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Steve Martin and Chevy Chase were considered for Batman

Cover Media logo Cover Media 31/03/2021
Tim Burton looking at the camera © Provided by Cover Media Tim Burton

Steve Martin and Chevy Chase were contenders for the role of the titular superhero in 1989's Batman before Tim Burton signed on to direct the blockbuster and brought Michael Keaton on board.

Actor Robert Wuhl was chatting to The Production Meeting podcast and mentioned that producers Jon Peters and Peter Gruber had considered different talents to star as the Dark Knight.

"You’ve got to remember that the greatest decision in the history of Warner Bros. is giving Tim Burton the Batman franchise," Wuhl, who played reporter Alexander Knox in the iconic comic book movie, reflected.

"You know when Joel Schumacher took over and they went in that crazy direction? That's the way they were thinking to begin with," he went on, revealing: "When I asked (originally) who they were thinking of, they said, 'Either Steve Martin or Chevy Chase'."

Contemplating the mood of the producers at the time, Wuhl remarked: "They were not thinking Tim Burton - they were thinking Adam West, that was their Batman. It wasn't Tim Burton's! You can thank the lord for that!"

Crediting Burton for the film's success, Wuhl said: "It's Tim Burton, the vision of it, the casting of it," before pausing to add that Peters and Gruber did "force Jack Nicholson on Tim," for the part of The Joker.

Nicholson went on to earn a Golden Globe for the role.

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