How Darren Aronofsky’s Batman Films Would Have Differed From The Dark Knight Trilogy

Batman poster for Dark Night Rises

While superheroes are everywhere, DC's Batman is on another level. The character has a ton of iconography and love behind it, as there have been a myriad of live-action and animated adaptations of the Caped Crusader's comic book adventures. Ben Affleck currently holds the mantle in the DCEU (who knows for how long), but a few years earlier was Christopher Nolan's acclaimed Dark Knight Trilogy. Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky was originally developing a movie called Batman: Year One, although it was scrapped, and Nolan eventually took control of the character. Aronofsky recently spoke about his planned film, and how it would have differed from Nolan's eventual trilogy.

I think Nolan's version is exactly what the studio wanted. I think I was much more of a gritty feel is what we were going for.

Despite Batman: Year One never making it to production, Darren Aronofsky doesn't seem bitter. In fact, he recognizes that Christopher Nolan was the right guy for the job, especially given the wild success of his three films.

Darren Aronofsky's comments to The Playlist are sure to be intriguing, if only because he claimed his Batman movie would be even grittier than Christopher Nolan's trilogy. The Dark Knight movies accrued a ton of praise regarding how "real" thy were. Bruce Wayne took serious punishment, was far from invincible, and dealt with very real interpersonal struggles. If Aronofsky was going to create something even more gritty, I shutter to think that Gotham's protector might have endured.

Of course, Darren Aronofsky is a director/writer who is synonymous with gritty and sometimes horrifying film projects. His most recent work was the allegory mother!, starring Jennifer Lawrence. While there was a ton of buzz around the film, grisly imaged of Lawrence being beaten and a baby being killed turned cinephiles off. Meanwhile, both Black Swan and The Wrestler deal with the psychological issues and physical torture that comes with being a professional athlete. Aronofsky lives on grit, so it would stand to reason that his superhero movie would do the same.

Christopher Nolan's Dark Night Trilogy has become the quintessential live-action Batman movies, with a serialized story that helps it edge out Tim Burton's original two films. Zack Snyder once again brought the character to the silver screen in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. While the overall film was a bit of a wash, Ben Affleck was praised for bringing an older and jaded Batman to life. He ultimately returned as a bit lighter character in Justice League, although its unclear how long the actor will be in the DCEU.

Matt Reeves is currently working on a Batman solo movie, although it's currently unclear what it will be about, or who will be playing the Caped Crusader. The next installment in the DCEU is Aquaman on December 21st, 2018. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.