Thursday, June 10, 2010

Introducing 'Rumors from the crazy guy on the corner': Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the Riddler in Chris Nolan's Batman 3 (AKA - Shadow of the Bat)?

I've wrestled for sometime with how to discuss news in a timely manner when so much of the relevant movie news begins as rumor. I don't like to discuss rumors as if they are factual, but I also like to discuss stuff when it allegedly breaks. So, this will be the start of a new feature: 'News from the crazy guy on the corner'. To put it simply, anything I discuss here should be considered 100% rumor, and any analysis I offer should be taken as a theoretical 'if it turns out to be true' capacity. So if I find myself discussing something like that relatively debunked 'Indiana Jones goes to the Bermuda Triangle' story from a couple of days ago (I liked Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, so I say go for it), or whether or not Joseph Gordon-Levitt is in talks to play the Riddler in Nolan's third Batman picture (makes sense, Nolan likes to poach actors from project to project), please know that I am not assuming that any of this will turn out to be correct.

Anyway, speaking of that last rumor, since I am first-and-foremost a Batman nerd, I thought that one was worth commenting on. Hollywood Life is reporting that Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who will next be seen in Chris Nolan's Inception, may be in very early talks to portray one Edward Nygma in Shadow of the Bat (how can Nolan not call it that when the time comes?), which will be released (as I predicted months and months ago) on July 20th, 2012. It's already been denied on The Wrap, as the screenplay for the third film is not finished yet, but it certainly seems like a plausible choice if Nolan brings Eddie Nigma aboard (yes, his last name is spelled two ways). If you look at the Inception cast, you'll notice that it contains a helping of Batman Begins vets (Michael Caine, Cillian Murphy, Ken Watanabe), so it's obvious he keeps his personal favorites around. Heck, I've long assumed that the lead role in Inception (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) was intended for the late Health Ledger. Gordon-Levitt fits the mold for Nolan's casting in the Batman pictures, somewhat unexpected choices of known and respected actors who aren't out-and-out superstars. Michael Caine as Alfred was the only 'obvious' casting decision in the recent Batman franchise thus far. Sure, some may grumble that Gordon-Levitt cannot play Cobra Commander (in the theoretical sequel to GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra) and The Riddler in two separate franchises at the same time, but double-dipping seems to be all-the-rage these days. And yes, he still looks really young, but that didn't stop Nolan (or Scorsese) from casting perpetually baby-faced DiCaprio as a grizzled, hard-boiled tough-guy. This may be all malarkey, but we'll see...

Scott Mendelson

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