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Author Topic: Article on unproduced movie based on Englehart's Batman  (Read 4830 times)
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JulianPerez
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« on: August 21, 2006, 04:28:05 PM »

Here:

http://filmforce.ign.com/articles/036/036038p1.html

The 1983 movie, according to the Mankiewicz script, was to have all the major players from Englehart's stories: Silver St. Cloud, Boss Thorne, the Joker, the Penguin (the only villains omitted are Dr. Phosphorus and Hugo Strange), and features the same basic story: the Joker goes on an unpredictable rampage, all the while Batman is made to be an outlaw by Rupert Thorne.

The one thing that disturbs me is the idea that someone as formidable as Silver St. Cloud would become a "damsel in distress" captured by a villain. I mean, here we've got a girlfriend that you can see playing Chess with Batman (and winning), a girl that deduced Batman's identity...having her be another "superhero girlfriend" is deeply unfair.
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nightwing
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« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2006, 05:13:21 PM »

Sounds great, I wish they'd made it.

Funny, I kept stumbling across interesting things throughout the article; the insistence that we don't want to see a portracted "origin" story wherein Bruce trains to be Batman, the assertion that a "40-minute origin scene" for James Bond would've been ridiculous in Dr No...

I kept thinking, "But what about Batman Begins?  What about Casino Royale?"  Then I noticed...this article is from 2000!   :lol:

Still fun, though.  O'Toole would've made a great Joker, but the Penguin?
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Permanus
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« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2006, 09:40:44 PM »

Great article! And a real shame it never got made. I agree with Nightwing that O'Toole as the Penguin is a rather bizarre choice, even if they were planning on making him an "urbane scoundrel". Not sure about him being the Joker, though: Two-Face. That's who O'Toole would do well. Two-Face. (One has to say it twice.)
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Uncle Mxy
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« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2006, 03:30:14 AM »

Manciewicz should do comics.
It's just that simple.
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JulianPerez
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« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2006, 05:00:37 AM »

Quote from: "nightwing"
Funny, I kept stumbling across interesting things throughout the article; the insistence that we don't want to see a portracted "origin" story wherein Bruce trains to be Batman, the assertion that a "40-minute origin scene" for James Bond would've been ridiculous in Dr No...


I did like how THE INCREDIBLES didn't bother with origins, nor did the equally charming SKY HIGH. I would argue that origins are not effective on screen, because you have a limited amount of time to tell your story, and origins are something that generally has nothing to do with the main conflict or mystery of the story.

The origin tends to break superhero movies into two parts: a slower moving first half, and a totally unrelated second act where the villain and central conflict is introduced. The origin is treated like vegetables that have to be eaten before dessert. Eating your greens before we get to the Green Goblin.

I would argue that BATMAN BEGINS is the one origin movie that has actually worked not only because it didn't take anything about the character for granted (it even explains why he has those spikes on his gloves and the Bat-ears: to hold listening devices) but also because Batman is the one superhero that is entirely plausible. It's possible to believe Batman can exist without a really, really big "magic wand."

Because of how he was built up element by element, when Batman finally shows up in BEGINS, we can believe in him. This is why I am leery about Joss Whedon's proposed plan to do his Wonder Woman movie in the BEGINS style: the thing is, even if he explains where the bracelets and jet comes from, ultimately you either believe a woman can fly, or you don't.
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« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2006, 12:02:52 PM »

At that time, they were still developing a sense of what was needed in order to take comic book characters seriously, and weren't aware of how large the iconography would take them.  To believe that a man could fly, they felt that  the audience really needed to believe in the man.  Batman's origin story is cinematic, too, so it's really tempting to wedge that in somehow.  I don't think we get to Bruce Timm's masterful opening to B:TAS (with not so much as a mention of the -name- Batman, let alone any origin or purpose statement) or Morrison's one-page All-Star Superman "origin" until we've gone through a few origin stories and have the "suspension of disbelief" dance down.  I'm sure that today's special effects and computing technologies help.
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« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2006, 12:16:58 PM »

Would it really be unthinkable to have the origin story itself as the central plot of the film? The part I tend to like in superhero films is the "coming-to-grips-with-their-powers-and-abilities" bit, where they start to find out what they can do. (This was very well handled in Spider-Man, although I wish they would have let him design his own web-shooters.)

On the other hand, why bother with an origin? James Bond doesn't have one, but on the other hand he doesn't need one: his origin is that he is a civil servant who gets paid with my taxes. When they make a Robin Hood film, they don't feel the need to explain how he got so good with a bow and arrow - he's just really good at it, okay? I'm a deadshot with a rubber band, but nobody ever asked me how I acquired this power (practice). Everybody knows who these people are, why waste your time with origin stories? I actually loved Morrison's one-page, monosyllabic Superman origin. It's all you need to know.
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Superman of America
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« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2006, 08:50:11 PM »

Would've been real cool to have a Bronze Age era Bat-Film based on the concepts of Engleheart, Rogers, and Adams. Cheesy
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