Audiences love to debate the best Batman, partly because we’ve had Michael Keaton, Christian Bale, George Clooney, Val Kilmer, Ben Affleck, and now Robert Pattinson giving six very different iterations over the last three decades and four different franchise iterations. Well, Josh Brolin could have been on that list.
“That was interesting to me,” Brolin said. “That was his decision, that wasn’t my decision.”
The opportunity came about before “Deadpool 2,” which was released in 2018, and Brolin was pitched to play a different take on Batman entirely. “It would have been the older, the more raspy, for lack of a better word…” Brolin said. “Honestly, that would have been a fun deal. And maybe I’ll do it when I’m 80.”
The “Dune” actor added that he “liked those odds” between a role that is “set up to not work at all or to work flyingly” and take risks with projects. “I’m like, ‘Am I the guy who is going to make it all fail?’” Brolin continued.
And Brolin even weighed in on Clooney’s divisive former Bruce Wayne: “By the way, who I didn’t think was bad, I talked to Clooney, who still is joking about it and it wasn’t his fault,” Brolin said. “He loves a good nipple joke and that was all [director] Joel [Schumacher]. He didn’t do anything wrong.”
Affleck played Gotham’s Dark Knight in Synder’s “Batman v. Superman” in 2016, followed by “Justice League” the next year. Brolin previously weighed in on the controversy surrounding Affleck’s Batman, telling Empire Magazine (via Comic Book Movie) at the time that he had “never seen such a global reaction” to a casting choice.
“I would not want to be him right now,” Brolin said in 2018. “The reaction becomes so personal. It’s like, ‘Fuck this guy, I wish he was dead.’ And you’re like, ‘What? Dude, seriously? This guy is just working like you are. He’s doing the same thing you are. He’s trying to make the best choices he can.’…I want him to kick ass and I want everyone to love it and kind of eat their words.”
Batman wasn’t the only role that Brolin almost brought to the big screen: Before famously playing Thanos in “Avengers: Infinity War,” Brolin was in the running against other MCU star for “Jurassic World.”
“With all respect to Steven [Spielberg], it just didn’t…I could not picture me doing it. I could not picture me being that guy,” Brolin said on Happy Sad Confused. “And I am very, very happy based on my decision of what Chris [Pratt] does with it. I think Chris is the right guy…I think I knew from a big picture standpoint that somebody else would do a much better job than me.”
Josh Brolin nearly was Batman in @ZackSnyder’s universe. Some day as that grizzled older Frank Miller Dark Knight? I see it.
— Josh Horowitz (@joshuahorowitz) April 13, 2022