After a bit of speculation, it was confirmed last week that Robert Pattinson would be making the leap into comic book movies as the new Batman for Warner Bros. While hunts for leading actors to play the newest version of a costumed hero can take a long time and involve seeing a bunch of different performers, new details have emerged that reveal that Pattinson was always the heavy favorite to take on the role, and his casting was a “quick” call that was made not long after meeting with the actor and getting a look at him wearing a previously-used Batsuit.
The article about Pattinson’s casting comes from The Hollywood Reporter, who got the inside scoop from sources close to the casting process. While news broke about the actor’s possible casting a few weeks ago, nothing was a done deal until last week. The story is that it was between Pattinson and X-MEN star Nicholas Hoult – both of whom were brought in to put on an old Batsuit so director Matt Reeves could see how they looked as the Dark Knight. Although that all must have been very intense, one insider said the whole process was “quicker than normal.”
“(Reeves) wanted very specific things,” said one insider about this screen test of the two actors. “He knew what he was looking for.”
Perhaps this was because Reeves had been wanting the actor for the part before Pattinson even knew he was up for it. The writer/director was impressed by his work in movies like GOOD TIME and HIGH LIFE, and it’s said he was “considered early in the process” to play this new take on the classic character. Avoiding both the origin story and the seasoned vet angle of past movies, Reeves’ take supposedly finds the character at around age 30, still figuring how to be a super crime fighter in Gotham City.
Reeves was also impressed by Hoult, including his turn in last year’s Oscar-winning movie THE FAVOURITE, so when it came time for the actual casting process it was really only down to those two actors. One factor that probably played a big role in Pattinson being cast was that he has never been in a superhero movie before, which studios like, the logic being that audiences who go to see all these movies wouldn’t be confused as to which series he belongs to. As for Hoult, he’s currently playing Hank McCoy/Beast in the X-MEN movies, and though it’s not clear if that took him out of the running, in the end, that is something studios take into consideration when it comes to marketing.
At the end of the day, Pattinson seemed to always be the top choice, and now he’s the official choice. Now with the contracts signed he will soon be off for some physical training to get into Batman shape so that he can fill out his own Batsuit soon, as filming is expected to begin sometime in early 2020.