Despite Warner Brothers president Alan Horn’s insistence they want to do a third Batman movie right, the rumors are still circulating. Horn says progress on the movie isn’t moving forward yet. Christopher Nolan hasn’t signed on yet. A script isnt’ even in progress yet. And yet we’re getting casting news, makeup tests, and more. And the people putting the rumors out there aren’t relenting in the least.

Take, for instance, that absolutely absurd rumor that the Riddler will be appearing in the third movie played by Eddie Murphy. Don’t get me wrong, I like Murphy, but his career has been shit for the last couple of years. He actually found a way to resurrect things with Dreamgirls, and then turned around and made Norbit and Meet Dave. So the idea of him appearing in a Batman movie is even more absurd than Michael Keaton playing the caped crusader himself. But the rumor has been put out there, and the man who originally reported it, Gordan Smart of The Sun, says that he stands by his reporting.

MTV Movies Blog reports that Smart has chosen to defend his reporting from the relentless fanboy attacks, because it comes from a reliable source. The blog points out that the same source gave Smart the news in 2005 that Daniel Craig was going to be the next Bond, which proved true. Still, we’ve had our own anonymous tipsters here, and I can guarantee that they don’t have a 100% batting average, as much as we might like them to. Things change behind closed doors, and studios know that living in the age of Internet reporting means they have to put red herrings out there - and that’s what this smells like, a big old red fish.

Not helping Smart’s case is a story on MTV’s other blog, Splash Page, which says Murphy’s representatives have denied his involvement in a Dark Knight sequel to Access Hollywood. If the rumor is true, Murphy isn’t revealing it anytime soon.

I return to my original thought on a third Nolan Batman movie - it isn’t far enough along yet to create these kinds of rumors. Anything put out there should be received with extreme skepticism until we hear the movie is actually under way - reliable tipsters or not.

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