I’m sure that heading has been the reaction of many casual and hardcore Batman & Twilight fans. Not in a million years would you associate Edward Cullen with Bruce Wayne. Well if the swarm of reports are true, Robert Pattinson is set to don the batsuit.
On the surface this just doesn’t feel right. Fanboys are already loosing it on message boards with the thought of this becoming a very real possibility. The Matt Reeves upcoming The Batman movie has already endured multiple changes in production, most notably Ben Affleck resigning from the role of Batman, leading to the opening in the first place.
Does anything about Pattinson’s look or skills say, Batman? Let’s see. Pattinson is of a slender build, but I’m sure he can bulk up and look fitting for the role, so that isn’t entirely an issue. His chiseled jaw does resemble that of Bruce Wayne in comics also. The factors that go against him might be his age (33). Depending on the exact portrayal of this Batman, he might be too young for the part. On the contrary Christian Bale was 31 when he starred in Batman Begins.
So if the looks and age factor can aren’t a holdup, what is? Twilight.
It’s unfair to label Pattinson as the Twilight guy. It’s been over seven years and a long list of movie roles that Pattinson has assembled since then. Yet, there are many people out there that know him for the Twilight films, which is known for having a hardcore passionate fanbase.
To his credit, Pattinson took the lesser traveled way to cementing his legitimacy in the film world. He was red-hot coming off Twilight. He could have easily gone for major franchise blockbuster films, yet he chose to pursue small art house indies.
WHY HE’S AN INTERESTING CHOICE:
Pattinson faded from the spotlight and proved he had the acting chops that might not have been displayed during his time working on Twilight. Starring in lesser known movies such as Life, The Lost City of Z, Good Time, High Life and many more. What Pattinson established was that he is a versatile actor that can tackle various genres and characters.
Ben Affleck is a major name, so was Val Kilmer, George Clooney and Michael Keaton when they donned the cape. There is a case to be made that Christian Bale’s career skyrocketed him to the A-list since he starred as Batman, however, Bale wasn’t an unknown previously to it. Pattinson is in a similar situation that Bale was. A known actor (especially within the Twilight community), but not a major household name. He’s coming into this project as someone who has been out of the spotlight a bit. So he’s fresh that way.
If age can be looked like as a detriment as being too young to play Bruce Wayne, then it can also be looked at as a positive. He has a an opportunity to grow with the character. It be a lot different if he was 43, here age would come into being a factor in handling a physical role like this.
The misconception about Pattinson is that offscreen he appears shy, timid, maybe a bit aloof. He isn’t throwing himself into Hollywood gossip. He appears to be a fairly private guy. That works in his favor actually. It naturally presents an element of mystery, fittingly for a role of Batman.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT:
Assuming that it’s down to the final contract details, Pattinson will assume the legendary role of Bruce Wayne/Batman. Big shoes to fill. What works in his favor is that he has a great visionary running the show, in Reeves. His success with the Planet of the Apes and Cloverfield franchises gives hope and confidence in knowing that this guy knows what he’s doing and has proven to develop a unique world for his characters.
It seems that anyone who has been fortunate to play Batman has received the immediate venom of negativity. Pattinson is facing it and about to hear more of it. The truth is that we don’t know what he will be like. He can be bad or great. Time will tell.
It’s in everyones best interest to give him a fair chance to succeed. I remember Gal Gadot, Ben Affleck, and Hugh Jackman’s castings being criticized for either not being satisfactory for the fans or in Jackman and Bale’s case for being fairly unknown. How did all those turn out? Pretty good, I’d say. Now people are clamoring saying that Jackman is irreplaceable. They won you over by being good at what they do. Pattinson has the same opportunity.
As time passes and the film gets closer to shooting and release, the emotional reactions will dissipate. Ultimately it’s the story that we should be more concerned about, not the actors. If the movie is bad and doesn’t connect with audiences, it won’t matter who played Batman. The major responsibility falls on Reeves. Let the coach pick his quarterback. He’s going with Pattinson. You have to respect the choice, knowing that he’s got a vision for this production that no fan really knows about.
Overall, Pattinson is an unlikely and seemingly unpopular choice, but definitely a unique and out-of-the-box one. It’s intriguing not knowing what to expect. If history says anything, it’s sure pointing to Pattinson succeeding in the role as his predecessors have. Trust what you’ve seen with Pattinson on-screen. The guy is very talented and committed to his roles.
The fanboy in me would have gone with with a shortlist that included: Ryan Gosling, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds, Aaron Taylor-Johnson with a wildcard in Josh Hartnett. Pattinson sure is that wildcard. I never associated him with this role, mainly due to me not thinking he’d be interested in it.
The ball is now in Pattinson’s hands to make the shot count. I don’t know if I’m a fan of it yet or not, but I’m intrigued in seeing what will happen.