An early-days Dark Knight, a Halloween setting, and a rogue's gallery all have onlookers questioning whether The Batman is an adaptation of seminal comic book story Batman: The Long Halloween. In the Matt Reeves-directed reboot following a tormented Bruce Wayne (Robert Pattinson) in year two of his costumed crime-fighting crusade, the Dark Knight detective investigates a conspiracy taking him out into the corruption-plagued streets of Gotham City. Somehow intertwined in this noir-driven mystery are embryonic versions of Catwoman (Zoe Kravitz), the Penguin (Colin Farrell), and the Riddler (Paul Dano), as well as scarred-face crime lord Carmine Falcone (John Turturro).
In Jeph Loeb and Tim Sales' The Long Halloween, set shortly after the events of origin tale Batman: Year One, a younger Batman unravels a mystery surrounding a serial killer as he grapples with the Gotham mob and a multitude of costumed "freaks." Catwoman and Falcone play pivotal roles in The Long Halloween, with Riddler and Penguin appearing in smaller parts.
In The Batman, it's the enigmatic Riddler who menaces a Gotham City already gripped by the mob. Depicted here as a masked madman and serial killer, this version of the Riddler is comparable to the egomaniac anarchist from Batman: Earth One Volume 2.
Photos from early in production tipped off a Halloween-time setting when set dressings included jack-o-lantern props, and the latest set photos show extras clad in Halloween costumes — including a pair of partygoers dressed as Superman and Wonder Woman. Other recent set photos showing a sleekly-dressed Selina Kyle and Falcone attending a funeral reveal three scratch marks marring the face of the crime boss, who has matching scars in The Long Halloween.
Reeves has publicly named The Long Halloween and its sequel, Dark Victory, as two of his favorite Batman stories. But the filmmaker has denied The Batman is an adaptation of any one comic book, including Year One, saying the reboot is shaped instead by over 70 years of Batman stories.
"We're not doing any particular [comic book]," Reeves told press in 2018. "Year One is one of the many comic books that I love. We are definitely not doing Year One. It's just exciting to be focused very specifically on a tale that is defining for [Bruce Wayne] and very personal to him."
Instead of an origin tale, this story is detective-based and "definitively Batman." Describing the original story as "noir-driven," Reeves added, "I went on a deep dive again revisiting all my favorite comics. Those all inform by osmosis ... It's very much trying to find a way to do this as something that for me is going to be definitively Batman and new and cool."
Reeves revealed other influences on The Batman during DC FanDome in August, including a crop of gritty 1970s cop movies that tell "street-grounded stories."
While The Batman is definitely its own thing, it’s becoming clear @mattreevesLA took some inspiration from The Long Halloween. An atmospheric crime drama is coming our way folks. pic.twitter.com/jdauRH3mcx— Brooks (@brookstweetz) October 13, 2020
Hearing The Batman is based off the long Halloween.
Nice.— 🎃𝕾𝖕𝖔𝖔𝖐𝖞𝕾𝖒𝖊𝖘𝖍🎃 (@SmeshJitsuOnly) October 14, 2020
the parallels between the batman (202?) and the long halloween (1996) is truly [chef kiss meme]— boo gourdon (@thychesters) October 15, 2020
Can't wait for the next Batman film if Long Halloween is going to be the foundation for adaptation— Victor Shade (@TheMSeries1) October 12, 2020
I'm getting a real long Halloween vibes from these set photosOctober 12, 2020
Judging by the looks of them, they look like Halloween costumes, likely indicating #TheBatman both takes pace around that time & will be heavily inspired by The Long Halloween. https://t.co/JLQ91s66UP— Tyler Freshcorn (@tyler_freshcorn) October 17, 2020
Starring Robert Pattinson, Zoe Kravitz, Paul Dano, Jeffrey Wright, Andy Serkis, John Turturro, and Colin Farrell, The Batman opens in theaters on March 4, 2022.prev