SPOILER ALERT — If ye not want to be spoiled, read no further. Click here instead.
It’s the question on everyone’s mind. Maybe you speculated about it with your friends after you went to see The Dark Knight Rises. Maybe you all sat in silence. It is kind of hard to wrap one’s head around. Is Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character like … literally supposed to be Batman’s sidekick Robin? Was it some kind of in-joke? Nolan’s done with Batman, but did he just … did he just set someone else up for a sequel … within the same universe? Most importantly, is Joseph Gordon-Levitt the next Batman?
No. Well, he doesn’t know.
Just in case you’re slow to the room, or you just don’t mind spoilers and didn’t fall for the Rick-Roll up top, in The Dark Knight Rises, Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays beat cop John Blake, who deduces that Bruce Wayne is Batman early in the film (a nod to the third comic book Robin, Tim Drake, who did the exact same thing). Late in the film, he has a pretty snooze-worthy stand-off with the cops (best efforts from JGL notwithstanding) that somehow convinces him that the system is broken and that he doesn’t want to be a cop anymore.
A bit later, after the fallout surrounding Bruce Wayne/Batman’s death/disappearance, he finds out that he has inherited something from Wayne’s amended will, and, at this point, his first legal name is revealed to be “Robin,” like Batman’s comic book side kick (though we are compelled to mention that so far, a total none of the Robins from the comics were actually named Robin). Blah blah blah, Robin John Blake inherits the bat cave. Credits roll.
Now Nolan and Bale have been pretty clear that The Dark Knight Rises is their last Batman movie. Christian Bale famously remarked on the presence of Robin in Nolan’s universe once, saying, “If Robin crops up in one of the new Batman films, I’ll be chaining myself up somewhere and refusing to go to work.”
So okay, the “Robin” gag was kind of an in-joke from Nolan and Bale meaning that they are done with the films. But Robin John Blake inherits the bat cave. What comes next? A Robin spin-off? Lame. Nightwing? Go on…
A Batman Beyond scenario with Bale in a supporting role?
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Levitt admits he has “no idea” if Nolan et al. set him up for future installments or what’s going on with the franchise at all.
“I always choose scripts the same way,” he told THR. “If it’s a great script and a great filmmaker, then I’m interested.”
He also addressed the rumors during an appearance onJimmy Kimmel Live on Tuesday, saying:
“I don’t think [the ending of The Dark Knight Rises] is necessarily a set-up. I think it is the great ending for that trilogy,” he said. “Even if you go back to Batman Begins, he’s talking about how Batman is more than a man, it’s a symbol, and a hero can be anybody and we all have heroes inside of us.”
Until then, this is the best the Internet has come up with so far about a potential Joseph Gordon-Levitt Batman spin-off:
Would you watch a Joseph Gordon-Levitt helmed Batman film?