Batman Begins (2005) Poster



Ra's Al Ghul is Arabic for "The Demon's Head". This refers to his position at the height of the Brotherhood of the Demon, a.k.a. The League of Shadows. Al-Ghul translates to The Ghoul in Arabic, but generally is summarized as Demon.
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Christian Bale's active dislike of his uncomfortable Batman outfit helped his performance as the Dark Knight as he was perpetually in a foul mood when wearing it.
The language used by Ken Watanabe is neither Japanese, nor Tibetan, nor in fact any known language at all. It's supposedly some gibberish he says he made up himself for the role, though the subtitles list it as Urdu.
While shooting on the streets of Chicago, a person accidentally crashed into the Batmobile. The driver was apparently drunk, and said he hit the car in a state of panic, believing the Dark Knight's vehicle to be an invading alien spacecraft.
Although Christian Bale performed many of his own stunts, he wasn't allowed anywhere near the Batmobile.
Christian Bale revealed in interviews, in 2009, that in his first ever scene with Sir Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman (one involving Bale waking up in bed to find them waiting there), he fell asleep after getting ready for the scene. Bale described waking up to find Sir Michael Caine poking him in the ribs, saying "Look at that! He's bloody fallen asleep".
Director Christopher Nolan is reputed to have been so fascinated with Cillian Murphy's bright blue eyes, that he kept trying to find reasons and ways to have Crane remove his glasses.
(at around 17 mins) When Christian Bale and Liam Neeson were fighting on the frozen lake, they could hear the ice cracking beneath their feet. The next day, the lake was completely melted.
Before shooting began, Christopher Nolan invited the whole film crew to a private screening of Blade Runner (1982). After the film he said to the whole crew, "This is how we're going to make "Batman"."
In an interview with Moviefone, Christian Bale said that he became interested in playing Batman after a friend of his loaned him the graphic novel "Arkham Asylum" (by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean) in 2000. After he read it, he told his agent that if anyone was making another Batman movie, he wanted in.
The film inspired James Bond Producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli to reboot the James Bond franchise, and reinvent the character of British Secret Agent James Bond, and making him much darker, and more realistic with Casino Royale (2006).
Christian Bale lost his voice three times during filming, after altering his voice while playing Batman.
The cape was made with a technique called electrostatic flocking, taught to the crew by the British Ministry of Defense and normally used to decrease the night-vision visibility of objects. Nylon parachute fabric was brushed with glue and covered with fine hair-like material. An electrostatic current was then passed under the material, creating a dark sheen while maintaining the billowing appearance.
Christian Bale decided early on in the audition process that he didn't want to play Batman straight, but to play him as a rage-filled monster, figuring that it might polarize Christopher Nolan. To his delight, Nolan was thrilled with his off-kilter interpretation.
An unforeseen problem with the ninja training academy was that Liam Neeson towered over the rest of the men. This was swiftly solved by putting most of the ninjas on wooden blocks.
Christopher Nolan decided that there would be no second unit, and so for the whole one hundred twenty-nine shooting days, Nolan oversaw every shot of the film personally.
Only a few days before the role of Batman was cast, eight actors were asked to audition for the part. They were Christian Bale, Joshua Jackson, Eion Bailey, Hugh Dancy, Billy Crudup, Cillian Murphy, Henry Cavill, and Jake Gyllenhaal. David Duchovny was once again considered to play the part of Bruce Wayne/Batman since he was considered for the latest movie which was Batman & Robin (1997). While Bale won the part, Christopher Nolan liked Murphy's audition so much, he cast him as Dr. Jonathan Crane a.k.a. The Scarecrow. Part of the audition process involved the actors wearing a Batman suit (minus the cape which has been missing for some time) used by Val Kilmer in Batman Forever (1995), which was brought out of storage for this purpose.
Tim Burton and Michael Keaton, from Batman (1989), have said they were impressed by this film.
Since Alfred's sense of duty and loyalty towards Bruce Wayne reminded him of military comradeship, Sir Michael Caine based his character's voice on that of a Colonel he knew, when he was in the Army as an 18-year-old.
Much of Batman's gear and apparel, including his cape and suit, is based on real-life military technology.
None of the big name cast members were initially told that the movie was a Batman movie, as the script they were sent was titled "The Intimidation Game". Sir Michael Caine commented that when he first saw the title, he assumed the script was some kind of gangster movie.
During interviews with Christian Bale while promoting the movie, he continued using the American accent he'd adopted to play Bruce Wayne/Batman. He explained that he didn't want potential moviegoers to be confused about why Batman, an American institution, was being played by an Welshman. However, this may not be the whole truth, as Bale rarely gives an interview in his native Welsh accent. It is believed that this is because Bale is always using whichever accent is required for his next role, which reflects his commitment as a method actor.
According to DC Comics, Batman stands 6'2" and weighs 210 lbs. Christian Bale stands 6'0-1/2" (according to his IMDb profile) and at the time of filming weighed 210 lbs.
Christian Bale's trailer didn't have his name on the door, but said "Bruce Wayne" instead.
Due to his part in The Machinist (2004), Christian Bale was vastly underweight (about 120 pounds on his six foot frame) when he was under consideration for the part. After being cast, he was told to become as "big as you could be" by Christopher Nolan. Bale underwent a six month dietary and exercise regimen, and ending up weighing about 220 pounds (about forty pounds above his normal weight). It was decided that Bale had become too large (friends of his on the film's crew dubbed him "Fatman") and he quickly shed about twenty pounds to have leaner, more muscular frame. Bale described the experience as an unbearable physical ordeal.
Contrary to the previous Batman films, in which the Batcave was realized as a combination of a live set and matte paintings (done either by hand or computer), no visual effects were used in this film to show the Batcave. The entire Batcave is instead a massive full-scale set.
Heath Ledger was considered for the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman during the film's early development before being cast as The Joker in the sequel The Dark Knight (2008), a role that won him an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.
Hans Zimmer named the tracks in the soundtrack after types of Bats. The first letters of tracks 4-9 in the soundtrack, spell "BATMAN". ("Barbastella", "Artibeus", "Tadarida", "Macrotus", "Antrozous" and "Nycteris")
The 2006 "Forbes Fictional 15" ranks Bruce Wayne as the seventh richest fictional character, with a net worth of approximately 6.8 billion dollars.
David S. Goyer mentioned in an interview that his favorite pre-audition choice for Batman was Jake Gyllenhaal, but that he was won over by Christian Bale after seeing his test.
First live-action appearance by Scarecrow, a villain dating back to Batman's earliest comic stories. While considered for the 1960s television series, he was never used, and was to be the main villain in the fifth Tim Burton/Joel Schumacher film that was shelved.
The house which served as the setting of "Wayne Manor" in the film was Mentmore Towers, the former Rothschild estate located in Buckinghamshire, England. The mansion served as the O'Connells' home in The Mummy Returns (2001), and has also been featured in such other films as Brazil (1985), Slipstream (1989), Eyes Wide Shut (1999), Quills (2000), Ali G Indahouse (2002), and Johnny English (2003).
At the time of this film's release, Forbes Magazine did a breakdown of how much it would actually cost to become Batman. The magazine estimated that total expenses in U.S. dollars would be around 3.5 million.
Christopher Nolan originally didn't want to give Scarecrow a mask. Screenwriter David S. Goyer was able to talk him into it.
(at around 19 mins) In a 2012 interview, Christopher Nolan admitted that he invented the line "rub your chest, your arms will take care of themselves," spoken by Henri Ducard (Liam Neeson) after Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) falls into the frozen lake, and that it has no scientific basis, adding that he imagined "Boy Scouts everywhere freezing to death" because they took the advice literally, thanks to Neeson's convincing delivery.
Christopher Nolan would generally shoot the fight scenes with the actors doing as many of the stunts as physically possible (in the case of Christian Bale and Liam Neeson, that was pretty much all of them). He would then shoot the same fight sequences with the stuntmen for coverage.
The title went through many changes. First, it was known as "Batman 5". It became "Batman: The Frightening" for a while. To prevent script leaks, they were titled "Intimidation Game" to throw off the public, before settling on "Batman Begins".
This marks one of the first times the Keysi fighting style has been showcased on film.
The first day of filming that Christian Bale tried on the Batsuit, he stayed in it all day, in an effort to get used to it.
(at around 1h 8 mins) In the movie, Bruce Wayne is shown arriving at a fancy hotel in a Lamborghini Murciélago. The word "murciélago" is Spanish for bat (although the car itself was named after a prized bull owned by Don Antonio Miura, who had nothing to do with bats).
Marilyn Manson, Christopher Eccleston, Ewan McGregor, and Jeremy Davies were considered for the role of Dr. Jonathan Crane a.k.a. The Scarecrow.
The film's marketing costs - one hundred million dollars - were, at the time, the most ever spent on one movie.
A pair of Batman pajama bottoms can be seen hanging from the line in the scene where Batman talks to the little boy in the Narrows.
"Batman" is said only ten times throughout the film.
Unlike most characters in the movie, Rachel Dawes, played by Katie Holmes, doesn't exist in any DC Comics' series. She was created by Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer. The role was written expressly for Katie Holmes, with Claire Danes and Reese Witherspoon as backup considerations.
Instances with just one or two bats in the shot, (such as the single bat gone astray inside Wayne's mansion), uses real bats, but each scene with a flock of bats, had to be done using CGI bats, since it was decided to be too difficult to control that many bats at once.
The only Batman film in the Nolan trilogy to utilize "flash fighting". Christopher Nolan has said that the idea was to convey Batman's strikingly fast fighting abilities and make him seem quick and a formidable opponent. It was not however, utilized in the sequels.
Ashton Kutcher was in heavy considerations for the role of Bruce Wayne and was reportedly the studio executives' choice for the same. Nolan however, was not enthusiastic about the idea of casting Kutcher in the role, which prompted Warner Bros. studio heads to drop the idea. Kutcher's casting would have lead to a controversy similar to the one that sparked the Batman (1989) movie when Michael Keaton, a comic actor, was cast as Batman.
The Batmobile, nine feet wide, and sixteen feet long, has a top speed of 106 miles per hour, and can accelerate from zero to sixty miles per hour in six seconds. The engine is a 5.7 liter V8 Chevy. It runs on unleaded gasoline, and can do about seven miles per gallon. It has four 44-inch tires at the rear, made by Interco Tire Corp, while the front is covered in jagged plates of armor. It was designed and built by Chris Corbould and Andrew Smith at Shepperton Studios in England. This Batmobile was built from the ground up, and is estimated to be worth half a million pounds. It was designed by mashing together several different off-the-shelf model kits; its construction was so exacting to the model, that they even duplicated the blobs of excess glue.
Christian Bale had read some of the graphic novels long before he played Batman. He said that in 2000, a friend lent him a copy of the graphic novel "Arkham Asylum," which he thoroughly enjoyed, and made him wonder why that version of Batman hadn't been portrayed on screen. In preparing for the role, Bale said he made a conscious effort to avoid watching the performances of previous Batman actors, so he could approach the character from a fresh perspective.
During filming of the scene, where Batman is being towed by a train through the streets of Gotham, so much steam was used, that it would "rain" on the cast and crew for several minutes after each take.
On the set, the costumed Christian Bale constantly had two people trailing him to keep the Batsuit smudge-free.
Early work on the script and the production design was conducted in the back of Christopher Nolan's garage. During the writing process, Nolan and David S. Goyer sometimes took walks near the site of the original Batcave from Batman (1966).
Sir Michael Caine signed on to play Alfred for the chance to work with the "clever" Christopher Nolan. He has now appeared in every Nolan film since.
A quote from Christian Bale that some of the crew had on the back of their t-shirts (the wardrobe department did it as a joke) said: "It's hot, dark and sweaty and it gives me a headache."
According to an interview with Production Designer Nathan Crowley, the waterfall guarding the entrance to the Batcave was originally meant to cover a solid rock wall, which Batman's enemies would slam into when attempting the jump in. The rock wall would have been opened with a button inside the Batmobile, but the sequence was cut before filming began.
The "daylight" coming through the windows of Wayne Manor was created by a single 100,000-watt floodlight which weighed nearly 400 pounds.
Over twenty prototypes of the Scarecrow's face were crafted before settling on the final piece.
Christian Bale's older sister, Louise Bale, portrayed Bruce Wayne's mother, Mrs. Wayne, in the 2003 short The Death of Batman (2003).
Christian Bale was the first actor to meet with Christopher Nolan about playing Batman.
(at around 1h 21 mins) This is the only Batman movie (both live action and animated) to celebrate Bruce Wayne's birthday. He turns 30 - you can see a big '30' in the background when Rachel comes by to give him his present.
The license plates for the Gotham related cars were designed in the same style as the Illinois state license plates. This was done to stay consistent with other vehicle license plates while filming the car chases in Chicago.
The movie references the comic, "Batman Year One" by Frank Miller with Detective Flass, the corrupt cop, being partnered with James Gordon. It further follows the storyline by showing Gordon refusing to turn in the corrupt cops.
The first live action Batman film produced and released after the death of Batman co-creator Bob Kane in 1998. This is also the first film to not have Kane as project consultant.
The first film directed and written by Christopher Nolan to be rated PG-13 in the United States.
A significant portion of the main cast consists of European actors performing American accents for their parts. Christian Bale (Bruce Wayne/Batman) is Welsh; Gary Oldman (Jim Gordon) is English; Cillian Murphy (Dr. Jonathan Crane) is Irish; Tom Wilkinson (Carmine Falcone) is English; Rutger Hauer (Earle) is Dutch; Linus Roache (Thomas Wayne) is English; Colin McFarlane (Loeb) is English; and Sir Michael Caine (Alfred Pennyworth) is English, though he's not performing an American accent.
In the previous Batman films, the Oscar winners played the villains. In this one, the Oscar winners are on the heroes' side: Sir Michael Caine as Alfred, Gary Oldman as Jim Gordon, Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox and Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman.
There were five Batmobiles made for the film in total.
Filming was temporarily delayed on the London soundstage due to the sound of amorous pigeons in the rafters above.
The wide-shot of the house of the League of Shadows was entirely computer-generated.
Bruce Wayne does not appear in full Batman costume until just over an hour into the movie.
The writers considered having Harvey Dent in the film but inserting him would have been too unwieldy.
With the exception of the pier scene in Batman: The Movie (1966), this is the first Batman movie in which Gotham City scenes were filmed on-location in an actual city, as opposed to on a set, or images via stock footage. While the on-location scenes were filmed in Chicago, Gotham City of the comics is based on New York City, and in fact the name Gotham is a colloquial for New York City.
(at around 1h 30 mins) The only film in Christopher Nolan's trilogy where Batman utilizes bats. Specifically, to overwhelm the SWAT Team to hinder their efforts in pursuing him.
Initially Christopher Nolan wanted to cast Gary Oldman as a villain, and Chris Cooper as Gordon. Cooper, however, wanted to spend more time with his family, so Nolan hit on the unusual idea of casting Oldman as a character who was not a baddie.
The Gotham Police cruisers' color scheme is based on that of the New York Police Department. Gotham was meant by Bob Kane to be a caricature of New York City.
Sir Anthony Hopkins was offered the role of Alfred, but declined.
Laurence Fishburne was considered for the role of Lucius Fox.
(at around 3 mins) In the opening fight sequence, where Wayne and Ducard are debating the number of criminals Wayne was fighting, there are actually seven, meaning Wayne was right.
For the IMAX version, some of the theatres running older IMAX equipment, the credits for the movie wouldn't fit on the platters. IMAX and the theatres had to get special permission from Warner Brothers to show the movie without the credits.
While filming on Lower Wacker Drive, in Chicago, Illinois, the filmmakers were so concerned for the care of the Batmobile, that they told the stunt driver to take as much time as he needed to make any move. Therefore, when it came time to back the Batmobile up, they went so slow as to cause traffic jams that had to be reported on the news. Simply moving the Batmobile around Chicago took numerous police, as well as caused traffic jams where ever they went.
A full city block of Gotham - much of it based on the slums of Kowloon in Hong Kong which were torn down in 1994 - was built in a converted aircraft hangar.
Although Henry Cavill auditioned for the role of Batman, he would later go on to play Clark Kent a.k.a. Superman in Man of Steel (2013) and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) and Justice league
Liam Neeson hesitated to do this movie. A Superman fan, he says he found Batman "scary."
Christian Bale had to perform sixteen separate fights in the course of the film.
Viggo Mortensen turned down the role of Henri Ducard. Daniel Day-Lewis was also approached.
This is the first Batman movie in which the name of Bruce Wayne (Batman) is not changed for the Spanish version to Bruno Díaz. The name Bruno Díaz has been used for the Latin American audience since the early Batman Comics that come to South America back in the 50s.
When Christopher Nolan asked Hans Zimmer to provide the score, Zimmer asked him if he could also bring James Newton Howard on board. The two composers had been meaning to work together for some time and this felt like the perfect project for two composers with its bi-polar lead character.
This is the only film in the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy to not feature super-villains that previously appeared in the Tim Burton/Joel Schumacher series.
First live action appearance by Lucius Fox, who was created in the comics in 1979. Fox was previously depicted in the various Batman animated series during the 1990s and early 2000s.
The name of Arkham Asylum is inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft. It was first incorporated into Batman's comic books in the mid-1970s.
Batman's journey to Tibet, and his ninja training, were both elements introduced into the comic book by writer James Owsley in Batman #431 (March, 1989). The series editor, Denny O'Neil, made the issue part of the Batman Writers Bible that he would hand out to each new writer on the series, thus confirming the story's place in canon.
During production, DC Comics commissioned well known Batman artists to give their interpretation of the Dark Knight. The results were shown to Christopher Nolan and the cast to help give them a better idea of where the comic artists were coming from. Among the artists were James Jean, Jock, Tommy Lee Edwards, and John Paul Leon.
Despite the film's darkness, Christopher Nolan wanted to make the film appeal to a wide age range. "Not the youngest kids obviously, I think what we've done is probably a bit intense for them, but I certainly didn't want to exclude the sort of ten to twelve year olds, because as a kid I would have loved to have seen a movie like this." Because of this, nothing gory or bloody was filmed.
A second stage Scarecrow look was created for the hallucination scenes but was never shown on film. The mask was more organic and tighter around the actor's face.
Lana Wachowski (formerly Larry) and Lilly Wachowski were approached to direct, and even wrote their own treatment based on Frank Miller's graphic novel "Batman: Year One", but turned down the offer and made The Matrix Reloaded (2003) and The Matrix Revolutions (2003) instead.
The eighth biggest grossing film of 2005 in the U.S.
Keanu Reeves was considered for the role of Batman, and even expressed interest in the press when the project was in development.
Morgan Freeman admitted that he's read Batman comics since he was nine, but didn't know anything about Lucius Fox.
The script was written by David S. Goyer in the seven weeks before he was due to direct Blade: Trinity (2004), which he also wrote. Christopher Nolan took over the writing chores from there.
While this is the second Batman film to get a "thumbs up" from Roger Ebert, it's the first live-action Batman movie to get a "thumbs up" from him, since the first one was the animated film Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993).
Christopher Nolan wanted to show Batman from the criminal's point of view, showing less of him. He says, "You would see him as more frightening. There would be more suspense."
Christian Bale said that his main motivation about this movie was coming from his disappointments about previous Batman movies.
Amy Adams read for Rachel Dawes during Christian Bale's screen test. She would go on to play Lois Lane in Man of Steel (2013) and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016).
Before Christopher Nolan took over, director Darren Aronofsky was attached to make a Batman movie based on the graphic novel "Batman: Year One" and have the author Frank Miller write the screenplay. By 2003 there was a first draft screenplay with story boards, which are properties of AOL Time Warner. Warner's decision for not producing the film is unknown, but based on the details that have since leaked out, it would probably have to do with the screenplay, which strayed a considerable amount from the source material, making Alfred an African-American mechanic named "Big Al," the Batmobile being a souped-up Lincoln Towncar, and Bruce Wayne being homeless, among other things. This is all detailed in David Hughes' book "Tales from Development Hell."
Gary Oldman agreed to play Jim Gordon without even reading the script. He was the last star cast, and he learned his lines on the flight to his first location.
This is the first movie to use the new DC logo.
Liam Neeson had to hunch down during the final fight with Christian Bale due to the height difference between them - Neeson being 6'4" with Bale being only a little over 6-foot even.
On a converted parking lot at Shepperton, the film crew built an entire village of trailers where chemists and costume artists made neoprene-and-foam-latex Batsuits. The place was dubbed "Cape Town."
Wayne Tower is based on the Chicago Board of Trade Building.
Stuntdriver George Cottle went through four Batmobiles during the making of the film.
Broke opening weekend box office record for IMAX theaters.
Christian Bale kept Batman graphic novels on the set for inspiration. He loved the imagery.
The only film in the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy to incorporate the word "Batman" on its title. Its sequels, The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012), however, use "The Dark Knight", one of the most known Batman nicknames instead.
David S. Goyer said that the graphic novels "The Long Halloween" and "Dark Victory" by Jeph Loeb were a huge influence on his screenplay. When he was asked the question, "What about Frank Miller's "Year One"?", he replied, "Our story is not "Year One"." An early draft of Goyer's script leaked onto the Internet in April 2004.
The National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) which is based in Mill Hill, England is used for the outside shots and images of Arkham Asylum.
Christian Bale got headaches from the cowl and would use them to get into character. He says they made him fierce and impatient.
Christian Bale watched tapes of his fights so he could get through his training quickly. Bale's eidetic memory allowed him to memorize fight sequences easily.
The film cast include four Oscar winners: Christian Bale, Sir Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman; and three Oscar nominees: Liam Neeson, Ken Watanabe, and Tom Wilkinson.
David S. Goyer said that Morgan Freeman was the only person who could play Lucius Fox.
Christopher Nolan was so impressed with Ken Watanabe here that he cast him in Inception (2010).
Christopher Nolan envisioned The Tumbler to be a combination of a Lamborghini and a Hummer.
Christopher Nolan modeled the character Thomas Wayne after Theodore Roosevelt.
(at around 46 mins) Psychologist Dr. Robin S. Rosenberg commended the film for portraying the psychological concept of "exposure" in the scene where Bruce Wayne is in a cave surrounded by bats. He first becomes scared and panicky and slowly calms down and afterwards his fear of bats is gone.
You never actually even see batman "hit" anyone.
Kurt Russell, Chris Cooper, and Dennis Quaid were considered for the role of James Gordon.
Christian Bale is the first Welsh actor to play the role Bruce Wayne/Batman.
Sarah Michelle Gellar and Rachel McAdams were considered for the part of Rachel Dawes.
Christopher Nolan cast Katie Holmes for her "girl next-door" quality.
Nathan Crowley said that the design of the Batmobile was largely influenced from the design seen in Frank Miller's graphic novel "The Dark Knight Returns". The incarnation of the Batmobile was given the nickname "The Tumbler", by both filmmakers and Miller.
The average length of a shot is 1.9 seconds.
A possible influence (apart from "The Dark Knight Returns" graphic novel) in the Tumbler's design is the F-117 Nighthawk, sharing similar features, specifically the use of odd angles around the body used for stealth (although the Tumbler might use them to disperse kinetic energy from bullets and explosives) and almost jet-black color.
Guy Pearce was considered for the role of Henri Ducard, but was deemed too young.
In Brazil, dubber Márcio Seixas is the official voice of both Rutger Hauer and Sir Michael Caine, and the regular voice of Liam Neeson and Morgan Freeman. Plus, he provides the voice of the character Bruce Wayne/Batman in many cartoons. For this movie, he voiced only Caine.
Christopher Nolan's and Sir Michael Caine's first film together.
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Crime boss Carmine "The Roman" Falcone was a prominent character in Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli's comic book Batman: Year One. His story was continued and resolved in Jeph Loeb's comic book epic The Long Halloween.
(at around 28 mins) The gun Bruce Wayne tosses in the river is a Brazilian six-shot Taurus.
The UK censors, the BBFC, viewed the film at the request of the distributors during post-production. The sound mix was incomplete. Warners were keen to get a 12A rating (to match the U.S. PG-13) and the BBFC advised them that in order to avoid a higher rating, "care should be taken with the final sound mix so as not to play up the sound of blows and to avoid more bone crunching sound effects" in a number of scenes. Because the BBFC examiners did not advise the distributors to specifically reduce any of the sound effects, as the sound mix was incomplete at the time of the viewing, this film was passed 12A with no cuts made. This same version was released worldwide, with the cuts discussed in full on the SBBFC website for students.
(at around 1h 35 mins) Batman rescues Rachel Dawes, and is evading the police with the Batmobile/Tumbler on I-17 in Gotham City. The city fictitiously exists on the eastern seaboard of the United States. The real I-17 is 146 miles long, and exists entirely in the state of Arizona, linking Phoenix to Flagstaff.
(at around 12 mins) The opera that young Bruce attends with his parents is "Mefistofele", composed in the mid-1800s by Arrigo Boito.
Sir Michael Caine took his screen name from The Caine Mutiny (1954), which featured José Ferrer, uncle of previous Batman George Clooney, and the first actor considered for the role of the Joker in the 1960s television series.
A common idea in the comics is that Bruce saw a Zorro film with his parents before they were murdered. Christopher Nolan explained that by ignoring that idea - which he stated is not found in Batman's first appearances - it emphasized the importance of bats to Bruce, and that becoming a superhero is a wholly original idea on his part. It is for this reason, Nolan believes other DC characters do not exist in the universe of his film; otherwise, Wayne's reasons for taking up costumed vigilantism would have been very different.
With this film, Christopher Nolan would begin the practice of showing all of his movie's credits at the end of the movie including the movie's title. Although Nolan's Following (1998) followed a similar practice of showing credits in the end, it did show the title of the movie at the start.
The key "combination" that Bruce plays on the piano to open the secret entrance to the Bat Cave is comprised of three pairs of notes, starting three octaves above middle-C. The keys he presses are D-E, D-E (up an octave), and G-A. However, the tones heard in the soundtrack are actually a half-step down from the correct tones for the notes he plays. This may simply be a post-production soundtrack adjustment or variance, but could also be that the piano was tuned a half-step down, which is sometimes done on older pianos to reduce the 18-20 tons of string tension stress on their framing.
M. Night Shyamalan was at one point considered to write and direct the film, but turned it down.
Christian Bale never wanted to play Batman as Bruce Wayne in a Bat suit. For him, it's a completely different character.
Christopher Nolan's and Christian Bale's first film together.
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The character Ra's al Ghul was co-created by comic-book writer/editor Denny O'Neil and artist Neal Adams. O'Neil also wrote the Batman Begins (2005) novelization.
Lieutenant James Gordon is one of the few Gotham City Police Officers not on the take from mob boss Carmine Falcone. However, in Romeo Is Bleeding (1993), Gary Oldman portrays a corrupt police officer who, not only accepts bribes from, but does bidding for, a mafia Don named Falcone.
(at around 1h 3 mins) During Batman's first appearance in the suit crime boss Carmine Falcone asks "What the hell are you?" To which Batman replies "I'm Batman!" In Tim Burton's Batman (1989) film when Batman first appears a villain asks "What are you?" To which Batman replies "I'm Batman!"
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The name of the commissioner on the film is "Loeb". However, this is NOT a reference to comic book writer Jeph Loeb, author of the graphic novels "The Long Halloween" and "Dark Victory", but rather simply the canonical name of the Gotham City police commissioner when Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham. This is shown in Frank Miller's Year One, which actually influenced both "The Long Halloween" and "Dark Victory" and was published nearly a full decade before either of these. Additionally unlike the comics, Loeb is not a corrupt officer in the film.
Henri Ducard was created by Batman (1989) screenwriter Sam Hamm. The character was in the movie's original script, however was dropped. Hamm later (during his comic book writing debut on Detective Comics series) incorporated the character into the Batman mythos.
One of two comic book movies Rutger Hauer appeared in in 2005. The other was Sin City (2005).
The only post-1989 Batman film where none of Batman's vehicles are dismantled.
Contains 400 visual effects shots.
For the look of Gotham City, Christopher Nolan aimed for "New York City on steroids."
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For a perfect fit, a plaster cast was made of Christian Bale, and the Bat suit was hand cut from foam latex.
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This film was inspired by director Ridley Scott's Blade Runner (1982). Rutger Hauer, who played one of the replicants in Blade Runner, also appears in this film as Mr. Earle.
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Christopher Nolan, David S. Goyer, and Nathan Crowley set up shop in Nolan's garage to work on the screenplay. They had to vacate the premises on the day that the cleaner came, as the garage simply became too hot with the washing machine and drier going.
The only Batman movie in the Dark Knight trilogy to be made into a video game.
The sets were built in the Admiralty Hangar No. 2 at Cardington, one of the largest hangars in the world. The floor area is the size of sixteen Olympic-size swimming pools. The No. 2 shed was assembled at the site, in 1928, to house the British airship R100.
Josh Hartnett turned down the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman.
On May 22, 2004, filming took place at Senate House (a property belonging to the University of London, just off Russell Square). The front of the building was made up as the Gotham City courts, complete with New York City-style taxis and Gotham Police Department cars.
In 1999, Warner Brothers hired Darren Aronofsky to write and direct Batman: Year One, which was to be the fifth film in the Batman franchise. Aronofsky brought Frank Miller to co-write Year One with him. Aronofsky collaborator Matthew Libatique was set as cinematographer, moreover he wanted to shoot the film in Tokyo, doubling for Gotham City. Aronofsky wanted to cast Clint Eastwood for the role of Batman. However, Warner Brothers was not happy with the script, due to the differences from the source material and did not greenlight the film.
This is the first Batman film to be shot in a 2.35:1 aspect ratio.
Joe Pantoliano revealed in an interview that he turned down the role of Detective Flass citing him as an unimportant character.
Some die hard fans of the Batman comics had speculated this film was a prequel to Batman (1989) and its 3 sequels, detailing how Bruce Wayne first became Batman and not had realized it was a reboot and the first installment of a trilogy.
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Andrew Kevin Walker was interviewed by Nolan to write the script.
Christopher Nolan planned his "Batman" reboot to be a trilogy. This is the first installment.
First credited theatrical film of Jack Gleeson. His first film appearance was in Reign of Fire (2002), with an uncredited role. Christian Bale also appears in that movie.
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With Katie Holmes playing Rachel Dawes in this film, this film marks the second time a wife of Tom Cruise has played a Batman love interest, after Nicole Kidman had played Dr. Chase Meridian in Batman Forever (1995).
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When Warner Brothers was considering "Batman: The Frightening" as the title, a script was released online that was widely believed to be official. Two writers, Terry Hayes and Rafael Yglesias, were credited on the draft, but both denied writing it. The author was later discovered to be Brandon Gaines.
This film's origin sequence in Tibet, while present in some later 1980s comic books, ultimately derives from the Shadow's (Lamont Cranston/Kent Allard) oriental scholarship.
Early in the writing process, Nathan Crowley was brought on-board to spitball ideas.
(at around 31 mins) The homeless man that gets Bruce's coat is Rade Serbedzija. He is the same actor that plays the father out for revenge in Taken 2 (2012) also starring Liam Neeson.
Rutger Hauer plays Earle, who looks after the fortunes of Wayne Enterprises following the death of Thomas Wayne. Hauer starred in two of Christopher Nolan's favourite movies Blade Runner (1982) and The Hitcher (1986).
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The three notes that Bruce Wayne plays on the piano keyboard after speaking with Rachel Dawes sound suspiciously like the "Whap", "Biff", "Oooof" sound effect from the original "Batman" theme.
Alexandra Bastedo's last role in a theatrical feature.
Sir Michael Caine believes Alfred represents the audience: "You amongst all the nutcases in the film."
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(at around 57 mins) When Bruce Wayne test drives the Tumbler in a huge white room that is the interior of the Excel Exhibition Centre in East London. The separating walls have been pulled back to all the tumbler to drive around but you can still see the hall numbers as they drive by them e.g N4, N5 etc.
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Bruce's imprisonment and Henry Ducard offering to train Bruce was heavily influenced by The Mask of Zorro (1998). In the film Diego De La Vega (Anthony Hopkins) meets thief Alejandro Murrieta (Antonio Banderas) and he offers the thief to train him as Zorro, as Alejandro seeks to avenge his brother. The Zorro stories by Johnston McCulley was one of Bob Kane's inspirations behind Batman. Anthony Hopkins turned down the role of Alfred Pennyworth which went to Michael Caine.
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Morgan Freeman (Lucius Fox) and Mark Boone Junior (Flass) have previously appeared in Se7en (1995).
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Michael Caine starred in Alfie (1966), in which his character Alfie has the surname Pennyworth which is the same name as his character from The Dark Knight trilogy.
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(at around 46 mins) Psychoanalysts praised the film for its portrayal of Exposure therapy to cure Bruce's fear of bats in the scene where he is in the cave holding the light after he ducks down when the bats fly around him then he slowly stands up, closes his eyes and begins to inhale and exhale.
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(at around 31 mins) The boy, to whom Bruce Wayne gives the fruit, after he steals it at the market, is wearing an old Sheffield United shirt. This is the only time soccer is referenced in the movie.
The license plate on Bruce Wayne's sports car is 375 4265.
The movie's fights employ the keysi method. "Keysi" means "from the heart."
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Tim Booth, who plays Zsaz, is the lead singer of Indie band James.
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Steven Pasquale was considered for the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman.
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(at around 20 mins) Liam Neeson's character states that his wife was "taken" from him. A few years later, Neeson starred in the "Taken" action film series.
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Liam Neeson's role in this film is an similar role to his role in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999). Like Qui-Gon Jinn, Henri Ducard is mentor to Bruce Wayne, and is a member of the League of Shadows, which is a ninja cult, and Ducard trains Wayne as a ninja.
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Lucy Russell: (at around 1h 9 mins) the female lead from Following (1998), Christopher Nolan's first film, plays a guest in the restaurant, and has the second most lines of any female in the movie, second only to Katie Holmes (Rachel Dawes).
John Nolan: (at around 1h 45 mins) the uncle of Christopher Nolan plays the birthday party guest who tells Bruce Wayne that "the apple has fallen very far from the tree."
Jeremy Theobald: (at around 2h) the male lead from Following (1998), Christopher Nolan's first film, plays the younger of the two Gotham Water Board Technicians.
Larry Franco: one of the film's Producers plays a police officer during the chase sequence.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

In the early minutes of each film in the trilogy, the main villain (Ra's Al Ghul, Joker, Bane) disguises himself as one of his own henchmen, and there is a conversation about said villain in each scene.
(at around 2h 10 mins) The Joker playing card presented to Batman at the end of the film is a replica of the Joker Card from the 1989 graphic novel "Arkham Asylum" by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean. It carries an evidence label, this label reads that the officer who discovered it was a J. Kerr, one of the Joker's favorite aliases (Joe Kerr) in the comic books.
When the prisoners are all released from Arkham, briefly visible is Mr. Zsasz, a serial killer from the comics with tally marks scarred into his skin, representing each of his victims. Mr. Zsasz also appears in the courtroom in the beginning of the film where he is being transferred to Arkham Asylum by Dr. Crane.
Christian Bale is the youngest actor to play Batman, being thirty at the time he played the character. Michael Keaton and Adam West were 38 years old when they played Bruce Wayne in Batman (1989) and Batman (1966), meanwhile Val Kilmer and George Clooney were both 36 years old for Batman Forever (1995) and Batman & Robin (1997), respectively.
(at around 1h 40 mins) Ducard's line "But is Ra's Al Ghul immortal?" is an in-joke, since the comic book version of the character is over 600 years old (and has been killed and resurrected many times) thanks to a device called the Lazarus Pits. Christopher Nolan chose to abstain from all fantasy elements from his version of Batman.
This is the only Batman film in the Christopher Nolan's trilogy that does not open with a criminal or supervillain committing some sort of crime.
Body count: 27.
(at around 1h 18 mins) Scarecrow's (Cillian Murphy's) and Batman's (Christian Bale's) first encounter is more like Batman: The Animated Series: Nothing to Fear (1992) than the comics. Both titles feature Batman trying to foil Scarecrow's arson attempt, failing and being drugged by the villain's fear toxin.
There is no reference in Batman Begins to Ra's Al Ghul having any daughters; however, his daughter Talia is mentioned in the novelization by Ra's and Talia's creator Denny O'Neil.
Despite not being "Year One", there are a few references to Year One. The line "You're a good cop. One of the few," Batman using sonar (hidden in his boot heel) to call on the bats while being attacked by police, and the ending (although done differently) where Batman's "next case" is The Joker).
The Bat Symbol at the beginning of each film in the trilogy foreshadows something that happens later. In this case the Bat Symbol is made up of bats and it symbolizes Batman using the sonar to call the Bats to distract the cops while he escapes from Arkham Asylum with Rachel.
A clue to Ducard's true identity is given by the fact that his twin mustaches are the same shape as Ra's Al Ghul's trademark goatees.
In the comics, Ra's Al-Ghul is Middle Eastern, however he is portrayed by Ken Watanabe (who is Japanese) and Liam Neeson (who is Northern Irish).
(at around 25 mins) The scene of Joe Chills shooting, if paused at a certain frame, emulates the infamous photo of Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald. The frame is shown in the films visual guidebook.
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(at around 1h 45 mins) In Wayne Manor, Ra's Al Ghul says that Jonathan Crane doesn't know the plan, and that Crane thinks the plan is to hold the city for ransom. In The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Bane publicly holds the city ransom for the League of Shadows.
In each part of the trilogy Batman/Bruce Wayne has either a friend who turns into the villain or vice versa. In this one, Ra's Al Ghul trains Bruce Wayne then turns against him.
(at around 2h 5 mins) In the shot of the newspaper. the story about Bruce Wayne's mansion burning down is credited to Julie Ochipinti, the name of the movie's Assistant Set Decorator.
The ultrasonic "bat caller" that Batman uses in his escape from the GCPD in Arkham, is another reference from Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli's Batman: Year One series. In the issue Batman mentions it's a shame he can't patent it, it would be worth a fortune.
In his autobiography, Rutger Hauer wrote that he chose to accept the role of Mr. Earle, the executive of Wayne Enterprises, because he saw Earle as the kind of man who would be ruthless in his dealings with others, but also quick to accept his defeat, which is what happens in the end.
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(at around 1h 40 mins) When Ducard/Ra's Al Ghul reappears at Bruce's party, their debate about destroying Gotham or not, is somehow similar to the debate between Abraham and God in Genesis 18:22-33, Ducard acts like God, who want to eliminate all evils, and Bruce acts like Abraham, that still has hope in Gotham's people, and don't want to kill innocent people in the city. Unlike Ducard, however, God allowed Abraham to find any innocent people in the city and they would be saved. That is why only Lot and his family were saved.
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Batman's origin story in this film (learning ancient arts in Tibet, going from a wealthy young man to a man with nothing to lose, learning to be a more noble and selfless person) has been called into question by comic book fans because it is practically identical to the origin story of the Marvel character Doctor Strange.
In the introduction to both the characters of Ducard and Ra's Al Ghul, Ducard's character makes it clear that they are two distinctive characters from the Batman franchise. However, the identity of Ra's Al Ghul seems to bounce back and forth between Liam Neeson and Ken Watanabe whenever Ducard addresses Bruce Wayne in the film. To make a clear distinction, according to the comic background, Henri Ducard is referred to as Ra's Al Ghul's personal spokesperson, and is very much a normal human being. Ra's Al Ghul spends his time bathing in Lazarus Pit to claim his immortality. This means, beyond Ducard's death on the tram train, the scene of Ducard in The Dark Knight Rises (2012) would be referred to as a mirage to Bruce.
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(at around 20 mins) Ducard mentions to Bruce that he had a wife. In The Dark Knight Rises (2012) it is revealed Miranda Tate (Marion Cotillard) is Ducard's daughter Talia al Ghul.
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