Armie Hammer Explains His Dark, Deranged Batman Role In 'Justice League Mortal'

The idea of a Justice League film directed by Mad Max: Fury Road filmmaker George Miller seems almost too good to be true, with the truth being this dream almost became a reality in 2009. That production of Justice League Mortal might have been abandoned, but not before Armie Hammer could earn the role of Batman and begin to unpack the complicated character.

"It was pre-Christian Bale but the Christian Bale Batman had a lot more in common with it than any of the previous ones, whether it be George Clooney or Michael Keaton, which were almost campy," Hammer told the Happy Sad Confused podcast about his version of the Dark Knight. "This was one about a guy who is severely psychologically, almost deranged. It was dark and it was really intense and this guy had major trust issues, the whole thing. It was a great concept and a really cool idea."

The last few actors to take the mantle of Bruce Wayne have established their acting careers over the course of decades, whereas Hammer had only been acting for a few years prior to landing the role. Nobody knew who he was at the time, and he was as surprised as anyone to have landed the role.

"That was crazy. That was nuts," Hammer confessed. "I was just a kid with a goofy name"

The abandoned project focused on younger talent to tell the story of the Justice League, with the project having been shrouded in secrecy even at the audition stage.

"I can specifically remember getting the phone call, and them being like, 'You got the part in the movie,'" Hammer recalled. "We didn't know what part we were going in for. They didn't say you were going in for Batman. It was nothing. Literally nothing. They didn't even give you scenes from the movie. My audition scene was the Ned Beatty monologue from Network."

The film was announced in 2007 but, due to a writer's strike, production was delayed until 2009. The plug was unfortunately pulled seemingly days before shooting was to officially begin, with Jay Baruchel, who was set to play villain Maxwell Lord, having also revealed to the Happy Sad Confused podcast, "They had all the costume design. They had all of the pre-vis. They had all of the sort of production design figure doubt, and they would take us and walk us through this command center where they had everything."

Given the underwhelming reception to the current version of the Justice League, fans are left wondering what could have happened if one of the best action filmmakers of all time could have used young actors to bring Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman to life years before Zack Snyder's Man of Steel kicked off the DCEU.

Justice League is currently in theaters.

[H/T Happy Sad Confused]