Nolan Talks “Superman”, “Batman”

Empire Magazine has done a rather epic interview with “Inception” director Christopher Nolan and got him to talk a little bit more about both a third “Batman” and the “Superman” reboot he’s attached to ‘mentor’.

Nolan still hasn’t officially signed on to direct the next “Batman” and he says its due to workload – “the God’s honest truth is I work on one movie at a time. I’m only capable of doing that, so my head will continue to be firmly in [‘Inception’] for another few months.”

His brother Jonah is currently working on the script and Nolan is excited about it because he “particularly like(s) where we are taking the characters and what the ending is… There are things for me to be very excited about in addressing the characters again.”

He once again confirmed that the film will essentially be the capper of a trilogy rather than a random third entry – “the finishing of a story rather than infinitely blowing up the balloon and expanding the story.”

One thing he did shoot down are some villain possibilities. Firstly he “emphatically and unhesitatingly” said we will NOT see the return of The Joker with someone else taking on the late Heath Ledger’s role – “No, I just don’t feel comfortable about it.” It also looks like The Penguin and Mr. Freeze are definitely not out.

What about a DC style superhero teacup project? No chance. “Superman is very specifically superpowered and obviously otherworldly; Batman is very human and flawed… there’s an elemental feeling of power in the iconography of those characters. To me that’s originally because they stood alone. I need to hang on to that in my imagining of them.”

So what exactly is his involvement in the new “Superman”? Nolan says David Goyer pitched him a new approach to the Man of Steel one day, and Nolan “thought it was really tremendous. It was the first time I had been able to conceive of how you would address Superman in a modern context.”

He took that idea to Warners, they liked it and now “It’s something we were just trying to put together a vision for, and then find the right person to take it forward… it’s not something for me to direct.”

Like his take on “Batman” which went back to the character’s darker and more serious roots, Nolan says that approach is what’s needed with Superman – “what makes those the best superhero characters there are, the most beloved after all this time, is the essence of who those characters were when they were created and when they were first developed. And you can’t ever move too far from that.”

Finally he discussed “Inception” which he says is “absolutely my Bond film. I’ve been plundering ruthlessly from the Bond movies in everything I’ve done, forever. They’re a huge influence on me.” Nolan also said his favourite is “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” because “it’s by far the most emotional” and he tried to achieve a similar “balance of action, scale, and romanticism and tragedy and emotion” in “Inception”.