The Labor Day 2019 BOF Mailbag

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Will I need to drink a couple of beers/drinks before or after I see JOKER?

JETT SAYS: Play it safe and do both. 🍺🍹🥃🥂

If you could see other solo [DC Comics] villain films, which ones would you want?

JETT SAYS: I don’t think these “Black Label” DC films are restricted to villains only, but I’ll say that Lex Luthor is a character and there are many different ways you could do a Luthor solo movie ala JOKER.  Though the character isn’t a villain, I’d also love to see THE SPECTER in a live-action DC movie.

When you spoke to Michael Uslan about whether or not WB would ever put Batman on TV AND in movies [at the same time], he said, “the studio seems to think so, and they are pursuing that.” This sounds to me that we will get a live-action Batman TV show which excites me, but I know that is something you’ve been wary of. If it does happen, what would you like to see them do with a TV show that either hasn’t been done in the films or can’t be done in the films?

JETT SAYS: Let me clarify/explain what Mr. Uslan meant (CLICK HERE for my full interview with Mr. Uslan).  He was referring to the fact that Warner Bros. is easing up a bit on the use of Batman on TV in shows like GOTHAM, BATWOMAN, and TITANS.  Based on what I know, that’s about as far as they are willing to go with the use of Batman on TV and Batman on film is still the priority.  So, I don’t see an full-on Batman TV series happening anytime soon.

With that said, if they did do a Batman TV series it should be something that would air on HBO, Netflix, F/X, AMC, etc. and be produced with a decent-sized budget.  I’m not sure about the tone, etc., but it definitely needs to be a serious take on the subject matter — perhaps with a realistic and gritty vibe.

JETT SAYS: I don’t think they’ve painted themselves in a corner at all.  When it comes to Matt Reeves’ THE BATMAN, The Joker isn’t in it.  Also, if Reeves uses the character in a future sequel, that won’t happen until at least 5 or maybe even 10 years from now.

Look, the general audience really doesn’t care about different versions of characters and continuity.  If a film is good, they’ll go see it  — that’s the bottom line.

Should I get drunk when Hurricane Dorian comes ashore, or should I face it sober?

JETT SAYS: As someone who has lived near the Texas Gulf Coast my entire life and has faced server hurricanes/tropical storms in my life — including direct hits by hurricanes Ike and Harvey recently — my advice to you is this…

 

Does Bruce Wayne have a special gadget in his belt or bag of tricks to pull this storm Dorian away from us in South Florida?

JETT SAYS: He’s Batman, so I’m sure he does.  The only problem is that he’s a fictional character. 😢 Stay sage Daniel!

JETT SAYS: Robert Pattinson is still Batman and will be there will filming commences at some point in the first quarter or half of 2020.

If JOKER is successful, do you think it will have any impact on how the character is portrayed in comics and movies in the future? Not in terms of connections or continuity, but in terms of tone, aesthetics, and characterization?

JETT SAYS: I doubt it.  Heath Ledger’s performance in THE DARK KNIGHT is legendary and really didn’t affect The Joker in the comics.  Plus, despite the fact he wasn’t “permawhite,” his characterization was pretty spot-on “Joker.”

How grounded do you think Reeves’ approach with THE BATMAN (and possible movies thereafter) will be? More in vein with the hyper-realism approach that Nolan went with or do you think, for lack of a better term, more “comic booky?”

JETT SAYS: I do not think Reeves will do the “hyperrealistic” thing as Chris Nolan did with THE DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY.  With that said, I do think he’ll go with a grounded approach as opposed to the fantastical.

What do you see the Batmobile looking like?

JETT SAYS: Um, the Batmobile.

Since the last two cinematic Batmobiles were very “tank-ish,” if you will, I suspect Reeves’ will be sleeker and more car than military-like.

I’m also interested in seeing if they include other Bat-vehicles besides a car.

If [THE BATMAN] is successful both critically and financially, do you think it will prompt production of a new Superman film (of any form)?  I’ve heard rumors of JJ Abrams *maybe* tackling the Big Blue Boy Scout again. Do you think there is any truth to those rumors?

JETT SAYS: At some point in the future, Warners will roll the dice on another Superman movie.  I just don’t think it’s a priority for them right now.  Let’s be honest, OK?  They simply haven’t had a lot of luck with Superman on film since SUPERMAN II back in 1981.

As far as the JJ Abrams rumors, I think that’s nothing more than pure speculation by fans.

JETT SAYS: The casting process is underway (and has been). With JOKER coming out in a month, I don’t see anything being announced until after it’s run.

I have an opinion but I’ll try to phrase it as a question: Everything suggests JOKER is going to be a fantastic film but I can’t help feeling if they don’t in some way suggest the character will become the archenemy of Batman (that we all know and love). Are they just riding on the coat-tails of a very recognizable and loved brand to make what would have been probably just a very good indie film reach a greater audience than it normally would have?

JETT SAYS: I need to be careful with my answer here because, well, I know the answer to your question/opinion.  I’ll put it this way: Don’t go in expecting JOKER to allude to this version of the character becoming a Gotham City supervillain, OK?

As far as the reason for this movie — i.e. using The Joker to tell an original film story — is not a gimmick to bring in a bigger audience.  Director Todd Phillips wanted to make a comic book movie that’s really not a “comic book movie,” do something new and original, and WB greenlit his project after his pitch.

Its been months since you said casting announcements are “imminent”. Still nothing. Any update when we will finally start hearing something?

JETT SAYS: When I said “imminent,” that’s relative sir.  The casting process is — and has been — taking place and it’s very likely several actors have already signed on for roles in addition to Robert Pattinson.  Patience is a virtue.

What how much design would you bet goes into Matt Reeves depiction of Gotham City? Scale of 1-10:

1 being mostly shooting cities with low changes to the “look” (ala Nolan’s TDKR)

5 being a mix of both (ala B89 & BB)

10 being mostly soundstages with a heavy emphasis on gothic design (ala BF/B&R)

JETT SAYS: 4.

Despite all the “JOKER is standalone” but now even the director is suggesting a real possibility of a sequel if it’s a hit.  What are your thoughts on a sequel, would that be disappointing for you?

JETT SAYS: A lot of those quotes from Todd Phillips were taken out of context.  He was talking more about simply working with Joaquin Phoenix again, not specifically a sequel to JOKER.  Trust me on this: A sequel is pointless based on the story of JOKER.  Also, when has Phoenix ever done a sequel?  He ain’t that kind of actor.

Rather than having Penguin as a major villain that Batman fights, would you be interested in seeing him portrayed in a movie where he’s used as the “puppetmaster” pulling the strings behind-the-scenes? Would you be interested in Man-Bat and Clayface appearing in Batman movies or do you prefer the “realistic” tone of Nolan’s films?

JETT SAYS: 1) How do you know that’s not how The Penguin will be portrayed in THE BATMAN?

2) I love Batman’s rogues’ gallery and it’s the best — by far — in comics.  However, I have zero desire to see either Man-Bat or Clayface in a live-action, “serious,” Batman movie.  About as far as I’ll go with the fantastical is Mr. Freeze.

And no Batman in space dammit.

Do you think that Matt Reeves will go for the black Batsuit or the grey Batsuit??? A muscle anatomy or tech suit? I know it’s still early to tell but what are your thoughts and what would you like to personally see? I honestly think Rob Pattinson will be AMAZING as Batman!

JETT SAYS: I have no idea really.  I think he’ll go for something we haven’t seen before, be black on gray, and will NOT include tights/spandex.

As far as what I’d like to see, check out this article I wrote a few months ago.

When The Joker appears in what will hopefully be a trilogy [staring with THE BATMAN], will Joaquin Phoneix be the clown or will they get someone else? After BIRDS OF PREY and THE SUICIDE SQUAD, what’s the next film Margot Robbie will appear as Harley?

JETT SAYS: Let me say this again: Unequivocantly, Joaquin Phoenix will not play The Joker in one of Matt Reeves’ Batman movies and JOKER and THE BATMAN are not connected in any way.

 

 

 

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Lifelong Batman fan Bill "Jett" Ramey is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Batman-On-Film.com. His passions include Dallas Cowboys football, Elvis Presley, Rock music, cold beer, dive bars, the University of Texas Longhorns, and of course, Batman. He resides in the great state of Texas with his lovely wife ("Announcer Rachel") and his .5 Boston Terrier.