'The Batman' Screenplay by Tom Mankiewicz

Discussion in 'Batman Begins' started by atomicbattery, Apr 5, 2005.

  1. Van Petrol Guest

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    The part where Bruce chases the biker after mugging a couple with their young daughter and shooting the man, and the first outings as Batman particularly the part on Subway with the thug and the teenage couple I realy liked. It showed more of Batman starting out and help the people (much like the first Batman part in B89) instead of just focusing on the Main Villain straight away.
     
  2. lujho Registered

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    Yeah, I actually miss that from the Begins script - Batman stopping a few small, normal crimes. Maybe something like that has been added suring filming?
     
  3. David Ford, RPD Registered

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    Jon Peters did a re-write?:)

    I would've loved to be in the room when that re-write occured.
     
  4. ultimatefan The Batman must come back

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    He demanded one... for him to actually do it he´d have to have enough brains to type it...
     
  5. David Ford, RPD Registered

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    What I find funny is that Peters isn't able to read. I just though that would damper is a screenwriting session.
     
  6. JTIZZLEVILLE Registered

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    my favorite part of the script...

    not really. but it made me smile when i first read it.
     
  7. The Guard Registered

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    And thats the problem I had with THE BATMAN, too. The complete devolvement of the last act. They go for this serious story, and while serious things do happen, they're kind of glossed over. I mean, Silver St. Cloud dying was handled well. But the fight before, and Batman killing Rupert Thorne with a giant thumbtack right after it happens? Come on. It was clearly campy in places, but then, so were the comics. The whole "giant props" thing didn't exactly go out in the 60's, it was a staple of Batman comics for a long time. Now, I didn't like it. But I still think the script NAILED that aspect of the mythos as they were in the comics. They got the giant dinosaur and penny in the cave, all the little things that made Batman comics so interesting back then.
     
  8. TheVileOne Registered

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    Oh I remember this script. It was pretty bad. I think Sam Hamm's script was a big improvement.

    I think Goyer handled the origin stuff a lot better in Begins.

    Needless to say guys, you should be happy with the movie we got in 1989 and not the one this script suggested.
     
  9. Two-Face Harvey Dent

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    Why was Batman was keeping giant Two-Face coin in the Batcave? I thought that was way over "campy" top.
     
  10. DACrowe Registered

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    Look I don't care if it didn't have TDKR or Year ONe, or The Longest Halloween, or The Killing Joke to pull from, it still had freaking Danny O'Neal to draw from and Adams and not to mention Kane and Finger in the very early days.

    And yes, several scenes were handled very well, but I think that Batman Begins handles the origin, the parents (especially Thomas Wayne), Alfred, and the training much better. I say they're the saem about the first night out, but the warehouse scene in the BB script (which we get the ever shortest glimpse of in the trailer) is just well more frightening and works better.

    What do you mean you liked the handling of the origin? It was all comedic, Batman's parents are dead and it felt like a cross between a child's dream comedy (rich enough to do whatever he wants and his techers having to keep up with him, literally) and a bad Rocky training scene (gag...ring bars) and not to mention that Bruce Wayne talked like he was from Pleasentville in it, for hte most part, and he made damn robots and holographic imagery at the age of 8! 8! And his parents being killed for political gain and pre-planned and orchestrated by the Joker is far worse than anything Burton did to the origin of Batman and Joker in '89.

    And Joker is a "comedian" of sorts, but very ccreepy. You know like in the comics, like in B'89, like in the O'Neal comics, like in B:TAS,, while the Joker did kill about 5 people in The Batman script, he came off as well...Gene Hackman in Superman. All camp and cheese, Hackman killed one person in STM and tried to kill millions more, but no one took him seriously, and it would have been taht way for the Joker but worse, he would put out bad one-liners like he was doing stand-up for 7 year olds. It reeks of Otis.

    And let's not forget that the PEnguin WAS window dressing. He was presented in a boring manner tacked on in the third act just as much as was Robin in the script. H ehad no personality and was there because people could go "Hey there is the Burgess Meredith character from the old TV show!" Ugh! Scarecrow will be very memorable for his small screentime and very affective and creepy in BB which is more than I could say of that adaptation of The Penguin.

    And Batman going to charity functions was very much in the same root of the '60s TV show and later B&R.

    In fact the only thing I felt it did superior was the romance, which BR topped, but B'89 and BF didn't. BB will more than likely top it, because for the first time this will seem like Bruce Wayne in love which is the hope and promise of it (like Catwoman) but the ultimate crushing ofi t at the end and he he is silent for a moment and then puts it in a "lockbox" (which is very unhealthy for the psychosis but who cares this a movie about a grown man dressed as a bat) and then moves on. Very well done.




    And I am much happier wit hSam Hamm's treatment than that. Which was made as a companion piece to STM and it sure felt it, as the inferior version. At least with B'89, if not a BB, Burton and Hamm amde Batman his own and just as dynamic as Superman but in a completely different story structure and development pacing and overall tone and film. They broke the chain of Adam West, Schumaucher chained us back, and Nolan is hopefully not only going to break that chain but go somewhere where neither director before went...to the comic books.
     
  11. The Guard Registered

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    He did draw from all those sources.

    In comparison to what we know about Post-Crisis, yes. THE BATMAN is more of a Pre-Crisis tale.

    Yes. But the point is, THE BATMAN still nailed the first night out. There's not "one version" of that tale. THE BATMAN got the "wants to help people" aspect right. BATMAN BEGINS and BATMAN got the "taking down organized crime" aspect of it right. I'm not comparing BATMAN BEGINS and THE BATMAN. I'm saying THE BATMAN got things right.

     
  12. TheVileOne Registered

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    I still don't think that script would've worked as a movie. It was way too bloated. And Batman had so much sex in it, almost like, they were trying to hold up a sign or something saying, "HE'S NOT GAY! REALLY!"
     
  13. Maxwell Smart Registered

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    I'd love to see what a certain someone could do with a re-write of the third act. Wink wink..
     
  14. newwaveboy87 automatic systematic

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    the scripts first 2/3 is greatness....but like what's been said before the final act was forced and awkward

    everything was, fairly, serious and dark and then we get to a part where Joker kidnaps them and holds them hostage on a giant typewriter....LAME

    but i did think it was interesting that Joker was responsible for the creation of Robin in the script. it's pretty damn good, and with a couple of rewrites and changes it could've been something really great
     
  15. The Guard Registered

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    Way too bloated? Come on now. BATMAN BEGINS will have Ducard, Ra's Al Ghul, The Scarecrow, Carmine Falcone being taken down, the entire origin sequence with Lucious Fox, and in addition, will feature a car chase, action at Arkham and a final plot against Gotham, and several encounters with Ra's Al Ghul. It has a romantic/friendship subplot and a subplot about Earle and Bruce having to reclaim Wayne Enterprises. As THE BATMAN is set up, THE BATMAN works fine, because it's basically a series of escalating events in Gotham City, not a single master plan by a villain.

    I think there were three scenes that implied he slept with women. These occur at key moments in his life, and the last one before Silver helps him realize that for all his talents, he's still not doing what he set out to do.
    He was supposed to be showing his playboy side, what with the buying of cars and sleeping with hot women and all. They were showing him as one. It was also apparently part of his dark side, and his intense nature coming out, and part of how he released his energy. So he liked women. So what? That's just like the comics, back when Batman used to have a heart and long for love as much as the next man.

    Akiva Goldsman?

    Someone said something about The Joker being too silly. The way Joker is portrayed in THE BATMAN is exactly like he was in the comics, a cold-blooded killer whose jokes are only funny to him. He's a big deal in Gotham here, he's pretty much a mob boss. He does his "Joker crimes" to amuse himself and terrorize Gotham, which includes using Kops, utiliziing disguises for himself, and an appearance at the opera, all things he's done in the comics before. And as far as him not being a threat, hardly. The Joker kills a news vendor with an exploding cigar early in the script, he kills Joe Chill later on, leaving him dead with a ghoulish grin, he kills The Mayor of Gotham with another kind of smile toxin, and it's hinted that something else happens at the opera, and more people are in danger or die. Sam Hamm's killed more people. BUt for 1983, this version of The Joker nailed his methods of operation, and his character.

    The Silver St. Cloud romance/love triangle/quartet story is done much better than love interests in the previous franchise were done, or movies in general. Silver in this script is smarter, sexier, and more determined than most love interests I've seen in THE BATMAN. She's just all around cool, and a great character with plenty of depth for a love interest, who has a real impact on Bruce Wayne. She actively seeks out what's wrong with Bruce, and why, and tries to be a friend/lover to him, even after she knows he may be Batman. They talk more than any previous love interests have, and the discussions they have do have a lot of meaning. It's fantastic. You see them level with each other, and be honest with each other, and you see real emotion on Bruce's part.

    As far as The Penguin goes, they nailed him. He's everything he ever was in the comics: A gimmicky crook who tries to be more than he is and gets foiled more often than not. THE BATMAN showcases his odd nature, his opulant, excessive lifestyle, he talks like The Penguin always has, and he has his gimmicks (birds, umbrellas, etc) and thugs to do his bidding. He and The Joker work well together in their scenes.

    Dick Grayson becoming Robin is thrown in, but it's very well done, and never feels fake. There's real emotion to Bruce and Dick's encounter and in how much Bruce cares about Dick and his situation, and a lot of intensity in the death of the Graysons and Bruce and Dick's reactions to this. The duality that both of them share is explored, and there's a good conflict for Dick to overcome before he becomes Robin. His entrance is classic Robin, too.

    Councilman Rupert Thorne is also portrayed well. He's a great political character. He's used his connections with The Joker to more or less own Gotham, and is a cold hearted son of a ***** who did what he had to do to reach the top and continues to do so. He even sacrifices the woman he wants (Silver) as bait for The Joker to nail The Batman, and is responsible for her death when he tries to kill Bruce/Batman.

    Also, despite this script having a bit of camp, we get to see the effects that becoming The Batman has on Bruce Wayne. We see him get injured and healing. We see him struggling to come to grips with his crusade and facing depression because of it. We see how much he cares for the innocents of Gotham. We see how his relationship with Alfred is strained.

    Anyway, something interesting I've found over the years after reading this scrpt, aside from obvious influences it had on BATMAN...THE BATMAN seems to have influenced or preceded some things. Example: This, I believe, was in SPIDER-MAN

    EXT. FLAMING BUILDING - NIGHT

    A TOWERING INFERNO engulfs a building in a poor section of town.
    Flames shoot out of the upper floors as a DISTRAUGHT MOTHER pleads with
    the FIREMEN.

    MOTHER
    But my baby! My baby's still in
    there!

    FIRE CAPTAIN
    It's impossible, lady! I can't send
    My men into that tinderbox!

    FIREMAN
    (staring up in awe)
    Look!!

    ANGLE ON BATMAN - THEIR P.O.V.

    The Batman lands on top of the burning building! Hooking his nylon
    cord securely, he shields his face with his cape, then launches himself
    downwards, swinging straight through a window in a SHOWER OF GLASS AND
    FLAMES!

    After an agonizing moment - he reappears! He cradles a BAWLING BABY in
    his arms, covers it with his cape, then quickly shimmies down into the
    street.


    And for those of you who read the BATMAN BEGINS script...

    ANGLE ON BRUCE

    Looking up. Staring across the room:

    The remaining laser beam has eaten away a piece of the basement wall -
    there is a dull ECHOING THUD as the plaster hits the bottom of some
    unseen cavernous space below.

    BACK TO BRUCE

    Rising. Crossing curiously to the hole in the wall. Training his
    flashlight torch through it.

    ANGLE DOWN HOLE - HIS P.O.V.

    AN IMMENSE CAVERN trails down and away into the blackness. A network
    of aged timbers intersect themselves, shoring up the side of the
    foundation.

    BACK TO BRUCE

    Staring. Playing his flashlight against the visible parts of the
    underground cavity. He picks up a beaker from the lab table, then lets
    it fall through the hole. There is an interminable wait. Finally -
    the impact of SHATTERING GLASS.

    ANGLE BACK THROUGH HOLE

    Seen from inside: the torch beam shines. Suddenly - a long length of
    rope is tossed through. Bruce appears in the opening. He wriggles
    through, hanging on to the rope.

    Bruce expertly shimmies down the rope, a man completely at home in an
    action he knows well. The beam from the torch dances across the walls
    of the cavern: high-ribbed, jagged walls, suggesting some sort of
    labyrinth beyond. The rope has played out. Bruce hangs by the end,
    looks down, lets himself fall to the cavern floor below.

    He rises, plays the torch against the sides of the cave.

    ANGLE ON BEAM - HIS P.O.V.

    The beam searches into crannies, exploring dark gray walls. It comes
    across a large patch of solid black.

    BACK TO BRUCE

    Looking curiously.

    BACK TO BLACK PATCH

    As the beam hits the black patch fully - dozens of yellow eyes appear.
    The entire mass LAUNCHES ITSELF INTO CAMERA with a terrifying screech
    and the sound of beating wings.

    BACK TO BRUCE

    His jaw drops, stunned, as THE COLONY OF BATS swarm over him! He
    stumbles, protecting his face. The torch drops to the floor. Its
    shaft of light dances crazily around the cavern.

    From O.S. - a low moan is heard from Bruce. It rises, gathers in
    volume and intensity, gradually becoming a deep, booming guttural roar
    - at once a scream of total pain and a cry of defiance. The terrified
    bats scream back in a maze of hot and cold light bouncing off beating
    black wings.

    INT. ALFRED'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

    The wind and rain batter against Alfred's partially open bedroom
    window. Mixed with the sounds - a strong echo of the roar from the
    cavern. Alfred's eyes pop open. He rises groggily, makes his way to
    the window, closes it. CAMERA HOLDS on window, PANS UP to the moon.

    DISSOLVE THROUGH TO:

    EXT. CEMETERY - CLOSE ON MOON - NIGHT

    A FLASHING LIGHTNING BOLT: CAMERA PANS DOWN from the moon through the
    raging storm to the graves of Thomas and Martha Wayne in the country
    cemetery, high on the hill.

    Kneeling between them is Bruce - fists clenched, head bowed, tiny
    rivulets of water running off his face and body - totally lost in
    silent prayer.

    BRUCE'S VOICE
    I've worked hard to make you proud of
    me. To become the kind of person
    whose presence could make a difference
    in the world. But one man can only do
    only so much, Father. Mother, to-
    night I saw the sign I thought would
    never come. Now - for the first time
    I realize I must...be...more...than
    a man.


    And for those of you who like Goyer's take on The Batmobile.

    EXT. STREET - NIGHT

    The Batmobile is about to become a sandwich as Batman suddenly squeals
    the vehicle into a parking building! The Hood Cars do respective 180's
    and follow suit.

    INT. PARKING BUILDING - NIGHT

    The Batmobile roars around hairpin turns, ascending the levels of the
    parking building like a sportscar.

    The Hood Cars screech after him, gaining speed. They pursue Batman
    higher and higher, threading the narrow openings through the lines of
    parked cars, tearing off side mirrors, doors, and fenders on their way
    by.

    ANGLE ON HIGHER LEVEL

    The Batmobile, reaching the level just under the roof, squeals around a
    corner, catches the fender of a parked car, and spins out of control!

    Batman slams on the brakes as the Batmobile skids and turns to face:

    The two Hood Cars, which have stopped so that they are completely
    blocking off the exit ramps, up and down. The OCCUPANTS stare in
    amazement as the Batmobile suddenly roars at them!

    INT. BATMOBILE - NIGHT

    Batman's jaw sets as he looks forward.

    ANGLE THROUGH WINDSHIELD

    A sign at the bottom of a narrow ramp leading to the roof screams in
    red letters: WRONG WAY - DO NOT ENTER - SEVERE TIRE DAMAGE!

    BACK TO PARKING LEVEL

    The Batmobile shoots up the wrong-way ramp!

    CLOSE OF METAL TEETH

    As the Batmobile's tires make contact with the viciously protruding
    metal teeth - ALL FOUR TIRES BLOW! The vehicle roars on, flub-a-
    dubbing up toward the roof.

    EXT. ROOF - NIGHT

    The Batmobile exits onto the roof as the two Hood Cars, appearing from
    the proper ramp, fan out to flank it.

    ANGLE ON PENGUIN IN AIR

    The Penguin takes up a position in mid-air just above and past the
    roof, "clucking" with glee as he sees the Batman is hopelessly trapped.

    BACK TO ROOF

    The two Hood Cars close in on the Batmobile from either side. Batman
    is running out of room.

    INT. BATMOBILE - NIGHT

    Silver looks through the windshield in despair!

    ANGLE THROUGH WINDSHIELD

    The edge of the roof looms up rapidly!

    SILVER'S VOICE
    Oh, my God!

    She looks over at Batman whose JAW SUDDENLY TWITCHES!

    EXTREME CLOSE ON SILVER

    She has seen his jaw twitch! She stares in disbelief, realizing the
    implications.

    SILVER
    (whisper)
    Oh, my God...

    BATMAN
    Hang on!

    Batman presses a RED BUTTON!

    EXTREME CLOSE ON EXHAUST

    The Batmobile's twin turbine engines EXPLODE WITH A WHITE FLAME! Jet-
    propelled afterburners ignite!

    WIDER ANGLE

    The Batmobile has reached the edge of the roof, now LAUNCHES ITSELF
    into space in an upwards arc!
     
  16. TheVileOne Registered

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    Begins does do all that. I read the first draft, and it wasn't perfect. It had potential, but I still think it needed a lot of polishing. However, I think with all those elements you mentioned in mind, it managed to keep great focus on Batman, and I think that's the important thing.

    The Batman script just came off as somewhat more convoluted to me, there was just way too much going on and it just didn't seem to fit together, where as in the draft I read for Batman Begins...things seem to mesh quite well IMHO...for the most part :) .

    I just thought the scene in the car after his graduation was just...a little too indulgent for my tastes. I just think its better when you know, you want Batman to get laid...but he doesn't. And I didn't really get that whole dark side and nature coming out of him in the bedroom. If anything it comes out of him being Batman.

    Though I will say, there are moments in Goyer's first draft that kind of reminded me of this script.
     
  17. The Batman The Dark Knight

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    parts of the batman script are better than begins, imo.

    Mank supposedly did a rewrite after this as well...
     
  18. DACrowe Registered

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    I will not argue it completely, but I will say that The Batman had great moments but was ultimately mediocre, Batman was not, and I hope Batman Begins will not be either now.
     
  19. The Guard Registered

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    I don't know, I think it was fantastic. Mediocre implies it had nothing really touching or exceptional about it. That's just not the case. It was easily on par with what we saw from SUPERMAN or even BATMAN, given the source material it was working from.
     
  20. Maxwell Smart Registered

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    I agree. Honestly, even in the post-DKR world I think with some modifications it still could have made a good film.
     
  21. DACrowe Registered

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    I do miss that giant type-writer in BB now. ;) :p
     
  22. Maxwell Smart Registered

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    Um, notice that the word modifications is in there, chief.
     
  23. ron bond 007 Registered

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    I would have loved to seen this made into a movie back in 1984 better than what Tim Burton or Joel Schumacher would have done. Though I prefer Schumacher's Batman films. I heard it was going to be epic like the Superman films. What I really liked about it was Robin was going to appear at the end in full costume and would have set the stage for sequels. I really like Robin. I have always thought Batman was fun with Robin when I used to watch the Batman cartoons when I was a kid. And of course the Joker was in it too. However I don't seem to recall a Batmobile or Batplane being in this version but I heard it was going to be like the Batman comics of the 70's/80's and was going to feature Bruce's girlfriend Siver St.Cloud.

    I also heard it was going to be a two-picture series similar to Superman I & II. Batman and Robin would have been a team throughout the sequel.

    :wow: :word:
     
  24. El Payaso Registered

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    :woot:
     
  25. AndrewGilkison Registered

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    I heard Mank did a rewrite on this script, and that that draft was much better than this one.
     

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