Schumacher Reflects On “Batman Forever”

Schumacher Reflects On Batman Forever

Filmmaker Joel Schumacher has rather interesting stories to share.

In a wide-ranging interview for Vulture, the now 79-year-old “Batman and Robin” and “Falling Down” director reflected on the films he made across a range of genres from 1974 to 2011 with films ranging from “Phone Booth” to “The Lost Boys” to “Flatliners” to “A Time to Kill” and more.

Schumacher has a talent for finding talent, his films helping launch the careers of Julia Roberts, Colin Farrell, Matthew McConaughey, Kiefer Sutherland, Demi Moore and many more. One talent he discovered but whose career didn’t quite take off was “The Lost Boys” and “Speed 2” star Jason Patric and Schumacher speaks about why:

“Jason and I have talked about this many times. Jason Patric had it all. He ran away from fame. He absolutely turned his back on it when it happened on The Lost Boys. And there’s a lot of reasons for that, but it’s not necessary to go into, it’s private… I have a feeling he grew up maybe not sensing that fame was a great thing. But why is it important for people to be movie stars? Jason Patric, at 18, with those looks and deep acting talent, could’ve had it all. He didn’t want it and purposefully ran the other way, and I respect him for that.”

Another question deals with his work on “Batman Forever” and how Tommy Lee Jones and Val Kilmer are two people he has spoken ill of, something he rarely does:

“I said Tommy Lee Jones was an a–hole in People magazine. He was fabulous on ‘The Client’. But he was not kind to Jim Carrey when we were making ‘Batman Forever’. And I didn’t say Val [Kilmer] was difficult to work with on ‘Batman Forever’. I said he was psychotic.

Tommy is, and I say this with great respect, a scene-stealer. Well, you can’t steal the scene from Jim Carrey. It’s impossible. And, I think it irked Tommy. No, he wasn’t kind to Jim. He did not act towards Jim the way an Oscar winner with a star on Hollywood Boulevard, being the oldest member of the cast, and having such a distinguished career and the accolades to go with it, should have acted towards Jim. But what happens on the set stays on the set.

…The difference between Val Kilmer and Tommy Lee Jones. I don’t care what state Tommy is in emotionally, when that camera rolls, there is no bad take. Val is a different story. But he was a fabulous Batman.”

For the full and fascinating interview, including the frank admission that he believes he’s had up to 20,000 sexual partners to discussion of how gay “Batman” is as a property before he ever got around to it, check out Vulture.