Here we go, let’s cause a little controversy! For Nerd Water Cooler #2 we are casting a Batman film. Now this will be a complete reboot of the franchise. This movie will have nothing to do with the Nolan trilogy and will directly follow The Flash movie cast in the previous Water Cooler. This will be film number two in a lead up to a future Justice League film.
Keep in mind we have thrown EVERYTHING that Warner and DC have currently done on both TV and in the movies. Also, we are canceling everything that they have on the docket in regards to TV and film. So we are going into this with only our previous Flash film to build on. Ok so with that out of the way we get into the second film in the series which should be released on of close to July 4th weekend. Typically this is a HUGE weekend for movies. That is a big reason why I think WB/DC should release one of its aces this weekend. I would propose that film would be what is widely called the Batman Reboot. So without further delay here is Nerd Water Cooler #2 Batman.
Batman/Bruce Wayne: Armie Hammer
Hammer has struggled since his breakout performance in the Social Network. Mirror, Mirror and The Lone Ranger were not the hits that many had hoped and some wonder if Hammer could carry a film of this magnitude. He has also said that he wouldn’t do a super hero film, but with the cast that follows it would be hard to turn down. A couple more reasons to go with Hammer here is listen to his voice. He could lower his voice for Batman scenes and it would not sound as comical as Bale’s voice. Also, Hammer is 6’5” tall. A little taller than what DC lists Batman, but intimidation is a big tool in Batman’s utility belt. Hammer allows for a younger Batman and a different direction with cast and the future of the franchise. I hesitated here considering everyone from John Hamm, Benjamin Walker, Jake Gyllenhaal, Eddie Cahill, just to name a few. This is probably one of the hardest roles in comics to cast. Too many people are stuck on Bale and you can’t please anyone with this casting choice so here is mine. Let this debate commence.
Commissioner Gordon: Edward Norton
Younger Batman means we get a younger Gordon. Not quite as young as Gotham (good luck Ben Mackenzie), but younger. Norton is actually the second choice for this role. The initial choice would be Dennis Quaid, but going with a younger Batman it makes more sense to go younger with Gordon. Norton is a versatile actor who has multiple Oscar nominations. Norton also played Bruce Banner in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk and was not asked to return to the role in 2012’s The Avengers. So here we go setting a precedent let go by Marvel, come work on a DC Movie.
Barbara Gordon: Shailene Woodley
Barbara Gordon is Jim Gordon’s daughter and future Batgirl. She is a grounding force for Gordon. It is entirely likely the person that is cast in this role will possibly be a complete unknown. I’m not going with an unknown here. Woodley is currently starring in the Divergent film series. She was also in the Descendants with former Batman George Clooney (yes that was a Batman & Robin reference). Woodley can act she is a rising star in the same vein as Jennifer Lawrence. If Divergent doesn’t make her a star then Batgirl surely would.
Alfred Pennyworth: Sean Bean
The typical portrayal of Alfred is an old British butler almost old enough to be Bruce’s grandfather. Recently, Geoff Johns wrote a graphic novel called Batman: Earth One. In this storyline Alfred is around the same age as Thomas Wayne and is former British Special Forces. This is the direction we think this film should go that is why we selected Bean. Alfred could be head of Wayne security and through his guilt over the Wayne’s murder he raises Bruce and helps train him. Bean would fit this type of Alfred to a T. Bean can handle the action and he would make a great father figure/ mentor. Plus Bean won’t die in this film.
Selina Kyle/Catwoman: Gemma Arterton
Selina toes the gray line between right and wrong. While Batman does not approve of Selina’s life of crime he knows she is a valuable asset and many believe that she is his one romantic love. Selina would function more as a sidekick in this film. Arterton’s resume ranges from small arthouse films to mega budget blockbusters and flops. Arteton has also participated in action flicks like Prince of Persia and Hansel & Gretel so the physicality needed for Catwoman shouldn’t be a problem for her.
The Penguin: Andy Serkis
The one villain Christopher Nolan refused to put in a movie because he was unrealistic. Well we want him in this film. All we ask is that we avoid the way Burton portrayed him. I would suggest looking towards the Animated Series for inspiration. We all know Serkis’ work; Gollum, King Kong, and Ceasar from Planet of the Apes, but we’ve never really seen Serkis. Serkis could balance Burton’s version of The Penguin and The Animated Series version. Plus we all know Serkis would put his own twist on Mr. Cobblepot. Who knows he could be to the Penguin what Heath Ledger was to the Joker. I really would save the Penguin for a big story in a later movie. In this one he would be a villain that could introduce an established Batman and villains in Gotham.
Black Mask: Richard Armitage
Black Mask is a fan favorite and perhaps one of Batman’s deadliest foes. Black Mask is Roman Sionis a rival of Bruce Wayne’s, so that will make an interesting dynamic. Sionis could be trying to dominate Gotham’s underworld as Black Mask and take down Wayne in the process. Armitage is best known in America for his role as Thorin Oakensheild in the Hobbit films. He also starred opposite Andrew Lincoln in the British version of Strike Back. Armitage has the voice that I can hear coming from Black Mask. Plus he is a British actor so he would probably be willing to shave his head and go through the necessary make up for the role. Plus he’s a pretty accomplished actor in his native England.
Harvey Dent: James Marsden
Gotham’s young up and coming DA has been played by the likes of Billy Dee Williams, Tommy Lee Jones, and Aaron Eckhart. Let’s add another Marvel castoff for this role. Marsden played Cyclops in the X-Men films and he’s not in X-Men Days of Future Past so let’s put him in a Batman film. Dent is eventually disfigured and becomes Two-Face which again sets up a potential sequel, not necessarily the next one. Plus why not have Harvey scarred by Black Mask in this film. Now there’s an idea.
Rachel Dawes: Jessica Beil
Christopher Nolan added this character to the Batman mythos. While she won’t necessarily be Batman’s love interest she would add an interesting factor to the dynamic between Bruce and Selina and Bruce and Harvey. Beil adds a little star power to the cast with Norton. We all know Beil’s resume. While I did consider her for Catwoman I felt she would be better in this role. This would be similar to her role in the A-Team movie, and this film could all wash the taste of Beil in Total Recall out of our mouths.
Deathstroke: Joe Manganiello
Deathstroke comes into the story as one of Black Mask’s hired guns. Mask is trying to be the one who takes out the Bat and brings in Slade and another gun to take out Batman. In a story similar to Arkham Origins. Stephen Lang is a popular choice to play Wilson. Manu Bennett currently plays the character on Arrow and he does a superb job working with what he is given on that show, but Slade’s backstory on Arrow reveals him to be former Australian Special Forces. This is probably to hide the fact that Bennett probably has a hard time with an American accent. For this iteration of Slade Wilson I am going with Joe Manganiello. He currently stars on HBO’s True Blood. He is also 6’5” tall and would have no trouble looking eye to eye with Armie Hammer.
Deadshot: Max Martini
Deadshot is the second hired gun of Black Mask. Deadshot doesn’t miss except when Batman is involved. He has appeared on Arrow, but there are many better actors to cast than the one on Arrow. Martini has guest starred on a lot of TV shows. On Castle he played a hitman and was pretty scary. Martini recently was seen in Pacific Rim as the one American actor not playing an American. Plus Martini could probably pull off Lawton’s mustache.
Harvey Bullock: Common
He is Gordon’s right hand man. Bullock is more popular from the Animated Series. In the Animated Series he was portrayed as an overweight out of shape detective. Also, in Batman: Earth One he is portrayed as a Hollywood TV cop. In this film let’s make him a street success story. We want a street smart cop who knows his way around. Common is the choice for this role. He is seen on AMC’s Hell on Wheels. Common has some chops and deserves to be in a big budget film.
Rene Montoya: Monica Raymund
Montoya is another fan favorite character from the comics. Montoya also opens up more of the DC Universe, look it up. Partner her up with Bullock and Gordon we have the GCPD dream team. Raymund is currently on Chicago Fire, but she shows off her real acting talent on Lie to Me opposite Tim Roth. She could play a cop no problem.
Ramin Djawadi: Music
Batman deserves a theme Djawadi can do this. He’s done the music for Iron Man, Pacific Rim, and Game of Thrones, all have memorable themes. That’s all I have to say.
Scott Snyder: Writer
Snyder is the current scribe on Batman and Superman Unchained. Many will say he is just a comic book writer, but Snyder has done what few writers have done he has added to the Batman Mythos. Snyder’s is one of the best writers in comics today. His story would make Gotham a living breathing entity within the story. Plus who wouldn’t want to see some Court of Owls Easter eggs. He is the perfect writer to give life to a new Batman franchise.
Gore Verbinski: Director
Pirates of the Caribbean, Lone Ranger, Rango, and The Ring. Many of Verbinski’s films combine gritty and dark worlds with humor and fun (except The Ring), and after the weight of the Dark Knight trilogy Batman needs a little humor and fun. Verbinski also puts Johnny Depp in a lot of his movies and who wouldn’t love the internet a buzz with Depp as the Joker rumors?
Now that your head has exploded because you hate everything about this cast and director express your thoughts in the comments section below. Remember one thing though my opinion is just as valid as yours and this is just a fun what if scenario so let’s have fun. By the way I almost recast the Joker but I didn’t want people breaking the site because they were upset that Heath had been replaced. So carry on. Next up in Water Cooler #3; Green Lantern: Reboot.