Batman director Tim Burton has strong words for Warner Bros in regards to the infamous Bat nipples in Batman Forever and Batman and Robin.
In 1989, Tim Burton’s Batman was released and became a massive hit with audiences and critics. Up until the release of The Dark Knight, it was the single highest-grossing film featuring the Caped Crusader. Burton himself, however, didn’t like how much creative control had been taken from him over the course of the production and was unhappy with the final product. For the sequel, Warner Bros allowed Tim Burton a greater amount of control over the film which resulted in the 1992 film, Batman Returns.
At the time of its release, Batman Returns was a controversial film. The film’s darker aspects and sexual undertones caused outrage among parent groups who felt it had no business being marked to children. While ultimately the film was still a big hit, the studio felt that it had lost out on merchandising money because of the outrage. This eventually lead to Joel Schumacher directing the third and fourth films which became controversial in a completely different way.
One of the most infamous aspects of the Joel Schumacher Batman films was the costume design. Specifically, the suit design included nipples on the Caped Crusader’s outfit. While speaking to Empire, Tim Burton spoke about the design and pointed out the hypocrisy of including that design aspect while giving him grief for his:
“[Back then] they went the other way. That’s the funny thing about it. But then I was like, ‘Wait a minute. Okay. Hold on a second here. You complain about me, I’m too weird, I’m too dark, and then you put nipples on the costume? Go fuck yourself.’ Seriously. So yeah, I think that’s why I didn’t end up [doing a third film.]
I’m not just overly dark. That represents me in the sense that…that’s how I see things. It’s not meant as pure darkness. There’s a mixture. I feel really fondly about [‘Batman Returns’] because of the weird experiment that it felt like.”
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