The Oscar winner played the caped crusader in three movies with the director: 2005’s Batman Begins, 2008’s The Dark Knight and 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises.
Known as The Dark Knight trilogy, the movies are regarded by fans and critics as some of the best superhero films made. But when it came time to potentially shoot a fourth movie, Bale put an end to it.
“When they came [to us after ‘Batman Begins’] and said, ‘You want to go make another?’ It was fantastic, but we still said, ‘This is it. We will not get another opportunity,’” Bale, 45, told the Toronto Sun recently. “Then they came and they said, ‘OK, let’s do the third one.’ Chris had always said to me that if we were fortunate to be able to make three we would stop. ‘Let’s walk away after that,’ he said.”
“Then when they inevitably came to us and said, ‘How about a No. 4?’ I said, ‘No. We have to stick to Chris’ dream, which was always to, hopefully, do a trilogy. Let’s not stretch too far and become overindulgent and go for a fourth,’ ” Bale explained.
Bale’s Batman was later replaced by Ben Affleck in 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and 2017’s Justice League. The Bat club will soon be growing when Robert Pattinson takes over the role in the upcoming The Batman.
The actor, 33, was confirmed as the next caped crusader in late May, with director Matt Reeves tweeting a GIF of the actor with three bat emojis.
Reeves is set to direct a trilogy of films for Warner Bros. with Pattinson in the leading role, according to Deadline. The first in the trilogy, The Batman, is expected to be released in 2021.
Reeves told The Hollywood Reporter in January his idea for the films is “very much a point of view-driven, noir Batman tale.”
“It’s told very squarely on his shoulders, and I hope it’s going to be a story that will be thrilling but also emotional,” he continued. “It’s more Batman in his detective mode that we’ve seen in the films.”
As Reeves explained, “The comics have a history of that. [Bruce Wayne] is supposed to be the world’s greatest detective, and that’s not necessarily been a part of what the movies have been.”
“I’d love this to be one where when we go on that journey of tracking down the criminals and trying to solve a crime, it’s going to allow his character to have an arc that he can go through a transformation.”