When people talk about Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, it is usually not in the context of a superhero movie. In the seven years since “Batman Begins” redefined the character’s cinematic persona, the series has entered into a realm of its own, one based on gritty realism and weightier consequences.
MTV News spoke with two of the series’ writers, Jonathan Nolan and David S. Goyer, at the red-carpet premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises” to find out what made these movies stand out in the genre of costumed heroes.
Nolan said that much of the difference came down to the nature of the man behind the mask, Bruce Wayne. “The thing about Bruce Wayne is that his superpower is money and rage,” he said. “And there’s something transformative about a normal person, not a guy who was born with some magical gift that he just discovers, but a person who decides to become something extraordinary.”
It was that choice that had an effect on Nolan at a young age. “I think I always related to that. It’s always been the key difference between a character like Batman and all the other characters in the DC pantheon,” he said. “There are some great characters there, but this is the one I always kind of connected to the most. … You had all kinds of science fiction and some fantasy throughout the Batman books through 70 years, but for the most part, we took the idea that this was a real guy in the real world and ran in that direction.”
David S. Goyer, who co-wrote the screenplay for “Batman Begins” and the stories for “The Dark Knight” and “The Dark Knight Rises,” brought up some similar reasoning, but it was also important to make the hero relevant to today.
“Batman has always been the most grounded of the major superheroes,” Goyer said. “He doesn’t have any superpower, doesn’t come from an alien planet, things like that, but our approach from the very beginning was that we were going to treat this as real-world as possible within the superhero confines.”
Many have pointed out an apparent parallel between the story of “The Dark Knight Rises” and the Occupy Wall Street Movement, but Goyer dismissed any similarities as coincidence. “It was just kind of luck that the themes we were dealing with in this film happened to coincide with the Occupy Wall Street, 99 percent thing,” he said. “We couldn’t have planned that. It just sort of happened. We try to make them as meaningful. Hopefully, they’re sort of like a Greek myth that reflects back on what’s happening in today’s politics.”
Check out everything we’ve got on “The Dark Knight Rises.”