Originally Posted by The Joker
That doesn't prove a thing. Deciding on what villain they wanted doesn't mean they'd decided what exactly they were going to do with him in the story. Or indeed what the story was going to be. Your own article you posted there proves that when it says Nolan didn't even start looking at Batman Begins plot threads til after Inception. What more proof do you need?
You just acknowledged that they were thinking about Bane just after TDK premiered. How does working with Hardy for the first time on Inception and thinking he'd be perfect for Bane give you the impression they had already decided on the LOS before? Again your own article says Nolan did Inception first, THEN he looked at the plots he'd established in Batman Begins.
Okay, but the problem here is that one line in the article (which is not a direct quote from Nolan) contradicts everything we know about the timeline for the development of this movie. I also disagree that deciding on a villain means they didn't have an idea of the story. Nolan has said numerous times that they knew "the shape" of the story and then sought to find an appropriate villain. That's how they tend to work.
The script was in development before Inception began shooting, that's pretty much a fact. I would honestly be shocked if there were drafts of the script written by Jonah that included Bane, but NOT the LOS, and Nolan only decided to add them after he finished Inception and reflected on things. That seems highly unlikely to me. That would mean they basically started from scratch and then started shooting less than a year later.
Edit: I think what is likely is that Nolan had passed off the general outline that he and Goyer came up with to Jonah, then it was kind of out of sight out of mind until he was done with Inception. This would explain why the article phrased it that way.