Director Christopher Nolan revitalized the DC film brand when he brought Batman Begins to the big screen back in 2005, and expanded that success into a beloved trilogy of films. Part of that process involved depicting the well-known origin of the character, which was brought to life in part by young Bruce Wayne actor Guss Lewis.
The actor was 10 when he got the part, and his performance during one of the most iconic origins in comics was positively received. Now Lewis is in his early twenties and recently had the chance to experience that origin story again thanks to Playstation VR's Arkham VR. Lewis spoke to GQ in a lengthy interview, where he shared some details about working with Christopher Nolan.
"Casting agents came to my school during lunchtime one day and within three auditions I’d got the part. The final audition was with the director Christopher Nolan, and I remember being struck by the gentleness of his demeanor. It was the same throughout filming. He would crouch down to my level to deliver his softly spoken notes and was always receptive to anything I had to say in return. He was very different from the gregarious and voluble Michael Caine, but they were both equally welcoming to me in their own way."
Lewis also recalls the lone interaction he had with Christian Bale, who played the Dark Knight in all of Nolan's films.
"It was here that I had my only encounter with Christian Bale – I was lucky to meet him, we didn’t share any scenes. He was sat in his chair, in full Batsuit minus cowl, having a rest between takes where he was rescuing Katie Holmes from Falcone’s henchmen on the monorail stairway. Black circles were painted around his eyes to ensure no bare skin was visible through his eyeholes when masked. I can’t remember much about our conversation, except that he was very nice to me and apologized for having to look like a panda. Afterwards my mum said I looked a bit like him, but that I shouldn’t worry, I didn’t have such thin lips."
Lews also talks about his experience with Rocksteady's Arkham VR, and he at times he felt like he was transported back in time to his days on set.
"The game starts off with the young Bruce witnessing his parents’ murder – a scene I know only too well. It was a bizarre feeling reliving it. I genuinely did feel a bit like my ten-year-old self again, watching the action unfold from waist height – I had what I’d describe as a flashback of a flashback (triggered by a flashback). Well, I did until the thug went off-script, leaned in close to my face and warned me: “That’s what happens when you try to be a hero.” It was the kind of thing that would have been cartoonish in film, but terrifying in VR."
You can see what the Bruce Wayne actor looks like today in the gallery. As for Arkham VR, the anticipated experience is available for PlayStation VR now.
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