With his acclaimed take on Batman in The Dark Knight Trilogy, Christopher Nolan helped take superhero films to new heights both critically and commercially, paving the way for the likes of the DC Extended Universe and the pop culture juggernaut that is the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
During the promotional tour for the new book The Nolan Variations by Tom Shore, Nolan has reflected on his trilogy and expressed his relief that he got to tell his story before comic book movies became “an engine of commerce” for Hollywood studios.
“It was the right moment in time for the telling of the story I wanted to do,” said Nolan (via io9). “The origin story for Batman had never been addressed in film or fully in the comics. There wasn’t a particular or exact thing we had to follow. There was a gap in movie history. Superman had a very definitive telling with Christopher Reeve and Richard Donner. The version of that with Batman had never been told. We were looking at this telling of an extraordinary figure in an ordinary world.”
“The other advantage we had was back then you could take more time between sequels,” he continued. “When we did Batman Begins, we didn’t know we’d do one and it took three years to do it and then four years before the next one. We had the luxury of time. It didn’t feel like a machine, an engine of commerce for the studio. As the genre becomes so successful, those pressures become greater and greater. It was the right time.”
What do you make of Nolan’s comments on superhero movies? Have they become little more than an ‘engine of commerce’ for their respective studios? Let us know your thoughts on our social channels @FlickeringMyth…