The mind behind The Batman, Matt Reeves, has revealed how his version of the caped crusader was inspired by the late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, pointing to the grunge icon’s struggles with drug addiction and mental health issues.
In a new interview with Esquire, Reeves explained that he was drawn to Nirvana and Cobain early on in the film’s production, and was inspired by the bleak Nevermind track, ‘Something In The Way’, when devising his adaptation of the titular protagonist. The track had such an impact on the tone of the character that it was used in the first trailer for the film.
Reeves said the themes of the song helped to establish Batman’s character. He revealed: “When I considered, ‘How do you do Bruce Wayne in a way that hasn’t been seen before?’ I started thinking, ‘What if some tragedy happened (ie: Wayne sees his parents murdered) and this guy becomes so reclusive, we don’t know what he’s doing? Is this guy some kind of wayward, reckless, drug addict?'”.
Reeves posited: “And the truth is that he is a kind of drug addict. His drug is his addiction to this drive for revenge. He’s like a Batman Kurt Cobain.”
In the lengthy interview, the auteur also mentioned Gus Van Sant’s 2005 outing Last Days, the fictional retelling of the period that led up to Cobain’s suicide in 1994. He explained that The Batman features a nod to the film by way of a shot of amps stacked up in a storage room – so keep an eye out for this Easter Egg.
Taking his cues from how Last Days portrayed Cobain and his home, Reeves said that The Batman shows Wayne Manor in a state of disrepair. He expressed: “(Bruce Wayne) doesn’t care about any of the trappings of being a (millionaire) Wayne at this point.”
The Batman is scheduled for release in theatres on March 4th. It will be Robert Pattinson’s debut as Batman, who stars alongside Paul Dano as The Riddler, Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Andy Serkis as Alfred Pennyworth and Colin Farrell as The Penguin. In what is set to be one of the most capers of the year, we eagerly await more news.
Watch the trailer for The Batman below.