Twenty years later, Michael Keaton is returning to one of his most iconic characters.
This week, the “Dopesick” star appeared on SiriusXM’s “The Jess Cagle Show” and talked about reprising his role as Batman in the upcoming DC movies “The Flash” and “Batgirl”.
“I’ve embraced it. I mean, why would you not?” he said of the big superhero comeback. “And it’s the right time after all this, I’m playing catch-up. I have played catch-up.”
Keaton said that to him the original Tim Burton “Batman” and its sequel “was a job” to him, bolstered by working with a director and actors he admired. But he decided to step away from the franchise with the third film, “Batman Forever”, directed by Joel Schumacher.
“The third one, I just couldn’t do,” he said. “I just thought, ‘Well, this is not good. This is not good. I just can’t do it. I just I’ll blow my brains out. Just can’t live with myself.’ And so I walked away and then as time went on, it’s like I caught up with culture.”
He continued, “I was really out of it to be honest. And at some point you’re a jerk, if you don’t go, ‘Well, this is a legitimate world. You’re no better or worse than this.'”
He soon started to think about what it would be like to return to Batman, “And then coincidentally, there was murmurs. I got a call from Warner Brothers. They wanted to talk to me about something and there was hints of Batman.”
Eventually, Keaton was asked to read the script for “The Flash”, which will feature a multiverse story that includes Ben Affleck’s iteration of Batman as well.
“I just thought, ‘Of course you had to do this,'” Keaton said. “But it has to be good. There’s no reason to do it if it’s not good. It’s not gonna really change anything I don’t think. So, it’s really good. And I just jumped in and had fun. And why would you not? You know. Director, Andy Muschietti is fantastic and it’s really creative.”
“The Flash” is set to premiere Nov. 4, 2022, with “Batgirl” also currently planned for 2022.