Anybody seen The Joker? I’m gonna keep comin’ back until someone REMEMBERS seein’ The Joker.
The casting of Michael Keaton as Batman and Bruce Wayne in Tim Burton’s deliciously dark Caped Crusader movie was controversial, to say the least.
Known more as a comedic actor at the time, Keaton’s arrival on the project prompted a glut of angry complaints from comic book movie fans who flooded Warner Bros with letters protesting the decision.
And yet, as outlandish as casting Keaton may have seemed at the time, things could have been even stranger if some of those working behind the scenes on the movie had got their way.
Was Steven Seagal Almost Batman?
According to the film’s screenwriter Sam Gamm, some other even more unusual names were floated to play the Dark Knight – including a certain Steven Seagal.
A rising action star at the time, someone at Warner Bros. apparently viewed Seagal as the perfect person to play what would be a physically demanding role.
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Steven Seagal Rises
Hamm told SyFy Wire:
“There were a lot of people at Warner Brother who wanted to cast it with an action star. They wanted to cast the part as Batman, as opposed to casting it as Bruce Wayne. You have to make Bruce Wayne work, because Batman is, for the most part, going to be a stunt guy, or it’s going to be somebody running around in a costume in long shot. You don’t need the martial arts expertise of, say, Steven Seagal or somebody like that because you can fake all of that kind of stuff. Seagal was one of the people that was suggested to us.”
An Ultimate Action Movie Superhero
A skilled martial arts master, Seagal was seen as an intriguing option for the film. And though it never came particularly close to happening, Hamm admits it was a genuine point of discussion:
“Believe it or not, he had just kind of appeared on the scene, people thought holy cow, this guy’s badass. He could be Batman. I don’t think it ever got to the point where he read for it. He was just one of the names that was floated.”
Ultimately the role went to Keaton, who excelled in playing the duality of Wayne and his dark superhero alter ego. Could Seagal have pulled off the same feat?
One thing is undeniable: he would have kicked ass as Batman.
How ultimate of a Batman do you think Steven Seagal would have made? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!