‘The Batman’: 8 things you might have missed

8 Easter eggs to clock in DC’s new superhero epic

1. Kurt Cobain was a major inspiration for the movie

Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures/© DC Comics

Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne is a lot more grungy than previous iterations, with his emo eye make-up, floppy fringe and sulky demeanour. Matt Reeves said the touchstone for Wayne was the late Nirvana frontman, Kurt Cobain.

2. The opening is influenced by Alfred Hitchcock

Photo: Universal Pictures

The Batman opens with a very creepy point-of-view shot of someone spying on Gotham’s mayor and his family in their house. It turns out the voyeur is the Riddler/Edward Nashton.

The shot, says Reeves, was a nod to Alfred Hitchcock. The scene strongly echoes shots from Hitchcock’s Rear Window, in which a housebound James Stewart watches his neighbours through binoculars and accidentally stumbles on a murder.

3. Stephen King helped make the Batmobile

Photo: Columbia Pictures

Okay, one of King’s works inspired the new Batmobile. In an interview with Empire, Reeves said that when considering how to depict the new iteration of Batman’s car, he thought of Stephen King’s Christine, a novel, and 1983 film, about a possessed car.

4. Gotham is actually mostly British

Photo: Jake Davis

Although Gotham City is inspired by New York City, a lot of The Batman was shot in the UK.

The Batman’s production designer James Chinlund told The Radio Times the UK, especially the North, had the imposing architecture – and rain – Gotham needed.

‘All this beautiful ornament and incredible pieces of architecture with this heavy dark patina,’ he says, ‘and then obviously, the weather of the North all combined to create this amazing atmosphere for us.

5. The Batcave is based on secret New York railways

Photo: Warner Bros

While the new Batcave was created at Leavesden Studios, its inspiration came from beneath the streets of New York.

Reeves told Esquire that in trying to create a unique new Batcave he looked at the history of secret Manhattan railways.

Historically, Manhattan had a number of secret stations, including one beneath the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, only for the use of super-wealthy customers.

6. Catwoman is bisexual

Photo: Warner Bros

Comic book movies have a pretty poor record when it comes to including LGBTQ+ characters.

Remember Marvel wanting credit for its ‘first openly gay character’ in Avengers: Endgame, who turned out to be nobody important in a support group scene? A gay character was eventually included in a leading role with Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) in Eternals.

7. The Riddler’s unmasking mimics a classic painting

Photo: Warner Bros.

Nighthawks by Edward Hopper is one of the most recognisable paintings ever produced and a frequent inspiration for movie directors.

It depicts a 1940s diner seen from outside, late at night, with three customers sitting at the bar.

It looks lonely and slightly sinister.

8. There’s a famous actor behind that mystery character

Photo: Warner Bros

Absolutely stop here if you haven’t yet seen the movie.

In the final minutes of the film, the Riddler is seen talking to a shadowy character.

He’s credited as ‘Unseen Arkham Prisoner’, there’s no questioning the fact it’s the Joker.

What’s less obvious is that beneath the prosthetics is the brilliant actor Barry Keoghan.

Keoghan has been fantastic in films ranging from Dunkirk to The Killing Of A Sacred Deer to American Animals, but his biggest role was probably in 2021’s Eternals.

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