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Off My Mind: Does Batman 3 Need a Female Lead?

Batman should just fight crime. He doesn't have time for love.

What do all the Batman movies have in common besides having Batman in them? Every movie has had a female lead. Batman or Bruce Wayne has had a girlfriend in each movie. In Batman there was Vicki Vale. In Batman Returns there was Catwoman, In Batman Forever there was Nicole Kidman as Dr. Chase Meridian. Batman & Robin had Poison Ivy (okay, not necessarily Batman's girlfriend but there was flirting of sorts involved) as well as Elle Macpherson as Julie Madison. Batman Begins and The Dark Knight both had Rachel Dawes (played by separate actresses). 
It's been reported that an "insider" revealed that Christopher Nolan has been auditioning several actresses in their late 20s/early 30s for a lead role. No names were mentioned and the actresses apparently weren't even told what the role they were auditioning for. 
There are a few female characters Nolan could choose, but does Batman really need to have another love interest? 
 == TEASER == 
I'm not trying to be sexist or have this just be a boys' club but it seems whenever there's a female character, they're usually just a distraction to Batman. I wouldn't mind seeing Catwoman or Talia al Ghul in a role worthy of their comic book counterparts. I understand why Hollywood might want to try to infuse some love or chemistry in movies but that's not a large part of who Batman is. As a Batman fan, I want to see him using his detective and crime-fighting skills. I don't need to see him struggling with trying to choose between love and his dedication to rid the city of evil. 
Hopefully we'll be getting more details soon. It's hard to say how reliable that "insider" might be with their information. I do have a feeling we well see yet another female character added. I would like to see the character serve more of a purpose than just playing a love interest for Batman or Bruce. We should have faith in Nolan, especially since Warner Brothers is practically giving him free reign over the movie. If we do have a female character, who would you want to see? Catwoman? Harley Quinn? Talia? Lady Shiva? Some other random "girlfriend"? What Hollywood actress would you like to see join the cast?
126 Comments Refresh
Posted by FadeToBlackBolt

They need either Catwoman or Talia in an anti-hero/anti-villain tragic love interest role or Huntress (Helena Bertenelli) as the rival "lethal" vigilante. 
Just another "normy" would waste a perfect opportunity, but the film does need a female lead. 

Posted by danhimself

I think that Catwoman or Talia would be the best choice for the movie-verse....I keep seeing people that say they want Harley but for me Harley having a first appearance without the Joker just doesn't work

Posted by Deadknight

It obviously depends on the direction of the storyline. Didn't Ra's Al Ghul get supposedly killed in Batman Begins? If so, then Talia would probably be a possible decision to follow up on that, vengeance-wise. Also, Catwoman could easily fit into the current Batman movie series, although she could still get written as a simple side-love-interest. Nevertheless, with the right story, both Talia or Catwoman could have a time to shine.
Posted by Decept-O

While I would love to see Poison Ivy or Catwoman, I do think the ideas of having Talia al Ghul or Lady Shiva ( as suggested by Babs), would be reasonable and be in tune with the movies story lines and tone.  
Posted by G-Man
@danhimself: I don't really want Harley but they could bring her in because Joker is in Arkham and she's ticked at Batman or something. Committing chaos in Joker's name, etc.
Posted by anunsi

Talia al Ghul makes the most sense but it could be a part for a all new character. As far as Nolans movies go, I dont recall him ever wasting time on the love story to the point where it gets in the way of the action. I feel good about him doing this movie.

Posted by Sydpart2

I don't see why this movie needs a female lead. I mean the guy just lost someone he's known since he was 8 and who he loved. Unless the next film picks up years after TDK (which would be odd, but still could work) then having him fall in love with someone else would feel cheap. But if it has to be done, go for Talia since the set up is there and Ra's can come back without a problem.

Posted by WarChild

I`m pretty sure that Nolan has the Women auditioning for the role of Talia Al Ghul.

Posted by Emerald Dragonfly

DAMN IT, I AGREE. Bruce Wayne should crush skulls! No time for women, they are needless. I know that Batman believe in justice more than he needs a girflriend. Nothing else matters. Go get them, Dark Knight.

Posted by pinchpaker29

I wanna say 'No' batman does not need it. But looking at the way Ivy's ASSets were drawn in that pic made me think twice... Just kidding, to be honest, I want Talia with him, it makes sense since Ra's was in the first movie,maybe they can get her pregnant so that we can see Damian in the movies....

Posted by danhimself
@G-Man: I suppose that could work but I think it would work better with the Joker making some sort of appearance...I'd like to see the Joker poking at that craziness inside her until he breaks her....but we're not going to see that though
Posted by dondasch

Catwoman is overdone in my opinion.  I'd much rather see Talia al Ghul or Lady Shiva.  Leaning toward Lady Shiva at this point but both would fit into the storyline I think.

Posted by Zereta

The way Nolanverse Batman is going? Selina Kyle.

Posted by The Devil Tiger
@danhimself said:
"I think that Catwoman or Talia would be the best choice for the movie-verse....I keep seeing people that say they want Harley but for me Harley having a first appearance without the Joker just doesn't work "

Posted by Moomin123
@FadeToBlackBolt said:
"They need either Catwoman or Talia in an anti-hero/anti-villain tragic love interest role or Huntress (Helena Bertenelli) as the rival "lethal" vigilante.   Just another "normy" would waste a perfect opportunity, but the film does need a female lead.  "

I agree. But I'd prefer Catwoman in this film. If Talia was in the movie, she'd be pissed at Batman for killing her dad in Batman Begins.
Edited by Bruce Vain

If there she be a female character in this it should be just Talia or Selina - his true loves. It shouldn't be someone that they made up just for the movie if it's not those 2 then don't bother putting in a female lead.  
Honestly , as a true hearted Batman fan as I am. As much as I prefer him being a loner most of the times. I would like to see him be happy in his life. Of all the pain and lost he has been dealt with, he deserves love. The only true weakness of Bruce is his heart, he tries not to have love for someone special. That's why he shields it from others so he doesn't get to close. Which I can relate with. The darkness he surrounds himself in - I would like to see a little light of hope. A hope for him to be happy, and not think he'll always be alone.
Posted by Neuron

In this case, the answer is yes.  Rachel had a specific function in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, and it wasn't just "generic love interest".  She was Bruce's human side.  In Batman Begins, she essentially set him on the path to training himself and becoming a force of justice and not revenge.  In The Dark Knight, she shows Bruce that a man like Harvey Dent can be a hero; when she dies, she also causes his crisis of faith in his own mission, which he resolves by taking the wrath of Gotham and focusing it on himself.
In Batman 3, a character that would perform the function of restoring his faith and showing him a new way forward would be very appropriate, and it would round out the trilogy nicely as far as that aspect of Bruce's mission goes.  Personally, I think a version of Catwoman would be good for this, but really any new love interest could fill that role for him.  In any case, it does make a lot of sense for a new female lead to be in the next movie.

Posted by buhssuht

Harley Quinn would make sense if Heath Ledger were still alive and the joker arc continued, but since that's somewhat impossible at the moment let's go with Talia for. 
But seriously, looking at it now the Batman turning to be James Bond, where he gets new lady in every movie

Posted by countvontrey

I think the series could use a strong female lead. Rachel was practically the only female character (do we count Barbara Gordon?) and she certainly isn't returning.  
I like the idea of Talia as a potential villain, but the love interest aspect of it isn't necessary.

Posted by GothamRed
@FadeToBlackBolt: I wouldn't count on huntress, it doesn't seem Nolan wants batman to have any costumed assistance, that wouldn't be "realistic", like falling from a 12 story building and not getting hurt, or "gritty", like a boat full of russian ballet dancers.  Ugh
Posted by FadeToBlackBolt
@GothamRed: I don't think she'll be in it either, it'd just be a cool idea, and I love Helena. 
That falling from the building without spreading the cape was the only part of TDK where i went, wtf? 
The Russian dancers suited Bruce Wayne's image though.
Posted by Superguy1591

Why is it that these editorials always try to make Batman into some cool superbad@ass? He's a human being, he needs love like the rest of us. He's just an ordinary guy in a Halloween costume. 

Posted by N7_Normandy

I'm certainly for either Talia or Selina

Posted by Golden Cod

I don't know if this would work in Nolan-verse but Talia al Ghul could masquerade as a socialite that dates Bruce's socialite persona and then try to destroy Wayne Corp from the inside out.

Posted by Joe Venom


It has worked for him so far, besides like Tony said there just a distraction and it will just waste funding to hire a lead actress anyway, I'd rather see better fight scenes or the introduction of Dick he doesn't have to be Robin just yet, IMO
Posted by Marshal Victory
@G-Man said:
" @danhimself: I don't really want Harley but they could bring her in because Joker is in Arkham and she's ticked at Batman or something. Committing chaos in Joker's name, etc. "

OK i dig this idea .But i can also see every one in a red hat in this video wearn a batman costume for ssaid movie.. 
  How soon people forget at man the playa .
Edited by johnny_spam

The title is The Dark Knight Rises
I kind of agree with this article I think to further cement that fact that Batman is alone against the world he shouldn't have a love interest.

Edited by queenfrost_

What would make sense:
1.) Harleen Quinzel still works at Arkham Asylum and makes a cameo, giving Bruce Wayne a tour of the premises.
2.) Selina Kyle is just a normal cat burgular who Batman stops and throws in jail. (who's also good at hand-to-hand combat - since Lucius Fox did say Batman's suit was ''cat proof'' in TDK)
3.) Talia Al Ghaul the twisted villain/love interest, looking for revenge but falls for Bruce Wayne, not Batman.
4.) A brief mention at the end of the film of a female 'Batman' with a crossbow running around the city.
Plus, if Nolan recognizes the growing success of Gotham City Sirens, he could make a smart move by bringing in some form of a kick-a$$ female.

Posted by Green ankh

I never enjoyed the love angle in the books.
Posted by Tainted-Cell

There are a dozen women who should be a part of this movie. It's like listing through all the men that need to be in it... they're just characters belonging in the Batman universe.
Off the top of my head, these two are the one's I think would work perfectly
Leslie Thompkins - Thomas Wayne wasn't the only doctor in Bruce's life
Renee Montoya - surely there will be someone on the Batman task force asking questions.
The rest... 
Catwoman - we've seen in some form or another 
Ivy - I imagine Nolan will avoid her like the plague 
Vicki Vale - honestly, who doesn't think of Lois Lane?

Avenging a "loved one"
Harley - we're not going to see without the Joker  
Talia - we've already seen Ra's ideas, don't need to see them again
Sofia - too two-dimensional for me to care about

Posted by superzero93

I think Nolan will be auditioning girls for the role of Talia Al Ghul. But if he chooses a girlfriend instead say Vesper Fairchild Nolan could add a secondary plot to the story by making Bruce a fugitive for vespers murder. you could also do the same with Jezebel Jet and introduce simon hurt and the black glove as the criminal organisation taking over Gotham. on the other hand if he uses Talia and they get together they could introduce Damion in batman four (but that is a big if) but batman might not be old enough to have a kid considering he hasn't even got a sidekick yet. (which Nolan said he wouldn't include a sidekick as long as he was in charge)

Posted by Chicago_Bruce

The sort answer - no - Bruce/Batman doesn't need love in his life. But that's not going to stop Hollywood from adding it in.

Posted by Gylan Thomas

It's not about weather the movie needs a female lead. It's a smiple matter of weather hollywood is willing to risk not putting one in there.

Posted by Mainline
@Tainted-Cell said:
" Leslie Thompkins - Thomas Wayne wasn't the only doctor in Bruce's life"
The animated series and then reading back issues made me think this character has a lot of potential and it's my sincerest desire to see her in the Batman Arkham City videogame of all places... but I don't know if she works in the Nolan film series because her role is somewhat similar to Rachel, Alfred, Thomas Wayne flashbacks, and indeed R'as returning.  Having this big moral nurturing humanizing figure suddenly spring up despite supposedly always being there would be a bit too much I think (and shades of R'as and Rachel). 
If they're introducing her to Batman for the first time (or suddenly made significant rather than a long standing significance that we never knew about) I suppose it could work but might be spending too much time on an ancillary character. 
Anyways, good character to mention.
Edited by Doctor!!!!!

Everyone needs love... 
Maybe he should have Ms.Selina Kyle, and a little mix of Harley Quinn....

Posted by Grendel

Ras Al Ghul was mishandled if only because having the character in a film and not including Talia is a cheat. And I'm not one of those "IT HAS TO BE EXACTLY LIKE THE COMIC" people.

Posted by blaakmawf

I don't think Harley Quinn would work without the joker. Gotta be Talia or Catwoman.

Posted by ComicMan24
@danhimself said:
" I think that Catwoman or Talia would be the best choice for the movie-verse....I keep seeing people that say they want Harley but for me Harley having a first appearance without the Joker just doesn't work "
Posted by PrinceIMC

Huntress! But no romance, they should hate each other in both identities.

Posted by Video_Martian

I still wanna see either Catwoman or Talia in this movie...

Posted by EnSabahNurX

I want talia to be the female lead just for a change in the movies thats a fun dynamic to watch translate on screen but im not against catwoman as long as it's not halle berry XD
Also i agree i want batman to show off his super sleuthing abilities in which he is famous for


my money is on Talia
Posted by Shadowdoggy

I don't necessarily think it needs a female "lead" but it definitely needs a strong female presence

Talia would be a great addition IMO

Posted by Dr. Detfink

This isn't even a question. Course not. That's never been the driving force for Bruce unlike Spider-man where he's always desired a girl but could never get her because of misfortune.

Posted by Lvenger

Talia or Catwoman would make a worthy female addtion to this film. But I agree with you G-Man more time should be spent on Batman crime fighting than doting on love with a random girl.

Posted by Mumbles

it's was that major in Nolans movies. not really much of a love between rachael and bruce. thought it was more of a childhood fling thing. even though at the end of dark knight, with the letter and all, it's forgettable. the story can move on.  would like to see catwomen or talia with bruce in the next film.

Posted by knife

Of course there will be a female in the movie because of equal rights, but I have to agree about Batman NOT needing a love interest. I would love to see Batman getting his famous sidekick Robin. But not a robin that is already grown, I want to see a younger person in their early teens the way it was started in the 1940's.
Posted by Mainline

When I think "lead" I think of someone who makes it to the cover of the DVD or is featured on a poster.  It's interesting that in Begins, neither Ra's, Scarecrow, or Rachel were able to make it to any image meant to represent the film... but in Dark Knight, there are a couple of different Joker centric or featuring posters, covers, promo sites, etc.  So, in that sense, I think Batman needs supporting characters, definitely, and those can be female or not... but I don't know if he needs a female "lead" (using my narrow "poster-worthy" definition) of Joker prominence necessarily. 
I'd want to tell a story that's a thematic progression from Begins and Knight but it's own and different story, and then find characters that fit rather than trying to jury rig a story around a character wish list.  Begins is about the psychology of symbols and Knight is about how symbols escalate conflict and require hard choices (be it a one boat or another, one tied up victim or another, big brother cell phone surveillance, or being portrayed as the villain) where "right" is ambiguous or conflicting based on the measure (utilitarian v. moral; one life v. other; useful lie v. hurtful truth; etc) ... so the next step is what?  I don't really know.  If I had to guess it would be about humanity.  Bruce exchanges it for the symbol in Begins and he makes soul wrenching compromises for it in Knight... so the third might be trying to not let the symbol consume and completely warp the necessary human core? 
If that's the case, a female super villain love interest could match that theme because it hits both barrels... the human part that still needs and wants love, but the symbol part which is the only reason the Batman is coming in contact with this crazy person and the large part of his appeal to her.  The weakness of this, of course, is that it's a little too love-centric for a character that stuffed all that down with Rachel and felt real loss there... and, as the story is told, the only reason she gets in and all the other flings don't is because she's a long-time childhood friend that knows him from before.  I suppose you could play it as Bruce becoming, entirely, the Bat therefore it is Batman falling in love with Catwoman / Talia / etc. and not Bruce (and that, ultimately, as finale to the trilogy, Bruce has to "beat" Batman and reign him in for the purposes for which he was intended - to not let the symbol grow malignantly out of control- as with the copycats or mirror in Joker- in his own life)... but that feels like it's been done before? 
The Nolan Batman is such a discrete and rational world I have trouble imagining the organic entry of a new love... and it's story first for me, so I'm skeptical, but I can see a path to it. 
If trying to hit a character checklist, Catwoman is obvious but pretty rote by now.  Vicki Vale is a traditional comic character but comic history doesn't really matter (see: Rachel / Ra's / etc).  I really don't know any character that's a "must see".

Posted by queenfrost_
@Tainted-Cell:  Who the heck is Sofia?
Posted by Midnight Monk

TO me Talia would be the best choice, as much as I like Catwoman I feel she'd ruin the movie if she was added