With “The Dark Knight Rises” set to debut on July 20, this will be the 3rd -and final- time Christian Bale has donned the Batman costume on the big screen. It’s hard to imagine he almost gave up the chance to be the Dark Knight entirely.
Bale had a moment where he thought Christopher Nolan had made a mistake by casting him during the very first dress rehearsal in which he wore Val Kilmer’s Batman costume (from Batman Forever), according to what Bale told Access Hollywood:
“I felt like they should recast. I really did because it was so claustrophobic that I didn’t feel like I could breathe. I felt they’ve made a mistake and I can’t do this.”
Bale also told the Examiner the thoughts that rushed through his head during this first experience as the fully dressed caped crusader:
“I thought, ‘oh, Chris (Nolan) has to recast,’ because the claustrophobia was just unbelievable.”
The actor took some time and breathed deeply and asked to be left alone for 15, 20 minutes and just sat with it and eventually got used to it.
“I asked for 20 minutes by myself… and I stood there and thought, ‘I’d really like to make this movie.’ I have to get through this moment.”
He came out of the room with his second wind and asked director Nolan if they could do it calmly and quietly, to which the filmmaker agreed. The suit also was modified so it would be comfortable for the actor to wear.
“That panic aspect was lost because I was able to rip it off myself if I ever did start seeing stars and couldn’t breathe.”
Will you be in theaters when Christian Bale becomes Batman for the last time when “The Dark Knight Rises” premieres July 20th?