The September 20, 2015 BOF Mailbag
AUTHOR: Bill "Jett" Ramey (Follow @BATMANONFILM)

Welcome to the latest edition of the BOF MAILBAG! Thanks for all the questions and keep them coming via EMAIL, BOF's FACEBOOK PAGE, or on BOF's TWITTER.

Also, please post your thoughts, feedback, and opinion in the COMMENTS SECTION below!

Now, on with this weekend's mailbag...

You may have addressed this at some point in the past, but is there a chance that any of the DC films that have been announced as part of WB’s long term plans don't get made? If they don't, would that be a disaster; or would they be more likely to adjust and replace those cancelled projects with others?

JETT SAYS: Yes, I do think it’s possible that some of the future DCEU films announced by Warner Bros. may not ultimately come to fruition. I think for sure we’re getting the two JUSTICE LEAGUE movies, WONDER WOMAN, AQUAMAN and the Ben Affleck-directed solo Batman film. Those you can take to the bank. SHAZAM! starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as Black Adam is likely to go down – though I don’t believe it will be a DCEU movie continuity-wise. However, I’m not 100% convinced we’ll ever see THE FLASH, CYBORG, or THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS.

Also, there are films that were not on that list that I do think we’ll end up seeing – a sequel to SUICIDE SQUAD and more solo Batman flicks are prime examples.

I've been scouring the 'net for years to see when MASK OF THE PHANTASM will be upgraded to Blu-ray. So far, the air is dead. Can you use your influence/contacts at WB to see if this may EVER happen? At almost 25 years, this great movie deserves a great treatment – maybe they are waiting for that magic 25th anniversary mark? (EMAIL)

JETT SAYS: Michael, checked in with someone I know who deals with publicity at Warner Bros. Home Video and I’m awaiting their reply. I’d bet a month’s pay (in Monopoly money, of course) that the 25th anniversary of that film in 2017 is a likely date for a Blu-ray/special edition release of MOTP.

First question: During THE DARK KNIGHT’s viral marketing campaign, we got an image of The Joker twiddling his thumbs in the back seat of a car. I know there were "no outtakes," but I don't remember seeing this shot in the film. Is there footage to go along with this? Where does this factor into TDK’s story? Secondly, your spoiler policy seems to have changed significantly since your coverage of “The Dark Knight Trilogy.” You keep cluing us in on this "Desert Batman" scene in BATMAN v SUPERMAN, saying you know exactly what it’s about, but during your coverage of Nolan's “Trilogy” you and we were completely in the dark. Any reason for the change? (EMAIL)

JETT SAYS: The shot of The Joker from THE DARK KNIGHT you are referring to was to take place right before (or after, I don’t remember exactly) he crashed Bruce Wayne’s Harvey Dent fundraiser in the Wayne Penthouse. I’m sure Chris believed it was an unnecessary to include in the film’s final cut, so he, um, cut it.

As far as your second question, nothing had changed regarding my no spoiler policy – I did not, have not, and will not in the future post any spoilers. I haven’t posted anything that would be considered a spoiler during my coverage of BvS. In fact, my no spoiler policy is probably even more stringent than it was back when TDK was in production. There was a lot that I knew about TDK that I never said anything about back then –though nothing I knew about spoiled the film for me.

In regards to “Desert Batman,” yes, I know what it is all about, absolutely (and the "Superman Army" too). However, I’ve never revealed what it is – or isn’t – have I? The only reason that I’m talking a bit about it is because I really didn’t think that that scene would be revealed at all until the film was released. If they hadn’t put that little snippet in trailer #2, I wouldn’t have said a word.

What do you expect to be different in terms of look when it comes to a Batfleck-directed Batman film vs. BvS? Do you think it will look less obviously CGI'ed? It's the one thing I have never really enjoyed about Zack Snyder's films and love about Marvel's (and I am a DC guy all the way).

JETT SAYS: Josh, I think you nailed it: Affleck’s film – I suspect – will use much less CGI than BvS. I expect there will be a lot more practice shots in a Affleck-directed Batman film ala Chris Nolan’s “Dark Knight Trilogy” and David Ayer’s SUICIDE SQUAD.

What do your students/players think of your online alter ego?

JETT SAYS: I don’t know Jason, I don’t recall any of them ever saying anything about it. Maybe a couple have emailed me over the years.

Do you prefer the version of The Penguin that was in BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES in the first three seasons or the version in the revamped new look episodes?

JETT SAYS: Hmm…The character’s first look was a little too much BATMAN RETURNS for my taste, while the revamped look was a throwback to The Penguin’s original comic book aesthetic. I guess if I had to pick, I’d go with the latter.

Why do you think Tyrese has been so quiet since San Diego Comic Con?

JETT SAYS: Because, Chance, he probably realized that talking publicly about these matters isn’t good for business – HIS business.

Warner Bros. have finalized scripts for JUSTICE LEAGUE, WONDER WOMANB and AQUAMAN?

JETT SAYS: Travis, I believe Zack Snyder has said that the script for the JL films is finished – at least the first draft. WONDER WOMAN should be done as they start shooting in about two months. I have no idea what the status for AQUAMAN is presently other than they have a lead (Jason Momoa) and a director (James Wan).

Do you think, like me, that DC Entertainment is setting up "Crisis on Infinity Earths" for, say, 2024?

JETT SAYS: Nope. I highly doubt we’ll see anything like that – especially some sort of crossover film that mixes DCE’s TV and film endeavors.

There have been a few stories that cover Batman's final battle against The Joker (e.g., BATMAN ‘89, THE DARK KNIGHT, THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, BATMAN BEYOND: RETURN OF THE JOKER). How would you rank them?

JETT SAYS: I think that THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS’s Batman vs. The Joker battle is the best no matter what the medium. Chris Nolan’s THE DARK KNIGHT is up there as well. I’d even throw in Scott Snyder’s ENDGAME, but there’s a problem: it’s not going to end up being the “final battle” between those two versions of the character.

Do you think Warner Bros. will ever come out with a serious Batman cartoon similar to BATMAN: THE ANAIMTED SERIES? One with great comic book-inspired stories, solid character development, and well-crafted animation? Just curious ‘cause now seems to be the time. Thanks!

JETT SAYS: John, I think that it’s very likely – and probably a given – than there will be another Batman animated TV series at some point in the future. When that happens and what sort of tone they go with remains to be seen. I think they may be a bit skittish right now due to the failure of BEWARE THE BATMAN – a series I liked quite a bit and 100% believe putting it on Saturday mornings instead of in primetime was a big mistake. Also, the animated Batman movies are big sellers, so perhaps they are running with them when it comes to Batman animation for the time being. Personally, I’ve enjoyed all of Batman’s TV endeavors over the last 20-plus years; here’s hoping we’ll get another sooner rather than later.

What’s your thoughts on DC Entertainment’s announcement regarding Bill Finger? Also, Also, who would win in a fight between The Flash and Green Arrow?

JETT SAYS: Jonathan, it makes me very happy that DCE is doing the right thing by Mr. Finger and his family and officially acknowledging his significant contributions to the character of Batman and the Batman mythos. Frankly, it’s long overdue.

As far as your second question – who would win in a fight between The Flash and Green Arrow – the answer is obvious: The Batman.

Why is Bill Finger just now getting recognition now for his part in the creation of Batman and many of other Batman-related characters? Did he and DC Comics have a falling out or something?

JETT SAYS: Well Chance, I believe most Batman fans have LONG recognized Mr. Finger’s SIGNIFICANT contributions to Batman and the Batman mythos. The bottom line is that Bob Kane hired Bill Finger as a “ghostwriter” for his comic book endeavors as an artist. Mr. Kane did come up with the idea for a character called “Bat-Man.” Kane eventually signed away “ownership” of the character to DC (then called National Comics) for compensation along with an agreement that he would be given a “Batman Created by” credit on all Batman comics (and later, all Batman movies and other media incarnations of the character). Basically, it was a legal cluster-f*ck that kept Mr. Finger – who continued to “ghostwrite” Batman comic book stories into the 1960s – from getting his proper due as the most important influence on the character of Batman back in his formative years.

It's quite obvious that the DC Extended Universe or the DC Cinematic Universe, (or whatever you wanna call it) couldn't have been made without Christopher Nolan’s “Dark Knight Trilogy,” But what about Tim Burton's contribution to Batman cinema? Do you think Burton's contribution was completely overshadowed/forgotten by the studio and the filmmakers? (via EMAIL)

JETT SAYS: I think what Zack Snyder means when he says that Chris laid the foundation for the DCEU is that this film universe had taken on the “relatively realistic” tone that Chris used in the “Trilogy” – albeit not as “realistic” as the Nolan Batman films, of course. The films of the DCEU will be set in “our world” and it’s basically a “what if (insert DC superhero) really existed in our world.” Also, Zack is trying to emulate Chris’ Batman film with the film of the DCEU by taking the source material seriously and attempting to make a “film,” as opposed to fun, popcorn action flicks.

In regards to Tim Burton’s superhero cinema legacy, his BATMAN in 1989 was essentially the first “dark and serious” comic book/superhero film. His place in comic book movie history is secure and respected -- we can just overlook BATMAN RETURNS and pretend it never happened.

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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