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We Have Done the Impossible and That Makes Us Mighty

George Clooney Discusses Batman and Robin in Public

No imperiled baby animals this week, but let’s talk about Batman. Not Christian Bale, not even Michael Keaton. And not even Val Kilmer. George Clooney. Many of us have chosen to have our minds wiped of Clooney’s turn as the Dark Knight in Joel Schumacher‘s second Batman movie, Batman and Robin. If you can remember any of it, it probably causes you a strange kind of pain or frustration. And I think it’s fair to say that fallen star George Clooney never saw his career recover … oh, wait, except for that amazing career he has led ever since donning the famous nipples — BATSUIT. Batsuit. And now, he’s admitting a few things about Batman and Robin, and it includes some swear words.

For one thing, in the late 1990s, when George Clooney was still playing the dreamy Dr. Doug Ross on NBC‘s ER and barely had a handful of movies under his belt, was turning down an iconic franchise really an option? In an interview with TotalFilm, he admits that this was kind of a big deal.

“The truth is, my phone rang, and the head of Warner Bros. said, ‘Come into my office, you are going to play Batman in a Batman film’ and I said, ‘Yeah!’ I called my friends and they screamed and I screamed and we couldn’t believe it!”

That is the only natural reaction to that phone call — joy. Loud, enthusiastic joy. However, once the movie started production, it was clear to Clooney that things were not going as well as everyone had hoped.

“It was a difficult film to be good in,” Clooney said. “With hindsight it’s easy to look back at this and go, ‘Woah, that was really sh*t and I was really bad in it.’”

And he never worked again. Haha, we know that’s not true. Clooney, to date, has become an extremely successful and reputable director and actor and now has two Golden Globes and an Oscar, plus numerous nominations. But in 1996 or thereabouts, when Batman Forever was (mysteriously) a huge success and Val Kilmer wanted nothing to do with the franchise anymore, Clooney wasn’t going to look a gift nipple in the mouth. HORSE. Gift horse. And, he says, it still wasn’t bad for his career because, after all — he had enough clout to be asked in the first place, didn’t he?

“…Batman is still the biggest break I ever had and it completely changed my career, even if it was weak and I was weak in it. It was a difficult film to be good in. I don’t know what I could have done differently.”

So, if you’re going to bank on an appearance in a horrible movie, make sure it can’t possibly be your fault if it turns out to be a flop. Choose your terrible scripts wisely. Then sit back, and let the nipples fly. SH*T SHOW. I meant to say “sh*t show.”

Of course, this all meant that none of us were treated to Schumacher’s third Batman movie, Batman Triumphant. I know … I know.

(via Spinoff Online)

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  • Anonymous

    I don’t know that it’s really that mysterious why Batman Forever was a huge success: it’s a highly entertaining bad movie.  I don’t think I’m alone in my belief that Jim Carey and Tommy Lee Jones were hilariously awesome villains.  I know a lot of people like the brooding, growling Batman, but as for me, I’m a fan of the camp.

    Also?  NIPPLES!

  • Frodo Baggins

    Does Mary Sue have a no expletives policy I wasn’t aware of? What’s with starring out “shit?”

  • Anonymous

    I secretly like “Batman and Robin.” Because of Alicia Silverstone’s Batgirl and the “awww” moments between ClooneyBatman and Alfred. They help me overlook the rest of the nonsense.

    Then again, I will gladly watch “Mannequin” or “Grease 2″, so my taste might be questionable.

  • kalsangikid

    I liked “Batman and Robin,” too, for the same reasons, plus Arnold’s Mr. Freeze was kind of endearing.

  • TJ Sharp

    I bet George Clooney realized it wasn’t going to be a good movie when Joel Schumacher said “Ok, now that you have your bat suit on, swing your butt to the camera!”

  • Smoke Tetsu

    OK, Clooney may have been bad in it but he wasn’t nearly the worst thing in the movie. Other people where much worse than him especially Arnold with lines like “LET’S KICK SOME ICE!!” and his generally hammy acting when he’s trying to be comedic which was even worse here than in other movies where he was trying to be comedic like Twins. 

    Also I hated Tommy Lee Jone’s performance in Batman Forever.. it was like he really wanted to be the next Jack Nicholson’s Joker rather than Two Face… if he acted more like he did in other movies like Men In Black he would have been more like Two Face than what he did in Batman Forever.. he had demonstrated that he could do that type of character yet he flubbed with Batman Forever and that has always baffled me in a way.

    I think even the Animated series did a lot better job than Shumacher ever did. Handing the franchise off to him was the worst thing they could have done for Batman. Even compared to the 60′s show which was a product of its time and more of a parody yet still not my favorite thing.

  • barbara

    I love it for the camp and the gorgeous costumes – Uma Thurman’s Poison Ivy was sooooo slinky.  Also, the Mister Freeze suit.

  • Anonymous

    The animated series will always be my favorite Batman anything.

  • Sara Marion

    hHmm.  Batman and nipples is more saucy than shit or being refrained from censoship when the word is still known.  I’m Ok about it.  This character, though, is intriguing.  The first was mesmerizing and I still think of Micahel Keaton as debonair for his role in this first film.  Val Kilmer should not overlook her performance for his casting, when he meets his bat in a return embrace to settle his potential onslaught of death.  It was a revelation.  For Mr. Clooney’s casting, as we say in my family, the role was different because the script was potentially perplexing for villains, not Clooney as Batman or even Batman.  The complex collusion between villains was meant to entail a different countdown for Batman, near children on his part, and for the villains, mass genocide through power realization of photosynthesis.  Good job Mr. George Clooney, you needed your nipples for it!