The Batman debuted a brand new trailer at DC FanDome on Saturday, showing off the best look yet at Robert Pattinson’s take on the Dark Knight and promising an even darker, grittier version of Gotham’s Caped Crusader than any that have hit film before.
Set just a few years in Batman’s career as a superhero, The Batman promises to show not just a look at the early days of Batman but numerous other proto-villains and allies, including Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Jeffrey Wright as James Gordon, Andy Serkis as Alfred, and Colin Farrell as The Penguin.
The new trailer also gives the first real look at Paul Dano’s take on the iconic Batman villain the Riddler, who appears to be going for a far creepier, serial killer-esque style version of the character (as opposed to the campier, trickster that most Riddler adaptations hew towards). “What’s black and blue and dead all over?” we hear him ask. An opening shot in the trailer shows a man we see only from behind sitting at a diner counter drinking a cup of coffee when the cops arrive. He puts his hands up, they slam him on the counter to cuff him and as he’s taken away, we see the unmistakable sign of the Riddler in the foam of the latte he leaves behind: a question mark.
This latest trailer gives a much different vibe than previous iterations of the Batman saga; it balances light and dark in a way that gives it almost a film noir effect. We don’t learn a lot more about the characters, but we definitely get the sense that this younger Batman hasn’t quite identified as a hero just yet. Take the way he describes the Bat Signal: “Fear is a tool. When that light hits the sky, it’s not just a call. It’s a warning.”
Pattinson and Kravitz were joined by director Matt Reeves in a panel discussion before the trailer dropped. Pattinson said this version of the Caped Crusader “really knows what he’s doing when he puts on the cowl. He’s a bit out of control. He hasn’t really defined what Batman is ... he’s becoming this sort of odd creature.”
The original trailer for the film — released over a year ago at 2020’s DC FanDome event — offered only a mere glimpse of the movie, based on the small amount of footage that Reeves was able to film before COVID-19 caused production to shut down in March 2020. Filming was also forced to pause again in September that year, just a few days after production had started up again when Pattinson tested positive for COVID.
It’s been a long road to theaters for The Batman; the film was originally intended to hit theaters on June 21st but was pushed first to October 1st. It’s now slated to open in theaters on March 4th, 2022.