Bond Alum Pierce Brosnan Admits He Blew The Chance To Play Batman With Tim Burton

Pierce Brosnan in Black Adam and Michael Keaton in Batman Returns
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Actor Pierce Brosnan has been a successful actor for decades, although his name is perhaps most closely associated with his tenure playing the title character of the James Bond franchise. But it turns out that he missed out on another major franchise role: Bruce Wayne/ Batman. And the former 007 recently explained how he blew the chance to play the Dark Knight for Tim Burton.

Tim Burton was the man behind the first two Batman movies, which starred Michael Keaton as Gotham’s protector. But Pierce Brosnan was also up for the role, although he clearly didn’t end up booking it. He recently appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon to promote his upcoming DC movie, where he explained what went down when he was meeting with the Edward Scissorhands filmmaker, saying:

I went up for Batman way back in the day, when Tim Burton was doing it. Obviously I didn’t get the job. But, you know, I remember saying something stupid to Tim Burton. I said, ‘I can’t understand any man who would wear his underpants outside his trousers.’ But there you go. The best man got the job. Dr. Fate and I were meant to be on the same page I think.

Well, there you have it. While Pierce Brosnan definitely had the acting chops and bone structure to pull off suiting up as Batman in Tim Burton’s pair of movies, he didn’t exactly nail the meeting with that visionary filmmaker. And the former James Bond even admits that the right man ultimately got the job. Plus he’s finally getting to play a DC superhero, just decades later.

Pierce Brosnan’s comments to Jimmy Fallon come as he’s promoting his role as Dr. Fate in Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam movie (check out the reviews here). Fans are psyched to see 007 in a superhero suit and cape, and it seems like a long time coming– especially considering that he was up for the role of Batman back in the day. Luckily for fans, we don’t have to wait much longer until his DC hero is on the big screen.

Tim Burton’s Batman movies are still wildly popular, and were a huge success upon their release in 1989 and 1992 respectively. Michael Keaton’s performance is truly iconic, and fans are psyched to see him suit back up in The Flash (although he also had a role in the scrapped Batgirl movie). But it’s fun to imagine Pierce Brosnan in the role, although I have to wonder if he still would have gotten the role as James Bond if he’d already played the Dark Knight.

In Black Adam, Pierce Brosnan will play the DC hero Dr. Fate, who is one of the more experienced members of the Justice Society of America. He’s a magical hero who is expected to be quite powerful, and it should be interesting to see how his action sequences are handled. For his role, Brosnan rocked a motion capture suit while filming alongside fellow actors like Noah Centineo. 

Black Adam will hit theaters on October 21st. In the meantime, check out the 2022 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. 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 famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.