How Not to Make a Batman Movie: The Team Behind 'Batman & Robin' Trash It

In an official making-of featurette, the cast and crew are amazed by their work.
Batman-and-Robin.jpg
Warner Bros.

Despite the dark tones of the original Batman comics, it wasn't always intuitive that a film about a man who wears a bat-motif costume and fights bizarre villains with crazy gadgets should be dark and gritty and realistic-y. In fact, the Adam West TV show and feature-length movie of the late '60s were so influential in their campy take on the character that no one really knew what to do with him again cinematically until Tim Burton brought him back in the late '80s. Burton's batman wasn't as serious-minded as Frank Miller's or Alan Moore's reinterpretations in DC Comics, but it wasn't a joke, either. When Joel Schumacher stepped in for Burton after two runs, however, Schumacher was at first, in Batman Forever, a little more coy and then, with the universally loathed Batman & Robin, kitschy, garish, and out-of-control to an extent that still disorients critics.

After all these years, it turns out, no one has more articulately processed the disaster than George Clooney, Chris O'Donnell, and the rest of the gang behind it -- including the director himself. Via Movies.com, this candid, in moments apologetic, almost therapeutic, official making-of featurette for the film is a remarkable act of creative contrition.

Witness:



Presented by

J.J. Gould is the editor of TheAtlantic.com. More

He has written for The Washington MonthlyThe American ProspectThe Moscow Times, The Chronicle Herald, and The European Journal of Political Theory. Gould was previously an editor at the Journal of Democracy, co-published by the Johns Hopkins University Press and the National Endowment for Democracy, and a lecturer in history and politics at Yale University. He has also worked with McKinsey & Company's New York-based Knowledge Group on global public- and social-sector development and on the economics of carbon-emissions reduction. Gould has a B.A. in history from McGill University in Montreal, an M.Sc. from the London School of Economics, and a Ph.D. in politics from Yale. He is from Nova Scotia.

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. Who cares about youth? James Hamblin turns to his colleague Jeffrey Goldberg for advice.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. James Hamblin turns to a colleague for advice.

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Video

Pittsburgh: 'Better Than You Thought'

How Steel City became a bikeable, walkable paradise

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

More in Entertainment

Just In