Please be warned- this is for ToM Locust, but I think could be of general interest. Tom Mankiewicz was the first writer to have a crack at a serious big screen Batman back in the early eighties. The script drew heavy influence from the Englehart & Rogers run (Silver St. Cloud, Rupert Thorne), and from the 'Untold Legend of the Batman' miniseries. It did not contain the scene of Thomas Wayne in the batsuit at the charity costume party (more happily, it omits stuff like the Harvey Harris bit). It isn't perfect- the Joker is weakly written, and Robin is awkwardly crammed into the third act- but it reflects the tone of the comics of the time, Gordon is an actual character, and the first third is a real attempt to explain the journey of Bruce Wayne the boy to Batman the man. The structure is similar to the first Superman film (not surprisingly, since Mankiewicz is largely credited with creating what became the final 'Superman' script), and the scenes of Batman on his first night out are more thrilling than any I've read in any Batman script. Now, mind you I didn't want to spoil 'Begins' so I only treated myself to a couple of early scenes- between young Bruce and Thomas. And I thought that the tone was pitch-perfect. I first read about Batman coming to the big screen back in high school. In 1983. Starlog magazine had an article about Mankiewicz writing 'The Batman' (for a summer 1984 release!). It's been a long time, but I think that- despite the rubber suit- Christopher Nolan may have made the movie that I wanted to see when I excitedly read that story all those years ago.