Since his days in two of the biggest franchises ever, Robert Pattinson seems to have shied away from the blockbuster life, choosing roles in less mainstream, more altenrative films.
And while his latest outing as an outcast astronaut in Claire Denis’ High Life is garnering plenty of praise from critics, it seems Pattinson has an eye on a return to the franchise life.
Fortunately, this isn’t a return to good old days of Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter, or Edward Cullen in Twilight. Instead, the 33-year-old actor has his sights set on playing Gotham’s most notorious citizen – Batman.
Pattinson is reportedly in talks with Warner Bros. to play the titular character in director Matt Reeves’ upcoming film, simply titled The Batman.
It’s expected to hit cinemas in June 2021 and, according to Variety, Pattinson is first choice for the role.
Reeves, who previously directed the two Planet of the Apes sequels, took over directing duties on the project from Ben Affleck in January 2017, and has quietly been developing the dark project ever since. Affleck had reportedly been working on a script with DC Comics writer Geoff Johns, though this was set aside when Reeves took over as director.
Warner Bros. and Affleck had discussed stepping down from the role after his appearance in Justice League, clearing the way for Reeves to pick his own Bruce Wayne/Batman.
Pattinson would become the second-youngest actor ever to play Batman, after Christian Bale, who was just 31 when he took the role in Batman Begins in 2005. Bale has said in the past he would consider returning to the role, but only if Christopher Nolan was directing again. While Reeves has said he wanted an actor between 25 and 33 years old.
The studio is taking its time developing the next instalment of the caped crusader’s saga. After the disappointment of Batman v Superman and Justice League, it seems they are happy to wait until the script is right. Perhaps the upcoming Joker film, starring Joaquin Phoenix, will inject new life into tired superhero films, standalone or not.
The choice of Pattinson has been received well by fans on social media, saying he would ‘make a great Batman’, is a ‘really good pick’ and, though it may be met with skepticism, he’ll ‘knock it out the park’.
Write it down, this will end up much like Ledger’s casting. It’ll be met with a lot of skepticism and then he’ll knock it out of the park. He’ll be the perfect young Bruce/Batman. Let’s hope Reeves’ script does Pattinson’s acting skills justice. https://t.co/NZ7Efs9B9l
— ♿️King Bran the Broken (@FSUEsquire) May 17, 2019
— ~Oracle (@4eyedRaven) May 17, 2019
Twilight was a long time ago. They cast Beetlejuice and Daredevil as Batman too & both ended up working out. I love this choice and I’m excited to see what he does with the role. Robert Pattinson is one of the most interesting actors working today. https://t.co/a8Ag6cUr7x
— Dan Murrell (@MurrellDan) May 17, 2019
Robert Pattinson as Batman? Really? That's … like… a really good pick come to think of it.
— Scott Weinberg (@scottEweinberg) May 17, 2019
Me after finding out that Robert Pattinson may be the new Batman… 😅 pic.twitter.com/C5iXbZHItA
— Chris Wong-Swenson #ReleaseTheSnyderCut (@nexuspong) May 17, 2019
Since he rocketed to fame in the Twilight series, Pattinson has favoured more indie films, and some have questioned whether he would want to take on such an iconic role as Batman.
This year alone, R-Patz has four films coming out – Claire Denis’ High Life, Robert Eggers’ The Lighthouse, Netflix’s The King, and Waiting for the Barbarians, based on the novel by J.M. Coetzee.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.