Before Robert Pattinson was officially announced as the next big-screen Batman, following Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, Christian Bale, and Ben Affleck, word of his casting hit the internet. The actor, who hadn’t even auditioned yet, was not pleased. “When that thing leaked, I was f*cking furious,” he told Variety in a new interview. “Everyone was so upset. Everyone was panicking from my team. I sort of thought that had blown up the whole thing.”
Pattinson was less “f*cking furious” about the reaction to his casting. To many, he’s still known as the Twilight sparkly vampire, even though he’s since worked with (and given very good performances for) numerous acclaimed directors, including James Gray (The Lost City of Z), the Safdie brothers (Good Time), and Claire Denis (High Life). When asked about the backlash, including a silly online petition (“This is will ruin my childhood and my dreams”), the future-Dark Knight responded, “To be honest, it was less vitriolic than I was expecting. It’s much more fun when you’re an underdog. There’s no expectation of you.”
“When I was a kid, it was the only outfit that I had,” Pattinson says. But he won’t reveal where he used to wear his Batman costume. “If I actually said it in an interview, I would definitely have a lot of abuse afterwards,” he says with an outburst of nervous laughter. “If I successfully play the character, I can say it at the end.”
The Batman is Pattinson’s first superhero movie, but he had an “informational meeting” with Marvel around the time of 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy. “I don’t know what I would really be chasing,” he revealed. “The idea of trying that transition after Twilight, I never saw a road in that direction.” What changed between now and then? “It’s actually an interesting part,” he said. “I think it’s because he doesn’t have any superpowers.” Plus, once you work with Willem Dafoe, talking about spilling beans, you learn to fear nothing.
Directed by Matt Reeves, The Batman is scheduled to come out in 2021.