Joel Schumacher Says Tommy Lee Jones ‘Was Not Kind’ To Jim Carrey During Batman Forever

Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones in Batman Forever

Batman Forever is a Batman movie that largely gets overlooked. It's not lambasted the way Batman & Robin is, but it's not beloved the way so many of the others are. However, there is one story about the production of the movie that's been repeated more than once, which is that Tommy Lee Jones and Jim Carrey, who played the two villains of the film, really did not get along. Now, director Joel Schumacher has confirmed that the story is very true. It seems Jones really didn't like Carrey.

Batman Forever was the second movie that Tommy Lee Jones worked on with Joel Schumacher, and the director tells Vulture that while working with Jones the first time was wonderful, the actor was really mean to his co-star on the second film. According to Schumacher...

He was fabulous on The Client. But he was not kind to Jim Carrey when we were making Batman Forever. And I didn’t say Val [Kilmer] was difficult to work with on Batman Forever. I said he was psychotic.

Jim Carrey has spoken before that the situation between himself and Jones on the set of Batman Forever was heated. According to Carrey, Tommy Lee Jones called what the Ace Ventura actor did "buffoonery" and did it to his face.

Jim Carrey has suggested the reason Tommy Lee Jones didn't like him was simply that Jones had a problem with the film, and the more comic way the comic book property was handled under Schumacher. The feeling was that maybe Jones wasn't comfortable with that sort of work. The director suggests the animosity may have come from somewhere else, saying that Tommy Lee Jones likes to be the center of a scene, and being the center of attention is tough when you're standing next to Jim Carrey...

Tommy is, and I say this with great respect, a scene stealer. Well, you can’t steal the scene from Jim Carrey. It’s impossible. And, I think it irked Tommy.

It's not entirely uncommon for actors who work together to discover they don't necessarily love each other personally. Usually, however, everybody involved is a professional, and the work gets done with a minimum of drama and people move on. The reason Joel Schumacher seems to be calling out Tommy Lee Jones here is that he felt Jones' place in Hollywood gave him a responsibility to be more professional, that the actor did not live up to...

No, he wasn’t kind to Jim. He did not act towards Jim the way an Oscar winner with a star on Hollywood Boulevard, being the oldest member of the cast, and having such a distinguished career and the accolades to go with it, should have acted towards Jim. But what happens on the set stays on the set.

While Joel Schumacher apparently is willing to talk about Tommy Lee Jones general conduct, he'll be leaving the specifics out.

Needless to say, Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones have never worked together since, and based on this information, it seems unlikely to ever happen again.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.