‘The Flash’: Michael Keaton Admits He Wasn’t Familiar With ‘Batman’ Comics

The original Batman is back. The Flash is scheduled for a 2022 release, and Michael Keaton will reprise his role. DC Comics fans want to know why Ben Affleck will also star alongside Keaton. How can there be two Bruces? Viewers have to wait until the flick hits theaters to find out.

The original Batman star is in a few upcoming projects, including Worth, Dopesick, and Protege. But he confessed something shocking about his Batman days: Keaton didn’t read or watch the comics. DC fans wonder how the actor got into character if he wasn’t familiar with the content.

Michael Keaton The Flash
Michael Keaton | Christopher Polk/Getty Images

Michael Keaton first starred in the 1989 ‘Batman’

He’s Batman! The first installment started Keaton’s road to fame. The actor flew in full force alongside Jack Nicholson as The Joker and Kim Basinger as Vicki Vale. Fans of the original comics saw Gotham City on the big screen for the first time.

The movie’s widespread critical acclaim contributed to its success, later becoming a classic heroic film. The “I’m Batman” line became a famous cinematic reference to Keaton’s original character.

How did Michael Keaton play ‘Batman’ without knowing the comics?

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Keaton discussed his career choices. Directors and producers saw him turn down multiple roles, including the Batman third installment, Batman Forever.

“I was offered a couple of roles that I didn’t do that to most people didn’t make sense,” The Founder actor said. “But if you ask me, if you’re not betting on yourself, that would be worrisome. Back then, if I did have a strategy, I wanted to provide myself the opportunity where I could have some choices. I want to see how wide I can make this [careeer].”

Later, Keaton revealed the secret: “After the first Batman, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen an entire [comic book] movie. I just never got around to it. So you’re talking to a guy who wasn’t in the zeitgeist of that whole world.”

So how did Keaton embrace his role if he wasn’t familiar with this world? He explained that he is still learning about the DC Extended Universe and “respects” it.

“There’s a lot of things I don’t know about,” the Beetlejuice alum said. “And so, I don’t know, I just kind of figured it out, but this was different. What’s really interesting is how much more I got [Batman] when I went back and did him. I get this on a whole other level now…I never looked at it like, ‘Oh, this is just a silly thing.’ It was not a silly thing when I did Batman. But it has become a giant thing, culturally. It’s iconic.”

Keaton’s Batman in ‘The Flash’ will be different

If fans thought they would only see Keaton reprise his role, they thought wrong. Affleck is playing Bruce Wayne and so is Keaton, but the characters will be different. Affleck’s Batman is the famous, wealthy leader of the Justice League and the owner of Wayne Enterprises. Keaton’s hero, however, is the older Wayne from an alternate universe.

Keaton’s role will also forgo the events from Batman Forever and Batman & Robin. Instead, the role is based on events from the original 1989 film and the sequel, Batman Returns.

The Flash concentrates on the titular character, The Flash, otherwise known as Barry Allen; The Flash travels to the past to prevent his mother’s death, causing a ripple in his timeline.

The Flash is scheduled for a Nov. 4, 2022, release.

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