Director Joel Schumacher has issued a sincere apology for the awful ‘Batman and Robin’ film he made…
Comic book movies are all the rage these days with several films being released each year by Marvel and DC but that wasn’t the case 20 years ago when the superhero movie industry wasn’t nearly as big as it is today.
So it’s no wonder big budget flops like 1997’s ‘Batman and Robin’ are not only remembered but they live on in infamy because 20 years ago, there wasn’t another superhero project coming out just a few months later to make us all forget the previous one.
There’s no way to sugarcoat it — ‘Batman and Robin’ was terrible.
From George Clooney joining the cast to bat nipples to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s performance as Mr. Freeze to the Batman credit card, it was all quite awful.
Now director Joel Schumacher is taking responsibility for the film and even went as far as issuing an apology in a new interview he conducted with Vice while discussing ‘Batman and Robin’s legacy.
“Look, I apologize,” Schumacher said. “I want to apologize to every fan that was disappointed because I think I owe them that.”
According to Schumacher, he had no intentions of doing another sequel after directing ‘Batman Forever’, which wasn’t an instant classic but not nearly as bad as ‘Batman and Robin’. But Warner Bros. kept after him to do another Batman movie so he eventually signed on for another sequel despite his instincts telling him otherwise.
“I just knew not to do a sequel,” Schumacher said. “If you get lucky, walk away. But everybody at Warner Brothers just expected me to do one. Maybe it was some hubris on my part. I had a batting average of 1,000, so I went from falling down a bit after Lost Boys, to a kind of a genius with The Client, a big blockbuster with Batman Forever, then had great reviews with A Time to Kill, so my batting average was good. I never planned on being, that dreadful quote, “a blockbuster king” because my other films were much smaller and had just found success with the audience and not often with the critics, which is really why we wrote them.
“And then after Batman & Robin, I was scum. It was like I had murdered a baby.”
Schumacher says there were even early plans for a fifth Batman movie in the franchise with Nicholas Cage in talks to star as the Scarecrow, but once reviews started pouring in on ‘Batman and Robin’, he quickly put an axe in that entire idea.
Now 20 years later, Schumacher has kept everything in perspective and he can look back on ‘Batman and Robin’ and give an honest assessment on the film.
“Woody Allen, one of many mentors of mine once said to never read anything about yourself because to believe the good, you would have to believe the bad, and when they hate you, you remember every ugly word to the day that you die. It was great advice, because when I did St. Elmo’s Fire in 1985, we received pages upon pages of reviews from a Xerox machine, and I didn’t get one single good review in the whole of the United States of America. Zero. Afterward, a lot of people still ended up seeing the movie and felt that I didn’t need critical approval. I was never a critic’s darling and that was freeing,” Schumacher said.
“But look, I still apologize.”