EXCLUSIVE – The Joker and Two Face by Lee Bermejo for BOF!

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From 2005…

I recently interviewed artist Lee Bermejo.  Lee was awesome enough to exclusively provide BOF with some art of his take on how The Joker and Two Face should look in upcoming Batman films.  Check it out!

Lee on Harvey Dent/Two Face…

I like the idea of Harvey Dent being more like a typical multiple personality case (if there is such a thing as typical) in that when one personality is in control, the other no longer exists on the surface. When his personality shifts into Two-Face, his entire manner of speaking and dress would change. I definitely wanted to ditch the whole “split” costume thing as I thought it looked ridiculous in BATMAN FOREVER. To me it’s much more effective and sinister to have him wear clothing that reflects his scarred side while still staying fairly realistic. A ratty, stained, crumpled coat..a torn shirt…basically stuff that he could have stolen from some homeless man. As Two Face, he is completely a reflection of the depravity and animalistic side of man. When he shifts back to Harvey he is still partly the man he once was, but completely dependent on his coin to make decisions in his life. In essence, his coin is like the full moon to a werewolf…although I imagine Harvey would live in complete denial of his alter ego’s existence.

This drawing is based on Denzel Washington, although it may be hard to tell due to the angle with which I have chosen to portray him. I know that the popular choices for Two-Face are Guy Pierce and Jude Law but I personally felt that Denzel would give a little something different and exciting to the role. He is by far one of my favorite actors working today and anyone who wants to see an interesting “split-personality” role should check out TRAINING DAY.

On a personal note, I looked at a lot of scar tissue and burn victim reference for this image – not something I would recommend as a fun activity to pass your time. I tried to make the scarring on Two-Face as real looking as possible while still trying to infuse some of the comic book sensibilities. In reality, his left eye would be completely gone, but I think you have to take a bit of creative license with these characters. After all, there is a reason these comic characters were interesting enough to be turned into movies.

Lee on The Joker…

The most interesting thing about the Joker for me was always the mystery that surrounded the character. He is a bit like Hannibal Lector in the sense that it isn’t so important in SILENCE OF THE LAMBS to know where he came from. It’s what he IS that makes the character amazing. In many respects, The Joker is a serial killer. His profile fits perfectly and I’m really hoping that Nolan and Goyer play him more as such instead of going for the over the top, comedic opportunities they approached the Joker with in the 1989 BATMAN.

Visually, I like the idea of the character being played a lot darker and more disturbing as well. It’s difficult to realistically explain why the guy would have a huge grin on his face all the time. This is why I came up with the idea to actually scar his face to mirror the Joker smile. I remember seeing some police photos of the Black Dhalia and being genuinely disturbed by how her face was cut to look like a killer smile. After all, if this character was truly a crazy maniac why wouldn’t he do this to himself? Add a little smeared lipstick, white face paint, and purple eye-shadow and you have yourself one demented looking dude. I also gave him some scarring around the eyes to mirror clown makeup a little more. I don’t know about you, but clowns have always been a bit scary to me (the John Wayne Gacey angle doesn’t help). As far as clothing, maybe push the character a little more in the Tyler Durden direction. Give him a wardrobe that could be a little over the top but not look completely fabricated and silly.

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Bill
A life-long Batman fan, Bill "Jett" Ramey is the founder of BATMAN ON FILM. His passions include Dallas Cowboys football (fan since birth/season ticket holder since 2000), Elvis Presley, rock-and-roll, cold beer, dive bars, the city of Austin, his summer house in Minnesota, the University of Texas Longhorns...and BATMAN! He resides in the great state of Texas with his lovely wife, his youngest son, and 1.5 Boston Terriers.