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The Batman, which shut down production earlier this year due to COVID-19, will have a "humanist bent."
Director Matt Reeves recently detailed his ambitions behind the latest cinematic take on the DC character in an interview with Nerdist in which he also expressed fondness for the previous Batmanning of directors Tim Burton and Christopher Nolan.
"I wanted to do not an origin tale, but a tale that would still acknowledge his origins, in that it formed who he is," Reeves told Rosie Knight in an interview published Wednesday when discussing the upcoming Robert Pattinson-starring film. "Like this guy, he's majorly struggling, and this is how he's trying to rise above that struggle. But that doesn't mean that he even fully understands, you know. It's that whole idea of the shadow self and what's driving you, and how much of that you can incorporate, and how much of it you're doing that you're unaware of."
For Reeves, he would be "lost" as a director without connecting to the source material—even with a blockbuster-sized production like Batman—on a more personal level in some way.
"Some people are incredible choreographers and they know how to create an incredible visual dance, or all of that kind of stuff. And I love that kind of stuff. But at the end of the day, I have to understand it emotionally," he explained. The corruption at the center of classic Batman stories, he added, is "maybe more" resonant now than at any other time.
Also crucial in Reeves' decision to take on the project was his desire to avoid simply delivering "just another" Batman entry following the success of previous incarnations. Nolan's work, he said, "was incredible," while Burton landed a "singular" vision.
"I love it, I love it so much," he said, specifically stacking praise on Batman Returns and Michelle Pfeiffer's performance as Catwoman. "It's so incredible and she's so incredible in it. I just think it's such a beautiful movie. I love the Penguin stuff when he's going down the sewers as the baby. It's just like, wow. This is the beautiful thing about Tim Burton at his best in that way that he's got that connection into the fantastical that feels very, very personal."
Meanwhile, production on The Batman and a number of other highly anticipated projects isn't expected to resume in any capacity until the middle of May at the absolute earliest, per a recent update from Variety.
Fuck you, COVID-19.