Christopher Nolan is regarded as one of the best filmmakers working in the business and his DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY, consisting of BATMAN BEGINS, THE DARK KNIGHT, and THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, is viewed by many to be the best film representation of the Caped Crusader. The comic book movie has certainly evolved since BATMAN BEGINS was released in 2005 and even more so since 2012’s THE DARK KNIGHT RISES. The Marvel Cinematic Universe brought in a new wave as Nolan’s trilogy was wrapping up and he believes that his films arrived at the perfect moment in time.
In the new book, “Nolan Variations” by Tom Stone, the director speaks on why the timing was right and a lot of it has to do with not having to follow a particular method of making the film:
“It was the right moment in time for the telling of the story I wanted to do. The origin story for Batman had never been addressed in film or fully in the comics. There wasn’t a particular or exact thing we had to follow. There was a gap in movie history. Superman had a very definitive telling with Christopher Reeve and Richard Donner. The version of that with Batman had never been told. We were looking at this telling of an extraordinary figure in an ordinary world.”
Nolan also addresses that he had a lot creative freedom while making the films and he was able to really show the studio what the movies could be in the long run. There was also no pressure to crank each film out right away:
“The other advantage we had was back then you could take more time between sequels. When we did Batman Begins, we didn’t know we’d do one and it took three years to do it and then four years before the next one. We had the luxury of time. It didn’t feel like a machine, an engine of commerce for the studio. As the genre becomes so successful, those pressures become greater and greater. It was the right time.”
I would have to agree with Nolan that time was really on his side when he started THE DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY. There were comic book films in existence but there hadn’t been this solid standard set like we see with the MCU or even some of the DCEU films. It was less of a machine back then because they were still trying to find their way a bit. Could his BATMAN films work now? It’s possible because they are true cinematic achievements but I think they would be accepted in a completely different way if released today.
Do YOU think timing was on Nolan’s side when he embarked on making THE DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY?