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Christian Bale will forever be tied to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. But as much as fans may appreciate Bale’s performance as the Gotham hero, he appreciated the role just as much. So much so that he often had his own ideas for a Batman film. But he admitted that if he was at the helm, his Batman story might be a bit bizarre.

Christian Bale once felt like he could’ve been a better Batman

Christian Bale speaking on stage while wearing an all black suit.
Christian Bale | Araya Diaz/Getty Image

Bale is often labeled as one of the greatest actors of his generation by fans and colleagues alike. His winning an Oscar further adds credibility to this belief. But when it came to portraying Batman, the respected actor revealed there might have been more he could’ve done.

“I didn’t quite manage what I hoped I would throughout the trilogy,” Bale once told Yahoo. “Chris did, but my own sense of self is like, ‘I didn’t quite nail it.’”

He compared his performance with Heath Ledger’s as Joker, who Bale felt was more compelling in The Dark Knight.

“Heath turned up, and just kind of completely ruined all my plans,” Bale said. “Because I went, ‘He’s so much more interesting than me and what I’m doing.’”

Christian Bale believed that his idea for a Batman movie would’ve been ‘very bizarre’

Bale has always been very complimentary of Christopher Nolan for his take on Batman. One of the traits Bale admired about Nolan was how in tune with his audience the filmmaker was.

“There are a number of times when I say to him: ‘Are you sure you don’t want me to give you a few other variants? I can do this one. What if later down track you choose to change this part of the story, in that case we need to change the domino effect. I can give you three or four different ways to lay it.’ But he’s like, ‘No, no I know what I want.’ That’s exactly what I need,” Bale once told Collider.

One of the reasons the actor needed this kind of guidance was because he had his own ideas about Batman. But he felt if he was in charge, he would’ve taken the caped crusader to a strange place.

“For me, I love the character so much that if it was left to me, you’d get a very bizarre Batman movie. Like ‘What the hell? Why are we delving so much into his psyche?’ He is a fascinating character and then Chris just has to tell me the points at which it gets tedious and boring and he doesn’t want to see what I’m doing. It’s great to have someone at the helm like Chris,” he shared.

Christian Bale couldn’t do a fourth Batman film without Christopher Nolan


Christian Bale Couldn’t Stand This Part of Playing Batman

With the success of Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, he and Bale were approached for a fourth film. But with Nolan determined not to return to the Batman franchise, Bale refused to reprise his role as the caped crusader.

“Chris had always said to me that if we were fortunate to be able to make three we would stop. ‘Let’s walk away after that,’” he told Toronto Sun. “Then when they inevitably came to us and said, ‘How about a No. 4?’ I said, ‘No. We have to stick to Chris’ dream, which was always to, hopefully, do a trilogy. Let’s not stretch too far and become overindulgent and go for a fourth.’”