Was a very Dark Knight the reason Michael Keaton never returned to the Batman role after Batman Returns? With £750 million in merchandising far outstripping the £450 million box office take of Tim Burton’s first ‘Batman’ movie the darker sequel proved problematic for the marketing department of Warner Bros when it came to deals with MacDonalds, Toy companies and Coca Cola.
That meant a far lighter version of Bats was required for the third instalment and Michael Keaton was having none of it – ‘the script sucked’.
Batman Returns still did fairly good business in 1992 with an even bigger opening weekend than its predecessor – with the introduction of Danny DeVito as the evil Penguin, a fantastic Michelle Pffeiffer as the ultimate celluloid Catwoman (closely followed by Anne Hathaway) and an appearance from the enigmatic Christopher Walken thrown in for good measure as Max Shreck.
Empire gave the film 4 stars, but wished the movie didn’t take itself too seriously. A pity producers seem to take their advice for the next movie – ‘Batman Forever’. But that’s a future cover and another story!