There was a lot of talk on Twitter in the last couple of days about the casting news from the new Chris Nolan Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises. In case you missed it, the news was the casting of Anne Hathaway and Tom Hardy as Selina Kyle and Bane. Maybe it’s just the people I follow on Twitter, but the vast majority of the reaction was, perhaps understandably, aimed at Anne Hathaway’s casting, and how she wasn’t suited to the role.
I have a bit of a problem with this. Firstly, because we know nothing specific about the role she’ll be playing; yes, Selina Kyle was Catwoman, but Chris Nolan’s Batman has always tried to ground things in reality much more than earlier interpretations, and it’s presumptuous to assume it’ll be the Catwoman we’ve seen in previous films. Also, the press release doesn’t mention Catwoman at any point, though that was probably just to get people speculating online.
I’m pretty sure Brokeback Mountain is the only film I’ve seen that Anne Hathaway appears in, so I can’t really comment on her ability as an actress, but I’m not at all concerned- I vaguely remember there being some disappointed reactions to Heath Ledger’s casting as Joker in The Dark Knight and he ended up receiving an Oscar. Chris Nolan’s record speaks for itself really, so I’m confident he’ll make the right decisions regarding casting; I don’t particularly like Katie Holmes, but given Maggie Gyllenhaal’s performance in The Dark Knight, I think he made exactly the right choice the first time.
The news of Tom Hardy being cast as Bane was somewhat overshadowed by Anne Hathaway’s casting, but I think it’s another smart choice; I’ve not seen Inception yet (I know, I know), but he seemed very capable in RocknRolla. I am much more excited about the possibilities of Chris Nolan’s vision of Bane though. I’m not overly-familiar with all things Batman, but Bane was a great addition to Arkham Asylum, the game released after Dark Knight, and I think it’s exactly the sort of villain that would exist in this particular Gotham City.
Basically, regardless of casting, Chris Nolan is still in charge, and that’s a Good Thing™. He has a habit of making very good films and I don’t think it’s about to change, so let’s stop moaning for a little while and let him prove you completely wrong, unless you think it was good casting. Clever you. Incidentally, I spelt Maggie Gyllenhaal’s name right first time. Easy.