Michael Keaton is donning the Dark Knight’s cowl once more.
While fans will be excited to see Keaton as Batman once more, it may not be the same Caped Crusader from 1989.
Keaton as Batman
As hard as it may be to believe today, the idea of Michael Keaton as Batman seemed terrible once.
In 1988, the actor was best known for comedic roles such as Mr. Mom and Beetlejuice. Casting him as Batman was a stunning decision, and magazines, newspapers, and especially comic book newsletters were filled with complaints on Keaton being a bad choice.
Keaton silenced all those doubters with 1989’s Batman film as he and Tim Burton restored Batman to his edgy roots, finally putting aside the memories of the campy 1960s TV series.
The film was a smash hit, and Keaton reprised it for the equally successful Batman Returns in 1992. However, Keaton decided not to return to the role. Val Kilmer took over for 1995’s Batman Forever.
While rumors of Keaton appearing as Batman had been around for some time, the actor had expressed concerns earlier this year about filming in the United Kingdom during the coronavirus pandemic.
It appears those concerns have been satisfied as Flash director Andy Muschietti shared a post on the start of production.
Is Keaton Bruce Wayne?
While the excitement of the original big-screen Batman returning to the role is notable, it may be that he’s playing Batman…but not Bruce Wayne.
Reports are that the Flash movie will adapt the 2011 Flashpoint storyline. In that tale, Barry Allen (Ezra Miller) goes back in time to prevent his mother from being murdered when he was a child.
This leads Barry to return to a brand new timeline where scores of heroes have been changed. Among them is that young Bruce Wayne was shot by robber Joe Chill which drove mother Martha insane.
After killing Chill, Thomas Wayne became a far more brutal Batman, not above eliminating criminals, while Martha became this world’s version of the Joker.
A recent storyline had Thomas managing to escape the Flashpoint world for the main DC Universe. He joined forces with Bane in a warped plan to “save” Bruce from Batman by tearing his life apart.
Keaton would be the perfect age for the elder Thomas, and it would be intriguing to see him putting a spin on his original role.
At the same time, some reports hint the movie may take place in a reality that ignores all the Batman movies after Batman Returns.
The movie would have Barry exploring more of the DC Multiverse, including Sasha Calle debuting as the DCEU Supergirl, and might touch on other realities.
Whichever Wayne he is, it will be thrilling seeing Keaton taking up the cape and cowl once more.
The Flash is scheduled to debut November 4, 2022.