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Batman (1983)

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Just finished reading the script for the unproduced Batman movie, written by Tom Mankiewicz . I believe I read it ten years ago or something, thought it was pretty good...and it still is. Some of the things in the script feel similar to what we got in the other Batman movies. Here's some of them:

WARNING!!! SPOILERS! Read the script first.

Batman (1989)

- The "what do you do for a living" line.
- The party at Wayne Manor.
- Batman jumps through a museum skylight.
- Joker angrily destroys his tv because of Batman
- Batmobile scene
- Batman kills
- The scene at the very end

Batman Returns:

- Weird "mutant" Penguin
- Batman is framed

Batman Forever:

- Helicopter scene
- Bruce and Silver visits a circus where the Graysons are murdered.
- Dick blames Batman.

Batman & Robin:

- Museum skylight
- The campy 60's stuff
- Batman makes public appearances

Batman Begins:

- Origin story.
- There's a line where Bruce says that he must become more than just a man.
- Batman says that the people need a symbol, someone to rally around.

The Dark Knight:

- The Joker ruins the party at Wayne Manor
- Love interest is killed

Batman: Mask of the Phantasm:

- Origin story
- Bruce fights a gang of bikers.
- Tragic ending

I actually think it's a bit sad that they didn't make a movie out of it. If they changed a couple of things, it could have been one of the best Batman movies. Here's a few reasons why I love it:

1. The scene where Joe Chill murders Bruce's parents.

The look on Bruce's face freaks Joe Chill out. "Stop lookin' at me like that, kid!" Reminds me of one of the older comics. I have always liked that version.

2. Bruce doesn't travel the world.

Again, this reminds me of the golden age Batman comics. Batman trains his mind and body in his own home, and own country. I don't get it...why travel the world just to learn how to kick ass?

Also, I don't like that Batman is "the master of all martial arts in the world". That's impossible, and almost makes him more superhuman than Superman. One or two forms of martial arts is enough.

3. Batman is more acrobatic in this one.

One of the things I don't like about the other Batman movies is how "stiff" Batman is. In this script, he's running, jumping, balancing, swinging etc. Like the comic book version. That's because...

4. ...the suit is better.

It's the grey and black tights (with yellow oval). It doesn't restrict Batman's movements like the other ones. I hope Batman is wearing something like that in the next movie.

5. Bruce Wayne/Batman.

I like this version of Batman. A cross between Keaton and Clooney. Dark and scary when he needs to be, but not afraid to smile once in a while either. The first scenes with Batman is just him attacking from the shadows. Later, when he starts to cooperate with Gordon (called David Gordon for some reason), he makes public appearances, talks with reporters etc. He's even proclaimed "man of the year" by the mayor. It's a bit Batman & Robin-ish, but I don't mind that Batman is loved by the public. He would fit in nicely in the same universe as Donner's Superman.

Also love the scene where Bruce finds out that the gang of bikers killed the little girls father. It's not about revenge, but protecting innocents.

6. The Batcave.

With the giant coin, dinosaur, trophy room and gym. I don't think we'll ever see the dinosaur in any of the new Batman movies. Too bad...

7. The Batmobile.

It sounds similar to the Burtonmobile, in a way. Except that it's amphibious, and can fly. It's so OTT...

8. Silver St. Cloud.

It's nice to see a woman in a superhero film that isn't:

A. Stupid.
B. Screaming all of the time
C. Acting like a ******.

There are of course some things that should have been changed:

- The Joker tells too many jokes.
- The Penguin is unnecessary.
- Robin is unnecessary.
- Batman kills.
- Rupert Thorne's death is gruesome.
- The sex-stuff is unnecessary.
- Why change Gordon's name?


There's probably more, but I can't remember everything right now...

What do you guys think? Did you love it or hate it?
 
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never knew there was a script for a Batman movie a few years before Burton. is it available to read online?
 
Nah.. Burton films nailed it. I'll take your point on Vicki Vale, though. We didn't need so much screaming. But that's the only nitpick I have about the Burton films.
 
Yeah,I haven't read it in many years,but I remember it was pretty good.Better than the Burton film,IMO.But I've got to read it again to do a review justice.
 
Oh, I didn't know the Mank script was ever available, and I didn't know it was in development in '83! Will read this when I get a chance.
 
it's a really interesting script. It would have been a great movie. I like how most of it is quite serious and kinda dark, and then you have the climax, in a classic Finger/sprang fashion. The ending is quite dark though.

Silver Saint Cloud was a strong love interest, and Rupert Thorn a great villain. It's also really faithful to the comics, and has great character development, the bats/gordon friendship is especially compelling.

Penguin gets the short stick, but has an amazing action scene, and Joker is really funny and scary, but is more of a schemer than a real vilain.

Lots of great stuff.
 
Silver St Cloud is the most overrated love interest ever in Batman.
 
I skimmed over the 83 script funny how Gordon's first name is David instead of James.
 
If this would have been made, who do you guys and girls think would have played Batman.
 
did you read the script or are you talking about Silver in the comics?

I mean the comics. This script version of her character never saw the light of day to become overrated.
 
If this would have been made, who do you guys and girls think would have played Batman.
Turning back the clock to 1983 I can probably see Mel Gibson, Kurt Russell, Jeff Bridges.

Real long shots would have been maybe Dennis Quaid, Nick Note, Sylvester Stallone, Clint Eastwood.

But if they were going the comedy route for nostalgic Batman '66 fans then probably Bill Murray or Chevy Chase.
 
I know I said this before but Baldwin, he would have been 25 at the time perfect age for a year one era batman plus he LOOKS like Bruce out of the suit.
 
I mean the comics. This script version of her character never saw the light of day to become overrated.

still, the script is enough to imagine she would have been a strong love inetrest in the movie, regardless of how she was written in the comics.
 
Turning back the clock to 1983 I can probably see Mel Gibson, Kurt Russell, Jeff Bridges.

Real long shots would have been maybe Dennis Quaid, Nick Note, Sylvester Stallone, Clint Eastwood.

But if they were going the comedy route for nostalgic Batman '66 fans then probably Bill Murray or Chevy Chase.

A young Mel Gibson as Batman? Awesome.
 
I know I said this before but Baldwin, he would have been 25 at the time perfect age for a year one era batman plus he LOOKS like Bruce out of the suit.

I always thought he would've been a great Batman too.
 

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