Batman returns is the sequel to the critically acclaimed Batman (1989) movie. The movie features Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Michelle Pfeiffer and Christopher Walken and was directed by Tim Burton.
Tim Burton originally didn’t want to do another Batman movie due to mixed emotions from the previous movie, but eventually gave in after Warner Brothers gave him more control to make the movie he wanted. Originally Catwoman was going to be portrayed by Annette Bening but was replaced by Michelle Pfeiffer due Annette falling pregnant.
Danny DeVito wasn’t comfortable in his suit as the penguin but said that it made it easy for him to get into character for the role. He also had to use mouthwash with red / green food colouring mixed in his mouth to ‘to create a grotesque texture of some weird ooze’.
The movie received mostly positive reviews, but some said the movie was too dark, but when your main character is known as the Dark Knight that sounds a bit silly to me.
On the whole this is possibly my favourite of the two Batman movies that Tim Burton made. Michelle Pfeiffer’s portrayal of Catwoman is great and Michael Keaton as Batman is always a charm.
I doubt they will ever do the Dark Knight Returns from the comics as a movie, but if they do it would be great if they could get Michael Keaton to don the hood and cowl again as an older more cynical Batman.
Having defeated the Joker, Batman now faces the Penguin – a warped and deformed individual who is intent on being accepted into Gotham society. Crooked businessman Max Schreck is coerced into helping him become Mayor of Gotham and they both attempt to expose Batman in a different light. Earlier however, Selina Kyle, Max’s secretary, is thrown from the top of a building and is transformed into Catwoman – a mysterious figure who has the same personality disorder as Batman. Batman must attempt to clear his name, all the time deciding just what must be done with the Catwoman.
Facts about Batman Returns:
- Danny Devito stayed in character in between takes.
- Warner Bros. had to constantly submit new Catwoman posters to various cities as many of the bus stop ads were being stolen. It eventually got so bad that police had to patrol the bus stops to catch the people trying to steal the posters before they had a chance to break the Plexiglas.
- The Catwoman suit was vacuum sealed once it was fitted on Michelle Pfeiffer. She only had a short amount of time to do her scene before they had to have it open up in fear of her passing out.
- The Catwoman suit made it impossible for her to hear her own voice and Tim Burton had to tell her to lower her voice as she would often shout her lines.
- Danny Devito spent at least 2 hours every day in the makeup chair for the Penguin and was forbidden to tell anyone how the makeup would eventually look, including his family.
- McDonalds in the US had to cancel a Happy Meal promotion after parents complained about the movies violent and sexual nature.
- Stan Winston told a story of how he and his crew were collecting the mechanical penguins after a day’s shoot and found one of the live penguins snuggled up asleep next to a mechanical one
- Christopher Walken’s character is named after actor Max Schreck who starred in Nosferatu (1922).
- Security on the set while filming was so tight that even Kevin Costner was refused entry to visit the set.
- This was the first Batman movie to use digital effects: The shield on the Batmobile and the remote controlled Batarang.