeles, he is an entertainment journalist who's previously written for Thrillist, Slash Film, Film School Rejects, and The Film Stage.

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