The 9/20/14 BOF Mailbag
Author: Bill "Jett" Ramey (Follow @BATMANONFILM)
September 20, 2014

Thanks for all the questions and keep them coming via EMAIL, BOF's FACEBOOK PAGE, or on BOF's TWITTER. On to this week's #BOFmailbag...

Jett you talk a lot about your BOF accomplishments, but is there something you regret doing during your time running site? (via email)

JETT SAYS: Kyle, yes there is. Back in 2007 while THE DARK KNIGHT was filming in Chicago, I ran a story with a more than subtle hint that The Batmobile – AKA “The Tumbler” – was going to blow up in the film. I have NO idea why in the hell I ran that story as it goes against everything I believe in and stand for. I quickly took it down and immediately posted a mea culpa on BOF apologizing to both my fans and to the filmmakers. Frankly, it was a bit of an epiphany than made me even more against spoilers than ever. Yep, that was my biggest BOF mistake and I’m still rather embarrassed about it. But you gotta own up!

JETT SAYS: Not necessarily; I think that Warner Bros. has gotten a little more liberal with their DC properties when it comes to them being regulated to film or TV – especially with the Batman Universe. 15 or so years ago, anything “Batman” was reserved for film endeavors only. While I believe that Batman himself is still off-limits when it comes to live-action TV, Warner Bros./DC Comics are OK with a Batman Universe on the big screen (BATMAN v SUPERMAN and future solo Batfleck Batflicks) and TV (GOTHAM, TITANS) concurrently…as long as The Dark Knight himself is never included. AND…

Before anyone asks, I don’t think any separate live-action Batman universe – be it in the movies or on television – will exist in the same universe. In other words, David Mazouz’s Bruce Wayne is the same as Ben Affleck’s, etc., etc., etc. You know what I’m sayin’?

With regards to this year’s new DC shows and the rumors of possible future projects like THE FLASH, GOTHAM, SUPERGIRL, TITANS, which series are you most excited for? (via email)

JETT SAYS: Dave, GOTHAM – that’s the only one of these confirmed or rumored shows that I’m interested in watching. I’ll probably give THE FLASH a looksee (Hey, I’ve yet to get into ARROW…so sue me!), but I have zero interest in these projects based on DC Comics properties…except for CONSTANTINE which you didn’t mention Dave. I’ll definitely be watching it and GOTHAM and THE FLASH…maybe.

I would be interested in a Tim Burton “Batman 3” as a DC Universe Animated Original Movies. I think that would be a cool thing to do – I was always interested in what he had planned if ever he got to do a third film. What do you think?

JETT SAYS: Well Peter, I think Mr. Burton said what he wanted to say about Batman with his BATMAN RETURNS as that was his take and interpretation of Batman. Regardless, Tim wanted to do a second sequel to BATMAN ’89 and Mr. Schumacher’s BATMAN FOREVER – though he would’ve directed a version of the same script – probably turned out A LOT different had Tim helmed it. But Mr. Burton was, well, “invited to leave” and the rest is Batman on film history. ANYWAY…

Peter, I’m sorry to have to disagree with you here brother, but I kinda like Schumacher’s BATMAN FOREVER (relatively, that is) and have no desire to see “Burton’s Batman” in animated form as either a sequel or prequel. And I promise I’m not trying to rain on your parade, but I don’t think we’ll ever see a “Burton Batman” DCU Animated Original Movie either.

Why are you not a fan of Grant Morrison's work on Batman? (via email)

JETT SAYS: Thanks for the question Dr. B. I think that many folks who read this site think that I “hate” all of Grant Morrison’s Batman stuff. However, that’s not totally true. I was a big fan of Mrant Gorrison’s run on BATMAN from the beginning through “BATMAN, R.I.P.” On the other hand, I despised the whole Omega Sanction BS in FINAL CRISIS and the subsequent Batman stories (THE RETURN OF BRUCE WAYNE and BATMAN, INC. that followed in its wake – BATMAN AND ROBIN notwithstanding (LOVED that one).

Frankly, I had a MAJOR issue with Mr. Morrison seemingly hijacking, for a lack of a better word, the entire Batman comic book universe for several years. Personally, I liked what Paul Dini was doing on DETECTIVE COMICS back then over GM’s BATMAN.

Adam, the bottom line is that Mr. Morrison’s Batman sensibilities and mine are very, Very, VERY different. There’s no doubt that he loves Batman, but that doesn’t mean I have to love his Batman work. Cheers! Oh yeah…

ARKHAM ASYLUM: A SERIOUS HOUSE ON SERIOUS EARTH is not a “Batman Classic” and tremendously overrated.

JETT SAYS: Close. I’ve heard that the gray body suit is a “dark gray” and that the belt is black. Batfleck’s suit has more in common with the Burton/Schumacher/Nolan suits from the previous films than folks know or want to admit. That bodysuit AIN’T “cloth” and Ben’s Batman is definitely wearing “armor.”

Do you think we’ll ever see a “Director’s Cut” of BATMAN FOREVER?

JETT SAYS: Trey, as much as I’d love to see one, I do not. For one thing, the BATMAN FOREVER we saw in 1995 and watch via our DVD’s/Blu-ray’s IS Mr. Schumacher’s “Director’s Cut” and he’s very proud of the film. However, I’m not totally ruling out an “Extended Cut” someday that might give us an alternate, and probably better, version of the film…but I’m not holding my breath. BUT...

Several years ago, BOF posted a very in-depth article about how BATMAN FOREVER would have turned out if all the cut scenes were included and the original script wasn't altered in editing. To read it, CLICK HERE.

You may have answered this, but I don't recall seeing, it so I'll ask again: What do you feel the chances are of getting some sort of Robin or Nightwing cameo, or at least a backstory, in BATMAN v SUPERMAN? Do you feel they'll address it at all in the movie?

JETT SAYS: We’ve heard rumors about a Nightwing cameo in BvS, but so far, there’s been no casting to indicate that is actually happening. Perhaps Chris Terrio cut that out of the film when he took over the script. Regardless, here’s what I think: If this Batman is in his mid-40s and has been “Batmanning” for nearly 20 years, then the entire “Batman Universe” exists – including Robin(s). Now, will we see a Robin in BvS? I don’t know. I’ve heard whispers we’ll see a Robin costume on display in the Batcave and it’ll be inferred that at least one Robin died in the line of duty. Of course, if you're a longtime BOF reader, you know that I've been hinting this for a while now.

You've often mentioned the BATMAN FOREVER “Director's Cut.” Could it have been darker? Could lines like “I'll get drive-thru” be deleted from the film?

JETT SAYS: BATMAN FOREVER is getting some love this week!

There is no “Director’s Cut” of BATMAN FOREVER. However, there are many scenes that were filmed that would’ve made the movie a bit more coherent and, yes, a bit “darker.” All of this stuff was filmed, but didn’t make Schmacher’s final cut of the movie. Like I said previously, perhaps one day Warner Bros. will put together and “Extended/Alternate Cut” of FOREVER that’s a more accurate depiction of the final script…but I doubt it’ll happen. And personally, I liked the “I’ll get drive-thru” line. There were other things in that film *cough* Tommy Lee Jones’ Two Face *cough* that are FAR sillier and annoying.

The Burton and Schumacher films make an odd quadrilogy with little to no continuity. Is there any part of you that wishes that they would have just done 3 with burton and 3 with Schumacher? I have to admit I would rather have two trilogies than this odd Burton-Schumacherverse. Thoughts, Jett?

JETT SAYS: That’s an interesting way to look at it Adam. I’m with you on the continuity thing, even though Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, and George Clooney all played the same Batman. I don’t know if I would have wanted to see a third Batman film from either Burton or Schumacher to be honest. I guess I’m happy with the way it all played out. If Warner Bros. hadn’t driven the Batman film franchise into the ground in 1997, we probably wouldn’t have gotten back on track with Chris Nolan’s “Dark Knight Trilogy.” Things happen for a reason you know.

Which villains would you liked to have seen Chris Nolan take on?

JETT SAYS: Nick, Hugo Strange comes to mind first. I also wish that Chris and co. had included The Penguin as one of the mob bosses in THE DARK KNIGHT. I wouldn’t have minded seeing a “Nolanized” version of Mr. Freeze – that certainly would’ve been interesting. But ultimately, I’m very happy with the way it all went down in those three films.

In all your years of running BOF, what has been the rumor for any of the three Chris Nolan films or BATMAN v SUPERMAN that you've despised the most?

JETT SAYS: Josh, I wouldn’t say that there’s been any rumors that I have despised. What got my blood boiling is the posting of blatant spoilers online by various outlets or by fans on fanboy message boards. The pictures of Heath Ledger as The Joker without makeup and in the GPD uniform and the reveal that Liam Neeson was making a cameo appearance as Ra’s Al Ghul in THE DARK KNIGHT RISES quickly come to mind. It’s this sort of stuff that made me a little happy when a regular dude got over on several outlets with his fake BvS script. I guess my thing is that I despise bad fanboy behavior over these films (casting freakouts top the list) and websites posting any and everything – true or false, spoiler or non-spoiler – about Batman on films. Y’all know what I mean?

What would be more satisfying for you right now: A Cowboys run at the Super Bowl? Or Affleck, Snyde,r and Terrio so nailing it with BvS that people have to publicly eat their words?

JETT SAYS: Ha! That’s a tough question! Luckily, I’ve been alive for all five of the Cowboys’ Super Bowl wins…but I’d like to see ‘em get one more in my lifetime. On the other hand, it would be awfully sweet to hear the telling silence from Affleck haters once we see Ben nail it as Batman in BvS. Since I think the latter is easier to achieve, call me a greedy fan and give me one more Cowboys Super Bowl victory!

Jett, you’ve run BOF since 1998 and pretty much seen and done it all. Will you ever retire from BOF? A longtime reader and fan from Jersey! (via email)

JETT SAYS: Rob, shout out to the Garden State! I’d be lying if I said that I’ve never thought about “retiring” from BOF or shutting the site down. And I agree with you that I’ve seen and done just about everything when it comes to covering Batman on film. I’ve met all my heroes (Michael Uslan, Chris Nolan) and have done A LOT of cool stuff due to running this site. Sometimes I think to myself, “What’s there left to do?”

However, BOF is such an ingrained part of me, that I can’t see myself ever retiring or actually shutting the site down. I am actually retiring from my “real job” in three years, so I guess BOF will then become my fulltime job. Plus, I want to write a couple of books at that point in my life as well: one about the history of Batman on film and another about which will include all of my experiences in running the site.

So Rob, I guess the answer to your question is no. I’m going to keep on BOF’ing ‘til I can’t BOF anymore!

The mailbag continues after the jump!

JETT SAYS: From what I’ve been told Alex, SHAZAM! will not be part of this new DC Cinematic Universe and will be its own thing. I think that the DDCU will be grounded and based in pseudo-realism like we saw in MAN OF STEEL. Thus, I don’t think there’s room for magical beings like Captain Marvel or Black Adam. Plus, I think SHAZAM! will be geared more to a younger audience and will be very “PG,” if you will.

What/whom do you see as the major threat in the JUSTICE LEAGUE movie? Do you think Apokolips is a possibility, or would he not be used because of the "similarities" to Thanos in the MCU? I dread that inevitable fan war!

JETT SAYS: The Legion of Doom!

Just kidding! ANYWAY…

Mike, I think the “major threat” in JUSTICE LEAGUE is going to be one that’s more realistic and Earthly than fans suspect or expect. I honestly believe you can rule out a cosmic threat such as Darkseid or an alien invasion. I’m looking forward to seeing what Terrio and Snyder (and Affleck) come up with.

WB seems to be making sure we don't get multiple versions of DC heroes across their TV and movie properties, rightly so in my opinion. However, it seems unavoidable that other characters such as villains will be duplicated, especially since ARROW is using so many Batman villains. Ra's Al Ghul is set to appear in the third season, and the series has already featured Deathstroke (who would presumably be a no brainer for the reported Teen Titans series). Do you think this could be a problem?

JETT SAYS: Matthew, yes, it could be, but I think all is going to be OK. I believe that Warner Bros./DC will limit the number of incarnations and some will exist only in TV or only in film (like Batman). I think Warner Bros./DC started to changed their minds on this topic back in the mid-2000’s when SMALLVILLE was on TV and SUPERMAN RETURNS was released into theaters. I believe each project – be it ARROW and GOTHAM on TV and BATMAN v SUPERMAN and JUSTICE LEAGUE on film – will exist in their own unique universes and be their own thing.

Why do you think there hasn't been an animated series quite as successful or strong since anything from the DCAU? The closest I can think of is YOUNG JUSTICE; even though it was cancelled after two seasons, it got a lot of love and many fans still campaign for its return. THE BATMAN may have lasted four seasons too, but it didn't get anywhere near the success of BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES or even SUPERMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES. Why do you think DC's not as committed to animated series as they once were?

JETT SAYS: I’ll let Paul Dini answer that question Ricky. (Hint: It’s apparently all about boys and toys.)

Arrow said he would like to see Green Lantern on TV next, but he knows nothing about it Is that a hint for the rumored Flash/GL project on TV, rather than on film?

JETT SAYS: I’m of the belief that we will not see Green Lantern on film anytime soon and that the rumored Flash/Green Lantern “film” is for TV and will be part of the THE FLASH/ARROW universe.

A life-long Batman fan, Bill "Jett" Ramey
is the founder of BATMAN-ON-FILM.COM.
He likes Elvis, Rock-N-Roll,
The University of Texas, cold beer,
Dallas Cowboys Football, and of course...
He resides in the GREAT state of TEXAS with his lovely wife, three kids, and two Boston Terriers.

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