A while ago, Michael Caine told MTV News that Johnny Depp and Philip Seymour Hoffman would play The Riddler and The Penguin in a sequel to "The Dark Knight." While Hoffman has since denied the rumor, as has "The Dark Knight" screenwriter David Goyer, Caine continues to insist that at least one of those characters will be haunting Gotham City.
In an interview with Collider, Caine was asked if Christopher Nolan would return for a third "Batman" film. "I would imagine so," he said, adding, "That would be probably The Riddler [as the villain]."
Whoever ends up wearing The Riddler's jumpsuit -- or even if it's another to-be-determined Batman villain -- Caine doesn't think the actor will have too tough a time living up to the high standards left by Heath Ledger's Academy Award winning performance as Joker.
"I thought it would be a tough act to follow for anybody who played against The Joker after Jack Nicholson," Caine remarked. "You know what I'm saying? Heath is The Joker. We'll see."
For now, Caine can at least confirm his own involvement in "Batman 3" -- should he survive long enough to film it.
"Yes, if they do another one, I'll probably be the butler," he said. "I hope I'm still alive. Michael Goth, who played [Alfred in] Batman before me, the last time he played in Batman he was 84."
At 76 years old, Caine has had quite the illustrious career, and he's wondering when that road will end. "You don't know when your time [as an actor] is up so to speak," he said. "There just goes a period of time when the right scripts don't arrive. And it hasn't happened to me yet. It might have happened now. I finished this last picture ["Is Anybody There"], as I said. I don't have another picture to do. If a script doesn't come, then I won't do anything and I'll be retired."
Retirement? Say it ain't so, Michael! Luckily, the actor has no official plans to retire from the business. "There won't be any announcement or anything," Caine promised. "I remember [Douglas] MacArthur saying 'Old soldiers don't die. They fade away.' Well, old actors don't die. They fade away."
Do you think Michael Caine will still be acting by the time a third "Batman" goes into production? How about for "Batman 4" or "Batman 5"? How do we get Caine cloning technology to ensure his presence for "Batman 16"? Your scientific theories in the comments field below!