Christian Bale Excited To Star With Tom Hardy In 'Dark Knight Rises'

'He seems like he's a balls-out actor,' Bale says of the 'Inception' star.

Who will Tom Hardy play in "The Dark Knight Rises"? Rumor has it the "Inception" actor is set to become a villain, though director Christopher Nolan has gone on record as saying the Riddler won't factor into his upcoming third installment of the "Batman" reboot. There's talk that Hardy would do well in the role of troubled psychologist Hugo Strange, crime lord Black Mask or gun-toting hit man Deadshot.

Whoever Hardy ends up portraying, the man he'll likely do battle against is excited for the opportunity to act with him. "I liked him in 'Inception' and I did see 'Bronson' as well," said Christian Bale — Bruce Wayne/Batman himself — in a recent interview with MTV News. "He seems like he's a balls-out actor."

When we asked Bale if he was looking forward to Hardy as an opponent, he answered, "Yeah, sounds good."

Did Bale confirm that Hardy will in fact be a villain in "The Dark Knight Rises"? Did the "opponent" part of our question breeze right by Bale? Watch the video interview and judge for yourself.

While Bale left the door slightly open to returning for a fourth "Batman" flick, he seemed fairly convinced that "The Dark Knight Rises" will be his and Nolan's final installment in the DC Comics franchise. "I think so. That's up to Chris," he said. "That was always what the discussion was. But you know, if Chris says, 'I see another story here,' then we'll be up for it. But in my mind, I'm expecting this will be it."

Of course, there's always the fanciful hope that Bale and Nolan will reunite a few decades from now for an adaptation of Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns," which tells the story of a 55-year-old Bruce Wayne who comes out of retirement to become the Caped Crusader once again.

"That maybe would not be bad," Bale laughed of the idea. "Maybe in 20 years time, but you need that break."

Check out everything we've got on "The Dark Knight Rises."

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