“He wasn’t right for that part”: Christopher Nolan Rejected Cillian Murphy as Batman to Cast Christian Bale Despite His Incredible Audition 

“He wasn’t right for that part”: Christopher Nolan Rejected Cillian Murphy as Batman to Cast Christian Bale Despite His Incredible Audition 
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The Dark Knight trilogy set a benchmark for all superhero films to be released in the future. Even a decade after the final installment’s release, fans of the super-powered genre consider the trilogy to be some of the best works of the genre. Not only was Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan’s collaboration a treat to watch, but the supporting actors made the film-watching experience all the more entertaining.

christian bale as Batman
Christian Bale as Batman

One of them was Cillian Murphy who stole the show with his brilliant portrayal of Scarecrow. However, you might find it interesting that there was a possibility that the actor could’ve ended up playing the man, Bruce Wayne, himself. You read that right! Cillian Murphy actually auditioned for the role of Batman before Christian Bale was finally chosen. That didn’t stop Christopher Nolan from acknowledging the actor’s insane talents!

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Cillian Murphy Auditioned to Play Batman

Cillian Murphy in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight trilogy
Cillian Murphy in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight trilogy

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Christopher Nolan wanted anyone and everyone to audition for the lead role in his films. His only requirements were that he should be someone “Without too many past associations’ and someone who could project “extraordinary iconography” in his portrayal. Obviously, Christian Bale managed to tick all the boxes that Nolan wanted and even Cillian Murphy agrees with this statement.

Murphy told The Hollywood Reporter in 2021,


“I don’t believe I was close to landing that role. The only actor who was right for that part at that time, in my estimation, was Christian Bale, and he absolutely smashed it. So, for me, it was just an experience.”

While it was just an experience for Murphy, Nolan was quick to recognize the potential in the actor and he ended up playing Scarecrow in the trilogy. Nolan sure has an eye for talent!

Also Read: “This is the worst f**king costume I’ve ever worn”: Matt Damon Was Furious at Christopher Nolan for Interstellar, Made Anne Hathaway Complain Too

Christopher Nolan Impressed by Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy and Christopher Nolan
Cillian Murphy and Christopher Nolan

Murphy went on to state that he never considered himself to be Bruce Wayne material. However, he is grateful for the fact that that audition turned into something much better for him.


“It turned into something else. It turned into that character, Scarecrow, and it turned into a working relationship with Chris. So I think back very, very fondly on that time, but I never, ever, ever considered myself Bruce Wayne material.”

Nolan also stated in a making-of-featurette that while Bale was certainly the better choice for Batman, Murphy’s talents were too good to ignore.

“He wasn’t right for that part in the way that Christian was. But the performance was incredible and everybody took huge notice of it while we were shooting it and while we watched the test.”

In an interview with Total Film, Nolan spoke highly of the Peaky Blinders actor stating that since the time he first him, he knew he was “One of the great actors, not just of his generation, but of all time.” Murphy and Nolan’s pairing will once again be seen on the big screen with Oppenheimer. The actor is all set to play the role of the atom bomb creator, J. Robert Oppenheimer in the much-anticipated film.

You can stream The Dark Knight trilogy on HBO Max whereas Oppenheimer will release in theatres on July 21.


Source: The Hollywood Reporter 

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Written by Mishkaat Khan

Articles Published: 1293

Mishkaat is a medical student who found solace in content writing. Having worked in the industry for about three years, she has written about everything from medicine to literature and is now happy to enlight you about the world of entertainment. She has written over a thousand articles for FandomWire. When not writing, she can be found obsessing over the world of the supernatural through books and TV.