Rumor: Is Tom Hardy Playing Hugo Strange in ‘The Dark Knight Rises’? [Update]

Ever since the news broke that Tom Hardy had been cast in The Dark Knight Rises people have wondered what role he would play. Fans across the internet have come up with a lot of ideas, from a Gotham cop, to the main villain. The following information is a rumor, and should be treated as such.

I’ve heard that Tom Hardy is in fact going to play the villain. My source strongly believes that Hardy is going to be playing Hugo Strange. This is the first bit of information from this person that I’m publishing, however they have been accurate in the past. For example, this person told me weeks before the recent Christoper Nolan interview that The Riddler would not be appearing in the film. They also mentioned that Rachel Weisz and Anne Hathaway were in the running for the lead female role a couple of weeks before Deadline posted their list. Given their track record so far, I wanted to post this Hardy news that I received via email. Again, this should just be taken as rumor. I’m posting this for the sake of discussion since we’ve hit a dry spell with The Dark Knight Rises news. What do you guys think? Would you like to see Hugo Strange as the villain?

Update 12/17/10: A “very solid source” tells BOF that Tom Hardy is not playing Hugo Strange. Meanwhile, AICN claims to have seen “proof” that Hardy is Strange. We should know who he’s definitely playing some time early next year.

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  • Justin

    I’d actually prefer Black Mask but okay! Dr. Thomas Hugo would be alright with me, the only problem I have with that is the fact they already had a doctor villain from Arkam (Dr. Crane AKA Scarecrow) in Batman Begins.

    • RunnerX13

      Batman does have a lot of doctors in his rouge gallery; Dr. Fries, Dr. Isley, Dr. Quinzel, Dr. Arkman.

  • Justin

    In Batman Begins

  • Eh, Im not really too familiar with hugo strange. But it doesnt really get me exicted. He’s no joker for sure. It reminds me of something the role Scarecrow played in the first film BB. While Catwoman will have a big role as well.

    Anne Hathaway or Rachel Weisz as Catwoman? Hmmm, I think id prefer Rachel Weisz
    Ill always remember her role in the Mummy movies.

    • Not necessarily Catwoman…
      Could be Talia Al Ghul.
      Rachel Weisz for Talia,please!

  • hehe, you didnt use the Bronson pic which shows him being practically identical to Strange (save for the mustache) ? boo-urns! :P

    • Haha I didn’t really see much of a resemblance except for the bald head. Maybe in a future Hardy/Strange post I will! :)

  • TheseScars

    what type of odd interpetation would they go for with Hardy playing Strange? Would they want someone older? Taller? He doesn’t seem to fit Black Mask or Strange like Eckhart fit Harvey, Heath fit the Joker, Neison fit R’as, or Murphy the Scarecrow….Hardy is a pretty short guy, if you notice in Bronson he is shot from the waste up a lot and when he’s not he’s tangled fighting someone, alone, or the other person is sitting down.

    I see Strange as a older thicker bodied psych and Hardy just seems to young and quick for that. Would love to see someone like Tom Berenger shave the ole noggin and get in a Batsuit for the Hugo Strange role but if their going with Hardy their putting it in capable hands. I’m sure if Hardy does end up being Hugo Strange and not Deadshot, Black Mask, or whoever he’ll pull it off in a incredible way. I can’t believe it anyways that Hardy is playing the villain because I’ve been calling that since I saw Bronson last year. I really don’t care what he plays because he’s bloody brilliant.

  • I´d also rather to see him as Black Mask.
    He screams Black Mask to me.

  • JohnLees

    Hugo Strange has been my top choice for Tom Hardy to play since The Riddler was ruled out. I think he has a potential to tie in really well to the overarching narrative and the status quo that was set up from the conclusion of “The Dark Knight”.

  • Simon

    I’ve always seen Hardy as Thomas Elliot/Hush. But yeah, I can see him as Hugo^^. So if this is the case, we get a villain of the same age like Heath’s Joker had also ± the same age as Bruce. Good idea that Hardy/Hugo therefore ± has the same age.
    And the female villain? It’ll probably be Talia. … But rather a detective, I have my doubts about Catwoman …
    Weisz and Theron are my favorites to play the female roles.
    Can’t wait for this film and I really hope it’ll be completely shot in IMAX!!!!!

  • TheseScars

    If the rumor is true about Hardy playing Hugo Strange that means Nolan is not going to follow the canon look of the character. Hardy it seems will be filming Mad Max very close to the timing of filming TDKR. Whatever look Hardy has going for TDKR will appear in Mad Max so expect it to look similar to what he has going on right now. Unless the rumor is off and he’s playing someone else…who knows.

  • I’d like that the Riddle would appear in the movie. But this information can be nice in the Nolan’s hands, let’s see

  • TheseScars

    Remember those Billy Zane rumors a few months back? Something about him being looked at for a role in a Nolan film Batman or Superman possibly….his size, that dome, I’m sure he can rock the shit out of some round sunglasses…was he being looked at for Hugo Strange? I stand behind Hardy in any role but Zane is looking like a better fit.

    “Listen to you friend Billy Zane, he’s a cool dude.”

  • Matt

    First thing I have to say is, who the hell is Hugo Strange? Admittedly, I’m not some super Bat-fan, but I’m pretty damn knowledgeable about Batman and all the lore, so this guy must be some new villain they made up within somewhat recent years (along with some others). Anyway, considering no one knows who this character is, I seriously doubt he’s the villain. Try a character people actually know or else no one is gonna see this but the really hardcore fans. And that won’t be enough to help the studio make their money back. Hell, the first in this new franchise with the Scarecrow was barely worth a watch as Scarecrow isn’t as big as basically all the villains in the original Batman movies. I don’t read comics, so that’s probably why I have know clue who this guy or some of the other guys are that the other commentors are talking about. All I know is if they go this far off for the a villain, then this will be a rental for me like the first one. Bring on Catwoman, Penguin, Riddler, Poison Ivy, Bane, Clayface, maybe even the Croc guy, hell even the Ghul’s. Any/all of those before getting into newer characters that hardly anyone knows.

    • Hugo Strange was one of Batman’s 1st villains in the comics, he appeared before The Joker & Catwoman for example.

      You can learn more about him here:

      I agree though, it would be hard to market a film around a villain who isn’t as “mainstream” as The Joker was. I think Catwoman is still a likely candidate.

      • With the grace of God,Catwoman is not in the movie.
        For the love of Him!
        have nightmares thinking abt Catwoman can be in.

    • TheseScars

      Listen to your friend, he’s a cool dude.

  • One-eye Willie

    I’d prefer Black Mask… fits perfectly on Hardy´s profile and shape! Yeah, Strange is ok too, but he needs at least one brute force freak to do well on the movie…

  • Collin V.

    This perfectly fits Hardy. I’m up for it.

  • alx.

    I like the idea. Black Mask or Dr. Strange were my total favorite picks.
    But I think that Hugo it’s a perfect choice for this 3rd movie, if they do of course, the post-Crisis Hugo Strange which is a psychiatrist who’s been trying to unmask who Batman is, as he is an outlaw to the Police, but becomes so obssesed he founds out who Batman is and wants to take his place. (Pre-crisis is a mad scientist, not very cool).
    Plus the guy it’s a genius, and knows Batman’s identity, it feels more of an epic villain for the last chapter of Nolan than Black Mask (who’s cool but it’s just a phsyco mob leader)
    There’s a lot that they can work on Hugo and make it another awsome villan like Joker, Two-Face or Scarecrow (Neeson’s Ra’s sucked).

  • Dantha

    Sounds like a perfect addition to Nolan’s Batuniverse to me!

    According to the comics Hugo Strange discovers Batman’s identity, becomes obsessed with Bats, even going so far as to imitate him. Post crisis apparently he uses money from Carmine Falcone’s mob to create monster men (unlikely this will happen) but there is a link there in the comics to a baddie already established in Nolan’s films.

    What better way to wrap up the end of the trilogy than with a Batman imposter running around, Bats clears his name, frames Strange to take the fall for the crimes committed at the end of the TDK and they all live happily ever after.

  • Anonymous

    Hardy seems a little bit young to play Hugo but I wouldnt be upset to see it

  • BrazilianBatFan

    I thought Latino Review was a little hostile towards your site in their report of your rumor. That was unnecessary. Your efforts here are great. Keep giving us rumors. Me likey! lol

    • Haha I saw. I actually left a comment on the post. I was talking to the author on Twitter about it too. She’s nice, and I don’t have any hard feelings towards it.

  • TheseScars

    If Hugo Strange is adapted pretty faithfully I wonder if we will see Hardy in a real Batsuit. TDK had a costume change for Batman so I’m assuming he will rework it again for some reason in TDKR and it’s going to be awesome to see Hardy in the Batsuit if they go that far with the character. So if I had to take a guess I would think there would be 2 new suits or some sort of alteration to TDK suit (Which I thought was perfect, even if he worked with the backpack cape more in TDKR that looked so sick) I guess assuming there would be a new suit and some new gadgets is obvious though but the Strange thing could be interesting

  • Tmelbz

    If it really is Strange, that means Batman would be revealed to be Bruce Wayne to someone 3 consecutive times… Worst secret identity ever?!

  • One-eye Willie

    I think Hugo Strange will be in TDKR, but Tom Hardy´s wont play him. Hardy fits perfectly playing sgt. Max Cort – a violent and anti-batman cop wich is in a task force to capture the Bat!

  • Keeghan

    I think they should cast the girl from underworld Kate Beckinsale to do catwoman. Shes good at doing those fight scenes and shes kind`ve pretty. I dunno its just my opinion.

  • Montycristo24

    Jaime Murray (Lila in Dexter, season 2) should definitely be in contention for the catwoman role if there is one.

  • Matt

    I was hoping Catwoman would not be in the next movie, but, with the female lead rumors and the use of the Prey series, it seems like she might be. I am a fan of the concept though, so it is great.

  • carl

    PLEASE!!! no anne hathaway!!!! shes to sweet for ANY rol.

  • 2012hopeilivethatlong

    Less see if Mr. Hardy can convince us, he’s made for the role. The undesirable fate of following Ledger’s performance and failing to deliver shouldn’t be wished upon anyone. After all, Mr. Hardy was one of the cogs that buried the *TNG* era of Star Trek films for good. He killed Jean Luc and Co’s careers. Can he do the same for Bruce Wayne?

    And lets not for the 3rd movie/second sequel curse. Thinks are looking UP for the Dark Knight Rises. Aren’t they?

  • TheseScars

    I am still not convinced Hardy is playing Hugo Strange. I think Hardy is playing Max Cort and the character will be rolled in with Deadshot instead of being called Night Scourge. I did a quick manip of Hugo Strange played by Viggo Mortensen…he’s kind of unrecognizable as would anyone with a shaved head, big beard, and glasses…but the guy is a top notch actor and I still think the part is yet to be cast. If anyone wants to post this manip on SHH that would be awesome, I can’t..Figured Strange would have the Begins suit if anything..

  • Joshua

    What? What happened to Johnny Depp? He’d b so much better.

  • Chocosaurus

    This would be fantastic, if not the Riddler than definitely either Strange or Black Mask, I feel those are the only two villains who’d go with the vibe Nolan has generated in his reinvigorated Batman films. I personally don’t like the idea of a female villain as it’s a bit unrealistic an approach when you consider Nolan’s favouritism of psychologically damaged male leads, but if anyone can pull it off it’s Christopher Nolan. If Nolan can integrate Black Mask into this film then it’d be perfect but I feel with the purported female lead(s) then he won’t overwhelm it with another villain.

  • le-hunt

    weird choice to go for a quite “confidential” villain for the next one. will it be “mass friendly” ? warner will have its say on it. as trustworthy as Nolan is, there are still as much money as can be to make out of the last installment.

    to me the riddler was the obvious choice. I mean: famous rogue, interesting at that, and would completely mold into the “who is batman ?” plotline that springs out of TDK’s ending. does Nolan want to go the opposite way, thinking that this choice would have been too predictable ?

  • Ola

    I know it´s gonna be a great movie who ever they choose as the new villan. Kind of hope they don´t shoot the movie in 3d, the scenery and effects takes to much from the movie. Looking forward to see the mansion rebuildt and the new lair with all new gadgets he might use =) Longed for this movie the minute i steped out of the movietheater after watching TDN

  • I choose not to believe BOF. Jett hasn’t had any actual “sources” since the Begins days.

  • One-eyed Willie

    He´s definitely too young for Hugo´s role… I told you guys before, and I´ll repeat again: IF TDKR is based on PREY graphic novel, Hardy fits perfectly in MAX CORT´s role…

  • M6000

    well something like this would definitely tie in well with the upcoming Batman game(Batman Arkham City) considering Hugo Strange is making an appearance in it as the main villian.

  • Nave Torment

    Hugo Strange isn’t an appealing antagonist for TDKR at all; if anything, he would be a rehash of what Jonathan Crane was in the first film. You can only do psychoanalysts as bad guys for so long.

    A much better candidate would be Hush, and no I’m not saying that simply because he shares a name with the proposed actor. Certainly not.

    Black Mask is an interesting choice too, but not as the primary antagonist.

    But truth be told, the most appealing antagonist by now would have to be Selina Kyle. Not that Hardy has to play her or anything.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think he shaved his head or is growing any facial hair yet. It’s just his normal look. Just looks like he got a fresh hair cut for the Laker game along with his normal stubble..

  • Cavedweller

    I’m just glad to hear they’re almost done and soon, no bale as THE BATMAN. This whole series was doomed from the start. One of these days, someone will get it right.