Michael Keaton

Batman the Animated Series

Enduring cultural figures like Batman endure precisely because of the slight but notable changes they incur over time. Batman has had a long history in the moving image, and while the character has maintained both the central conceit of being a crime-fighting detective, the cinematic Batman of seventy years ago bears little resemblance to the Batman we’re familiar with today. The character and his myth have been interpreted with variation by a multitude of creative persons other than Bob Kane and Bill Finger. In the moving image, Batman has been embodied by a range of actors including Robert Lowery, Adam West, and George Clooney, and Batman has been realized by directors and showrunners prone to various tastes and aesthetic interpretations like William Dozier and Christopher Nolan. While Batman is perhaps best-known by a non-comic-astute mass culture through the many blockbuster feature films made about him, including this summer’s hotly anticipated The Dark Knight Rises, the character’s cinematic origins are rooted in the long-dead format of the movie serial. Batman first leapt off the page in a 15-part serial made in 1943 titled Batman and another six years later titled Batman and Robin. These serials did not influence Batman’s later cinematic iterations realized by Tim Burton and Joel Schumacher as much as they inspired Batman’s representation on television. Batman’s presence in film serials and on television have had a decisive and important impact in terms of how mass audiences perceive the Batman of feature films. At the same time, these serials […]

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Seth Grahame-Smith‘s unwritten Beetlejuice sequel is currently a big, fat maybe. As of right now, Smith has only gone as far to discuss the project with the studio, Tim Burton, and Michael Keaton, who all sound game, as long as one small little detail is taken care of: nailing the script. As I spoke to Smith yesterday, it was obvious he knew the stakes involved in doing a sequel to Burton’s beloved classic. I mean, who on earth wants to be the guy responsible for making a lame Beetlejuice sequel? Obviously, Smith doesn’t want that title. “When Warner Bros. first talked to me about it I said there needs to be two things to happen before I would even consider it,” said Grahame-Smith. “For one, it couldn’t be some kind of reboot or remake with a different actor playing Beetlejuice. I wasn’t interested in that. I wanted actual Michael Keaton as Beetlejuice and an actual sequel to the movie. Two, I said I’d only do it if Tim gave it his blessing and guided the process. I got both of those things: Tim to say if there was a good enough script he would help with the development of it and I got Michael Keaton to say, if the script was good enough, he’d be open to doing it.” He continued, “You know, what I keep telling people is I don’t want to do it unless we’re really sure that it’s worthy. The original is one of my favorite movies, so I […]

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Batman 1989

Tim Burton’s Batman wasn’t a movie, it was an event. It spawned a tidal wave of merchandise, video games, roller coasters, an animated series, a ridiculous music video, etc… He dropped that movie on the world like a bomb, and in many ways it could be considered the high point of his career. His artistic approach was finally paired with mainstream material, and his success there has propelled him to being one of the go-to money making directors in Hollywood. But, as an 8-year-old fan that was blown away by the gritty comic book take on the character that was developing throughout the 80s, the release of Batman is forever marked by me as a day of huge disappointment. I hated that boring, goofy movie. It was lamer than that show from the 60s I watched back when I was 6. Pathetic. Batman: Under the Red Hood was a straight to video cartoon that kind of gets lost in the sea of DC straight to video cartoons. Most of these movie are pretty strong, don’t get me wrong, but they’re strong with the caveat that they’re just cartoons. They’re for kids, but they’re good enough to be enjoyed by adults, not good on the level of the best feature films. Under the Red Hood is a step above the rest though. Other than The Dark Knight, I would say that it’s my favorite Batman thing that doesn’t come from the medium of the page.

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When it was first reported that David Katzenberg and Seth Grahame-Smith were going to begin their producing partnership by working on a sequel to the Tim Burton film Beetlejuice, it didn’t really sound like a good idea to me. At first glance it seems like Beetlejuice is a very specifically Tim Burton movie, and the idea of somebody else working in that universe feels strange and off-putting. Why would you even want to make another Beetlejuice unless you were Tim Burton?  That would be like somebody who wasn’t Quentin Tarantino saying they were going to make a sequel to Pulp Fiction. But when Grahame-Smith said that he would only do the movie if he got Burton’s blessing and if Michael Keaton came back to star as the titular ghost with the most, the idea started to sound less crazy. I mean, seeing somebody else working in this world that is so visually Burton’s vision would still be a little weird, but who wouldn’t be interested at the possibility of Keaton slipping back into one of his most outlandish and iconic roles? I’ve found my skepticism about a Beetlejuice sequel waning over time. And that continues now that there’s some confirmation that Burton is, in fact, going to be involved with this movie in some way. While talking to the people at MTV about his current projects Dark Shadows and Frankenweenie, Burton took a minute to address his own feelings about the developing sequel. On doing another Beetlejuice he said, “I […]

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beetlejuice

After it was announced that David Katzenberg and Seth Grahame-Smith were forming a production company whose first order of business was to develop a sequel to the Tim Burton comedy Beetlejuice, the biggest question on everybody’s mind was whether they would be casting a newer, younger actor in the title role and treating this film as something of a reboot, or if they would be getting Michael Keaton to once again don the zombie makeup and green hair of the iconic ghost with the most. As it turns out, Katzenberg and Grahame-Smith are very wise men who understand that Michael Keaton, quite frankly, is Beetlejuice. It didn’t even feel right when somebody else voiced him for the animated series and I was 8 when I watched that.

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Michelle Monaghan

Lionsgate is currently shopping a project around the Toronto International Film Festival that is notable for two big reasons, the awesome and sometimes underappreciated duo that they have attached to star. Penthouse North will see Michelle Monaghan playing a haunted photojournalist who is running from a past tragedy by holing herself up in a posh New York penthouse, with Michael Keaton playing a criminal who seeks a hidden fortune that he believes is somewhere in said penthouse. The two will then presumably engage in some sort of cat and mouse shenanigans that eventually see Monaghan’s character having to muster up the resolve to get past her trauma and survive the incident. The film is set to be directed by Joseph Ruben, who hasn’t done much lately, but who made a string of pretty sweet late night cable catches in the mid-’90s, films like Sleeping With the Enemy, The Good Son, and Money Train. And it’s being made from a script penned by Obsessed and Lakeview Terrace writer David Loughery. His movies aren’t guilty pleasures of mine, so I won’t say anything about them. Let’s just focus on the good; Michael Keaton is always amazing to watch, Michelle Monaghan is always a rock. It’s nice to see these two get a chance at starring roles. [THR]

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gandalf-3d

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s the movie blogosphere’s diversity action plan. Because too many movie blogs just regurgitate press releases, post POV videos of street luge or bring you the same 25 stories that everyone else already has. We take those 25 stories, smash them together, wipe away the blood and mix ‘em with the best links we can find in a nightly tradition known to its friends as Movie News After Dark… For those Hobbit fans who aren’t completely sold on Peter Jackson doing the thing in 3D, see the above picture. If Gandalf approves, how can the world disagree?

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bale-batman

This is non-news, dear reader. You know it and I know it. The only people who don’t seem to know it are the other 99% of movie bloggers in the world who are treating this as if it doesn’t serve as some logical conclusion. Christopher Nolan has made it no secret that The Dark Knight Rises will be his last Batman film, a likely perfect bookend to a trilogy that has set a new standard in the world of comic adaptations. There’s no reason why his star, Christian Bale won’t retire from the franchise, as well. That said, I really wanted to write that title.

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Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar have released a brand new clip today from Toy Story 3, in which we first meet the well-dressed toy known as Ken. You know, Barbie’s old flame…

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Kevin Carr breaks down the week’s releases, looking at Inglourious Basterds, Shorts, and Post Grad.

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Kevin welcomes Neil back to the Magical Studio in the Sky from his emergency “gender re-clarification” surgery in the Netherlands. Neil celebrates his return by not seeing any movies, even though he wanted to see Inglourious Basterds.

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Somehow Mr. Mom and Batman will be playing the voice of the Ken Doll for the upcoming Pixar project. How will the actor cope with not having any junk?

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Josh Radde gets thrown for a loop by some wayward inter-office correspondence, then quickly realizes that Michael Keaton and Diane Keaton are not the same person. The point is, one of the two are starring in a new movie with Jeff Goldblum and Harrison Ford.

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Everyone knows that the Ken doll is Barbie’s secret love slave (ok, maybe not so secret) and this fact will be committed to celluloid in Pixar’s 2010 release of Toy Story 3, where the pair – brace yourselves – “embrace”.

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Robert Fure takes a look at all of the actors who have donned the cape and cowl in cinematic history. Who will emerge as the greatest of all-time? Find out here.

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Assembled by the fine folks over at Black20’s Trailer Park, this is one of those cool little offbeat pieces of the Batman universe that you won’t want to have missed.

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You can ask any close friend of mine what I would do if I became filthy rich, and it is always the same answer. I would change my name to Bruce Wayne, and I’d buy Tim Burton and Michael Keaton’s Batmobile.

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Michael Keaton may not get great praise for his directorial debut, but he has certainly shown that he has serious potential.

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published: 01.29.2015
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published: 01.28.2015
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published: 01.28.2015
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published: 01.28.2015
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