Christopher Nolan

Life must be pretty fantastic for Christopher Nolan.  He’s worked on some of the most influential, innovative and successful movies of all time. He stewarded Heath Ledger through the performance of a lifetime (tragically) and is one of the few to really master the art of non-linear story telling; Memento is a film that needs to be watched and re-watched several times before the full genius of it sinks in.

With the Batman franchise, he managed to supplant what fan’s of the Dark Knights considered to be the penultimate interpretation of the character – Batman the Animated Series.  After the disastrous state the movie franchise found itself in after Joel Schumacher was finished with it, the character needed a visionary to bring it back to life. Thankfully, that’s what the fans got. Saying that Nolan exceeded expectations for Batman Begins is an understatement. And we all know what happened with The Dark Knight.

So now we find ourselves at the initial stages of the creation of the 3rd installment of the Batman series, and where does Nolan find himself? Surprisingly, contemplating the end of the franchise:

“Without getting into specifics, the key thing that makes the third film a great possibility for us is that we want to finish our story. I’m very excited about the end of the film, the conclusion, and what we’ve done with the characters.”

Which I think for fans will be much more satisfying to have a complete story arc instead of an ever expanding series of adventures, that will eventually peter out when either the interest or the quality runs out.

“Viewing it as an ending, that sets you very much on the right track about the appropriate conclusion and the essence of what tale we’re telling. And it harkens back to that priority of trying to find the reality in these fantastic stories. That’s what we do.”

The question is, who will be the villain?  There has been lots of speculation online, but all Nolan will say to that question is:

“…it won’t be Mr. Freeze.”

And fanboys and girls let out a collective sigh of relief.

Superman / BatmanSo what will Nolan do when his work is complete on Batman?

Apparently he’s set his sites on the Man-of-Steel.  Nolan is set to act as ‘godfather’ and producer to the as of yet un-named director of the rebooted Superman franchise.  He and writer David Goyer are apparently tackling the character from a different angle than Richard Donner’s vision that was carried over into Brian Singers’ Superman Returns.  This new vision is…

“…a way of approaching the story I’ve never seen before that makes it incredibly exciting.”

(Read the rest of the interview at the LA Times.)

Personally I haven’t felt this excited about a new Superman story since The Death of Superman back in 1992.

So, what to do until the latest Batman and Superman movies are released sometime in 2011 and perhaps 2012?

Nolan’s latest oeuvre, Inception, staring Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, Marion Cotilliard, Ken Watanabe and Joseph Gordon-Levitt opens July 16th.