Tim Burton Throws Shade at His Batman and Superman Appearing in The Flash

Burton addresses Michael Keaton and Nicolas Cage's surprising DC returns.

DC's The Flash movie had a lot for fans to talk about, between the events of the film and the long and winding journey it had to the big screen. Some of the most buzzed-about moments occurred in The Flash's third act, which briefly brought back a number of previous live-action portrayals of Batman and Superman. In addition to Michael Keaton's Batman, who had a supporting role in The Flash, the third act included Nicolas Cage's iteration of Superman, who was set to appear in a film titled Superman Lives, which was ultimately scrapped by Warner Bros. in the late 1990s. Tim Burton, who directed Keaton's first two Batman movies and was lined up to direct Superman Lives, recently addressed these The Flash returns in an interview with BFI — and argued that the cameos "culturally misappropriate" what his vision was for both characters.

"No, I don't have regrets," Burton said of Superman Lives. "I will say this: when you work that long on a project and it doesn't happen, it affects you for the rest of your life. Because you get passionate about things, and each thing is an unknown journey, and it wasn't there yet. But it's one of those experiences that never leaves you, a little bit. But also it goes into another AI thing, and this is why I think I'm over it with the studio. They can take what you did, Batman or whatever, and culturally misappropriate it, or whatever you want to call it. Even though you're a slave of Disney or Warner Brothers, they can do whatever they want. So in my latter years of life, I'm in quiet revolt against all this."

How Did Michael Keaton Return in The Flash?

Keaton, who was confirmed to be involved in The Flash years prior to the film's debut, reprised his role as Bruce Wayne / Batman, joining forces with Kara Zor-El / Supergirl (Sasha Calle) and two versions of Barry Allen / The Flash (Ezra Miller) to fight General Zod (Michael Shannon), before dying in the ensuing battle. As The Flash director Andy Muschietti told ComicBook.com prior to the film's debut, Keaton was the only choice for the film's incarnation of Batman.

"There was no Plan B," Muschietti explained. "Yeah, it was a continuation in the sense that the world where we find Michael Keaton is the same universe where he was in his adventures in the Tim Burton movies. It's just, you know, we have to take some licenses. Some creative licenses to replicate some of the things that are designed. Make things evolve because I wanted Batman to have kept being Batman for a few more years after we saw him for the last time. 

What Is The Flash Movie About?

The Flash sped into theaters on June 16th, reshaping the DC Multiverse with the help of familiar faces and brand-new heroes. Barry Allen (Ezra Miller) ventures to the past to change history, resulting in massive repercussions for the future. Forced to team up with another version of Barry, the mysterious Kryptonian known as Supergirl (Sasha Calle), and the iconic Batman (Michael Keaton), the Scarlet Speedster is forced to reckon with his mistakes and save a doomed reality. The Flash is directed by Andy Muschietti, written by Christina Hodson from a story by Joby Harold, and produced by Barbara Muschietti.

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