"The Dark Knight Rises" is due in theaters around the globe next week. As visionary director Christopher Nolan and Oscar-winning star Christian Bale explain to media outlets worldwide, Batman's new nemesis Bane is the superhero's all-time, ultimate test.
The picture marks superstar Christian Bale’s first appearance in the ageless, iconic suit and cowl as an Oscar winner (The Fighter). The A-lister whom Morgan Freeman referred to as, “‘a wonderful chameleon,’” has now played the caped crusader in more feature films than any other actor. Five days short of six months after Christopher Nolan captured his first shot on May 19, 2011—a more-than-moderately long shoot, even by epic, superhero standards—actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who co-starred with Leonardo DiCaprio in Nolan’s mind-bending hit Inception and plays John Blake a tough, no-nonsense Gotham City street cop in Rises, announced via his “hitrecordjoe” Tumblr that principal filming wrapped on November 14, 2011, after Nolan and crew endured a grueling, half-year, location shoot, primarily in Pittsburgh and New York City.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt told the press during the Dark Knight Rises pre-release, media blitz, “‘It feels real. I think that’s a hallmark of Chris’ filmmaking. He doesn’t do a lot of green screen, digital, cartoon nonsense . . . you can tell this stuff is real. There really were thousands of people outside the Stock Exchange.’”
Nolan and his team of editors and artistic and technical directors; along with effects supervisors and staff, spent more than seven months in post-production on the film to make certain it looks and feels to the audience as epically real as possible, and in exactly one week from today, on July 20, 2012, Rises hits theaters nationwide, its first showing slated for 12:01 a.m. EST, Fandango confirms.
Longtime Batman franchise king Warner Bros. Pictures'; industry-clout-climbing Legendary Pictures'; as well as Christopher Nolan’s and his wife, producer Emma Thomas’s Syncopy Films' The Dark Knight Rises is what filmmaker Christopher Nolan calls the “great ending” he says "every great story deserves." Nolan and his inspired casting directors assembled an all-star, international, award-winning ensemble, including Oscar winner Bale in his third outing as Bruce Wayne/Batman; the venerable two-time Oscar winner Michael Caine (The Cider House Rules; Hannah and Her Sisters) as Alfred Pennyworth, also for a third time; Oscar winner Morgan Freeman (Million Dollar Baby) as Lucius Fox, reprising his Dark Knight role; Gary Oldman in his third turn as Commissioner Jim Gordon; Academy Award nominee Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married) as Catwoman/Selina Kyle; Oscar winner Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose), as Miranda Tate; Gordon-Levitt, as Blake; and Inception’s Tom Hardy as Batman’s newest, deadliest archenemy, Bane.
PLOT SYNOPSISThe Dark Knight Rises explodes into action exactly eight years after Batman banished himself into exile, following his assumption of guilt for the death of Gotham’s ‘white knight’ Harvey Dent. Bale’s Batman believed he was acting in the best interest of his beloved city’s welfare. Crime in Gotham indeed slowed to a grinding halt, as the anti-crime Dent Act proved effective for several years.
But Gotham is about to change forever with the appearance of a sexy, burgling cat with dark plans for Gotham, as well as Bane, a sociopathic terrorist, the archvillain Christopher Nolan has repeatedly called “terrifying." The director has characterized this vile, monster of a man as the first Batman antagonist in history “who can goe toe-to-toe with him [Batman], and you don’t know who’s going to win, physically.’”
Bale has described the villain for The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette as uniquely blessed with an overwhelmingly evil sense of timing, saying, “‘He’s arriving in Gotham at a time when Bruce Wayne is at his weakest . . . He’s weakened physically. He’s weakened mentally and spiritually, as well, and at that moment, Bane chooses to attack Gotham. He’s the first adversary we’ve seen in any of Chris Nolan’s Batman movies who can physically dominate Batman.’”
Christopher Nolan told the Post-Gazette he has fallen in love with IMAX cameras, saying, “For me, IMAX is all about, it’s the best possible quality image when you film with their cameras and you project that film in their theaters with those huge screens.” ‘What I love about it, as opposed to 3-D, is it creates a much larger-than-life image, suitable for these characters.'”
The director features the IMAX captures in Rises twice as much as he did on The Dark Knight, which marked the first time a major film was even partially shot with ultra-scope IMAX cameras.
Christopher Nolan’s public statement on The Dark Knight Rises official website reads, “‘[This picture] will be presented on 70-millimeter film in 102 IMAX 15/70mm locations worldwide . . . Having shot almost half the picture with large-format IMAX film cameras, it is very important to me that we show The Dark Knight Rises in the IMAX film format wherever possible. Audiences everywhere should be assured that every presentation of the film will be of the highest standard—having benefited from the clarity and depth IMAX cameras offer. However, these 102 screens will showcase the original IMAX film photography in its optimum form, and I hope anyone who has an opportunity to experience the film in these theatres will seek it out.’”
E reports Michael Caine has told the media that fan questions concerning the Batman legacy will finally be answered, saying Dark Knight Rises, “‘is so good, I don’t think we can top it.’” Christian Bale says of the picture, “‘It’s wonderful . . . It kind of brings things full circle.’”
Christopher Nolan’s Catwoman promises to be an interesting twist on the villain first introduced to the franchise by Michelle Pfeiffer in Batman Returns. According to E , Oscar nominee Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married) needed the aid of three costume department assistants just to get into her character's devilishly sexy, form-fitting Catsuit. The Love and other Drugs star also reportedly, “did all of her own stunts—in stilettos!"
Hathaway recalls the story of how she received word that Nolan had cast her in Rises. She recounts, “‘My manager called me and she meowed into the phone, so I said, ‘OK, I assume that’s a good thing?’ and she said, ‘You got it.’ And it was just a flood of joy and serotonin and endorphins, it was fantastic . . . I was so nervous for my initial meeting with Chris, that I decided I wasn’t gonna have a drink until after he made up his mind, which I assumed was going to be about a week and a half. Three and a half months later, I found out that I got the part. So, I kinda did a back flip for joy and then went out and had a Bourbon.’”
On the epic conclusion of The Dark Knight Trilogy, Hathaway, who plays the dual role of Catwoman/Selina Kyle, says, “‘[Director] Chris [Nolan] was able to amp up the stakes for this last movie and really take it to places that I don’t think anyone is expecting,”
On the danger his character, Bane, presents to Batman, Tom Hardy tells E, “‘Bane is not to be reasoned with . . . Some people want to watch the world burn. Well, Bane has come to pull the pin on the grenade.’”
Nolan says of Hardy, a lauded British actor he first worked with on the director's epic, 2010 thriller Inception, “‘What Tom is able to do just with his expression and his eyes, it’s terrifying.’” “ ‘Through the course of The Dark Knight Rises, we learn more about what drives Bane, where he comes from, what he wants . . . and none of it is good news.’”
The critically praised writer-director, universally coveted by Hollywood studios, says of Rises, “‘Every great story deserves a great ending, and we really try to be true to that . . . [The film] is our attempt to give that great story its great ending.'"
For a taste of the action you can expect from The Dark Knight Rises, see the new, 13-minute featurette loaded with behind-the-scenes sequences,E recently acquired from Warner Bros.
In addition, fans who'd like to experience the atmosphere and tone of The Dark Knight Rises before it hits theaters on July 20, 2012, should visit Empire Magazine to enjoy the film's complete score, composed by Oscar winner Hans Zimmer (The Lion King).
Like the heightened reality he and Hans Zimmer captured in Rises' original score, Nolan recently told The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "‘You want those characters to be real people, you want them to be people you’re going to care about, people you’re going to believe in,’" Later in his interview, the man behind the Dark Knight saga said, “‘Really, these films are about entertainment, they are about story and character but what we do, is we try and be very sincere in the things that frighten us or motivate us.’”
If early critical observations on the film are any indication, The Dark Knight Rises will not simply be the finest picture in Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy but also the greatest of Warner Brothers' and DC Comics' entire Batman franchise.
The movie's official website confirms The Dark Knight Rises carries the following parental advisory:
"Rated PG-13—Parents Strongly Cautioned: Some Material May Be Inappropriate for Children Under 13. Intense Sequences of Violence and Action, Some Sensuality and Language."