When you’re in a race to take on the role of one of the most recognizable characters in the world, it can be a tough road. From the sounds of it in a new interview Robert Pattinson has given to Variety, the road to Batman was both difficult and fun at the same time.
As rumors erupted in May that Pattinson was on the shortlist to become Batman, he was on a plane to the Cannes film festival, worried that seatmate Christopher McQuarrie – director of Mission: Impossible – Fallout – had seen him Googling his own name for an hour. At this stage, he had not yet had his audition, but it was scheduled, and he was worried this was going to kill his chances before he even got in the room.
Upon arriving in France, he was studying the pages for his test for The Batman while also dodging questions from the press at the screening of his film, The Lighthouse. It was also at this time that the backlash began on social media over his potential casting. “To be honest, it was less vitriolic than I was expecting,” Pattinson told Variety. “It’s much more fun when you’re an underdog. There’s no expectation of you.”
The surprising news is that it seems Pattinson has dreamed of this role since he was a child having grown up on Tim Burton’s Batman films. He even admitted to owning a Batman costume, but refused to say how old he was when he wore it for fear of ridicule.
The Casting Process
Following the kerfuffle in Cannes, the rumored timeline was correct that he flew directly to Los Angeles for his test. It was at this stage that Matt Reeves had him put into a Batsuit. “I put it on. I remember saying to Matt, ‘It does feel quite transformative!’ He was like, ‘I would hope it does! You’re literally in the Batsuit.’” Pattinson went on to describe the moment, telling Variety, “You do feel very powerful immediately. And it’s pretty astonishing, something that is incredibly difficult to get into, so the ritual of getting into it is pretty humiliating. You’ve got five people trying to shove you into something. Once you’ve got it on, it’s like, ‘Yeah, I feel strong, I feel tough, even though I had to have someone squeezing my butt cheeks into the legs.’”
Five days later he was on the set of Christopher Nolan’s Tenet when he got the call that he had the part. During the suit test, he had become concerned about how much it limited his movements. Pattinson recalls, “It’s so bizarre. I was like, ‘What a coincidence this is happening. It’s absolutely crazy.” As Nolan had directed the Dark Knight Trilogy, he turned to him immediately. “I was talking about things to do with the Batsuit,” said Pattinson, “How to get more movements in it.”
Surprisingly, Pattinson won’t confirm if he has more than one film on his contract, saying “I don’t know anything. I’ve got an idea how to do about four scenes, and then I’m working on the rest gradually.”
For now, The Batman is due to begin filming this winter and is set to hit theaters on June 25, 2021.