Hero Express: Dark Knight Station – Big Prologue Announcements, Interviews and Possible Spoilers

Welcome to Dark Knight Station, the Hero Express‘s main stop for all the news on The Dark Knight Rises. We’ll keep you up to date on all the biggest bat-news coming straight from Gotham City.

Mind the gap and avoid the shadows; This stop is the Dark Knight Station for December 3rd, 2011.

Official Announcement for the IMAX Prologue – (IGN)

News that a 6-minute prologue of The Dark Knight Rises would play with Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocal at IMAX theatres has been pretty well-known for a while now, with rumours and talk about it going on for months, but now Warner Bros. has cemented it with an official announcement. The full transcript:

“Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Dark Knight Rises” — the epic conclusion to filmmaker Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy — is one of the most anticipated films of 2012, but moviegoers won’t have to wait until next year to see the six-minute opening sequence of the film. The film’s prologue will be unveiled exclusively in select 70mm IMAX® theatres worldwide. The announcement was made today by Dan Fellman, President of Domestic Distribution, and Veronika Kwan-Rubinek, President of International Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures.

The Prologue will be released in North America on December 16, and in the UK on December 21, 2011. Additional international dates vary by territory and will be announced soon.

In making the 2008 blockbuster “The Dark Knight,” Nolan was the first to use IMAX® cameras in a major motion picture release, and, as now, audiences were given an advance look at that film’s prologue months prior to the Summer 2008 opening. Nolan employed the extremely high-resolution cameras even more extensively on “The Dark Knight Rises”—including the film’s prologue—to achieve unprecedented crispness and clarity and a truly immersive experience for the moviegoers.

Christopher Nolan stated, “Our experience on ‘The Dark Knight’ shooting and projecting IMAX 15 perf 65mm/70mm film was inspiring. The immersive quality of the image goes beyond any other filmmaking tool available, and in revisiting Gotham, we were determined to shoot even more of the movie in this unique format. Giving the fans an early look at an IMAX sequence is a great way to draw attention to what I believe will be an incredible way to experience our story when it comes out next summer.””

The prologue is only set to play in select theaters, and the press release includes a list of all the theaters in North America and the UK where it will run, which you can check out at the bottom of the page. Make sure you are somewhere near one of those places when the day comes. I know at the strike of midnight on December 16th I’ll be at Scotiabank Theatre, cape and utility belt ready to go.

A Rumored Breakdown of the IMAX Prologue – (SplashPage)

An anonymous source contacted movie site Rama’s Screen with supposed ‘guaranteed validity’ on both the back story of Bane and a general description of the coming IMAX prologue mentioned above. Now there’s absolutely no reason to believe this is real, other than the assurances of the unknown writer of the e-mail, so who knows if there’s any truth to what follows. That said, there are some pretty big !!Spoilers!! being revealed on the off-chance this isn’t BS. If you still want to read on, here is Bane’s supposed back story:

“Nolan has significantly rewrote the story of Bane from the comics. He is raised by Ra’s al Ghul and his up bringing mirrors that of Bruce Wayne. It’s a mirror of Bruce, except it’s darker and twisted. Bane is trained to be an assassin for the League of Shadows. He kills political figures that are deemed unfit by the LOS. So he is a bit of a Che Guevara/ Jason Bourne type character. A revolutionary and an assassin. He comes to Gotham to start a revolution by revealing the cover up dealing with Harvey Dent and killing the Mayor, among other key political figures.”

And here is the e-mailer’s account of what we’ll see in IMAX theatres in the coming weeks:

“It is one of the assassinations ordered by Ra’s al Ghul. A mind-blowing action sequence set aboard the Hercules plane, involving some innovative camera work ala Inception hallway fight scene. Bane and his mercenaries hijack a military plane transporting a dictator of a country which is in unrest (think Saddam Hussein type figure). He successfully kills the leader, but makes some mistakes along the way and is unable to safely land the plane. Because of the resulting injuries from the accident, he has to undergo complicated surgeries and that is how he winds up with that scar down his neck and the need for the mask to numb the pain.”

I’m really hoping this is all a hoax. I can’t entirely put a finger on why, but something about this alleged prologue doesn’t sit right. It might be that this version could tie the Nolanverse too directly into the real world by working in the current political unrest in the Middle East, or maybe it’s working R’as al Ghul back into the story after he was killed off in Batman Begins. It just doesn’t feel like Batman to me.

Adam Rodriguez Leaves the Cast – (SplashPage)

A while ago the Hero Express had the news that CSI: Miami star Adam Rodriguez was going to play a small, unidentified role in The Dark Knight Rises. Well, now it turns out Rodriguez had to drop the role due to scheduling conflicts with Steven Soderbergh’s new movie, Magic Mike. We still don’t know anything else about the role Rodriguez was set to play, other than it was a pretty small part.

“Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to work on Dark Knight because it directly conflicted with the shooting schedule for Magic Mike,” said Rodriguez. “There was no way around it. I’m sure it would have been an incredible experience, but I know it worked out for the best.”

Like SplashPage mentions, I’m sure Rodriguez wouldn’t step away from a landmark picture like TDKR lightly. For his sake I hope.

Oldman Says Goodbye to Playing Commissioner – (MTV)

Apparently in time for the end of Movember, Gary Oldman hangs up his Gordon-Stache as he finishes shooting TDKR:

“The Gordon mustache is retired,” Oldman confirmed. “They gave me a shadow box, and it has my badge, my glasses and the mustache. He is retired.”

Empire magazine’s recent on-set feature dropped the detail that “The Dark Knight Rises” will take place seven years after the end of its predecessor “The Dark Knight.” This obviously leaves a lot of time out of the story and a lot of changes for the characters, including Gordon. Oldman said that his character has a return to an earlier form for the trilogy’s finale.

“He’s a little reminiscent of the Gordon you see in ‘Batman Begins.’ They’ve tidied up the city, but there’s still work to be done. He’s very world-weary,” Oldman said.

One of the more mysterious cast additions, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as beat cop John Blake, meant an extra man in Gordon’s Gotham PD. Oldman described his time working with Gordon-Levitt as a little distracting, but in a good way. “Someone that talented, I do these scenes with him and you can’t put a pin through an insincere moment,” he said. “It’s wonderful. You come out of character sometimes because … you’re in the scene and you find your head going, ‘Wow. He’s pretty good.’ “

Bale Talks About His Last Run as Bruce Wayne & Batman – (SplashPage)

Christian Bale is wrapping up his last run as the billionaire playboy and Gotham Knight, which may be the best version of the character we’ve ever seen. In this interview Bale gave to Ace Showbiz, Bale discusses what could be a perfect closure to his Bruce Wayne’s story arc:

“How long will you let the pain and loss define your life? Walking around chasing bad guys is very heroic and attracts attention, but at the end it all accounts for, as a means to deal with the pain of a huge loss,” he said of how Bruce has dealt with the death of his parents.

“We agreed that Bruce Wayne is absolutely sincere as Bruce Wayne, and as Batman utterly sincere,” he continued his analysis. “But Bruce Wayne, the playboy, is a pure facade, it’s a lie he has, somehow, to control one side of your soul that’s not really under control. In fact, only Alfred knows who he is. It’s time for Bruce Wayne to face the pain, that has always stirred his life.”

And regarding leaving the role:

“It’s like saying goodbye to an old friend,” he said of filming his final Nolan-directed Batman movie. “When you have the opportunity to be a character so many times, you develop another relationship with him, a more profound one.”

And that’s all for this week at Dark Knight Station! Check below to see where The Dark Knight Rises will be playing in an IMAX theater near you!

Market – Theatre – City
Austin, TX – IMAX Theater Austin – Austin
Boston, MA – Jordan’s IMAX – Natick
Boston, MA – IMAX 3D Theatre in Reading – Reading
Calgary, AB – Scotiabank Theatre Chinook 16 – Calgary
Chantilly, VA/Washington, DC – Udvar-Hazy Center IMAX – Chantilly
Chicago, IL – Navy Pier IMAX Theatre – Chicago
Des Moines, IA – SCI IMAX Dome Theater – Des Moines
Detroit, MI – Henry Ford IMAX – Dearborn
Edmonton, AB – Scotiabank Theatre Edmonton – Edmonton
Harrisburg, PA – Whitaker Center for Science & the Arts – Harrisburg
Houston, TX – Houston Marq*e Stadium 22 + IMAX – Houston
Indianapolis – White River IMAX – Indianapolis
Los Angeles, CA – Irvine Spectrum 20 + IMAX – Irvine
Los Angeles, CA – RAVE 18 + IMAX – Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA – Ontario Palace Stadium 22 + IMAX – Ontario
Los Angeles, CA – Citywalk Stadium 19 with IMAX – Universal City
Madison, WI – Star 18 Fitchburg with IMAX – Fitchburg
Miami, FL – AutoNation IMAX – Fort Lauderdale
Minneapolis, MN – Great Clips IMAX – Apple Valley
Montreal, QC – Cinema Banque Scotia Montreal – Montreal
Nashville,TN – Opry Mills Stadium 20 + IMAX – Nashville
New York, NY – Lincoln Square 13 with IMAX – New York
New York, NY – Palisades IMAX – West Nyack
Omaha, NE – Star Cinema 16 with IMAX – Council Bluffs
Orlando, FL – Pointe Orlando Stadium 20 + IMAX – Orlando
Ottawa, ON – Silvercity Gloucester + IMAX – Gloucester
Palm Springs – Desert IMAX Theatre – Cathedral City
Philadelphia, PA – IMAX & the Tropicana – Atlantic City
Philadelphia, PA – Tuttleman IMAX–Franklin Institute – Philadelphia
Phoenix, AZ – Arizona Mills 25 with IMAX – Tempe
Providence, RI – Providence Place 16 with IMAX – Providence
Quebec City, QC – IMAX Le Theatre At Quebec – Quebec City
Sacramento, CA – Esquire IMAX – Sacramento
San Antonio, TX – IMAX at RiverCenter – San Antonio
San Francisco, CA – Metreon 16 with IMAX & ETX – San Francisco
Seattle, WA – Boeing IMAX–Pacific Science Center – Seattle
Tampa, FL – Museum of Science and Industry – Tampa
Toronto, ON – Coliseum 12 Mississauga + IMAX – Mississauga
Toronto, ON – Scotiabank Theatre Toronto + IMAX – Toronto
Toronto, ON – Colossus 18 Woodbridge + IMAX – Woodbridge-Vaughan
Vancouver, BC – Colossus Langley + IMAX – Langley
Vancouver, BC – Silvercity Riverport 18 + IMAX – Richmond

UK – BFI London – London
UK – National Media Museum IMAX – Bradford
UK – Glasgow Science Centre IMAX Cinema – Glasgow
UK – Odeon Manchester IMAX @ The Printworks – Manchester

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