“That’s a stupid idea”: Not Michael Keaton, Tim Burton Wanted Robert De Niro’s ‘Goodfellas’ Co-Star as Batman Who Discarded Movie for Being ‘Too Edgy’

Not Michael Keaton, Tim Burton Wanted Robert De Niro's 'Goodfellas' Co-Star as Batman Who Discarded Movie for Being 'Too Edgy'
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Long before Michael Keaton put on the cape of the Caped Crusader, Tim Burton imagined the Goodfellas star Ray Liotta as the legendary superhero. However, due to a lack of foresight, Liotta turned down the role, considering it to be “stupid”. Many years later, he deeply regrets this decision. Despite this, the actor, who sadly passed away this last year, didn’t require Batman fame to leave his lasting mark on the industry. He expressed a desire to approach things differently had he been aware of how the franchise would ultimately unfold.


According to an interview featured in the Irish News, the actor provides a detailed glimpse into the intricacies of the behind-the-scenes dynamics that unfolded during the casting of Batman, shedding light on his personal journey that eventually led him to not get involved with the iconic role.

Michael Keaton in and as Tim Burton's Batman
Michael Keaton in and as Tim Burton’s Batman

Also Read:“All you gotta do is tell me no, baby”: Batman Star Michael Keaton Made Jack Nicholson’s Jaw Drop After Trolling His Haters During an Award Show


Tim Burton Wanted Ray Liotta as Batman

In a twist of fate, even though Michael Keaton embodied Batman flawlessly, he wasn’t the initial preference. Director Tim Burton‘s original muse was Ray Liotta, and so, on a seemingly random Tuesday, he extended his offer to the actor. Liotta recounts that Burton was on a quest for authenticity and a distinct edge, which led him to believe that Liotta’s persona could impeccably fit the bill. He said,

“When I did my first movie, Tim Burton was getting ready to do Batman and he was interested in me because he wanted it to be edgy and real,”

Tim Burton
Tim Burton

Back in the day, superheroes were a rare sight. Batman stepped up as one of the trailblazers, igniting a trend that spiraled into a frenzy today. Thanks to Batman, fans now relish colossal clashes between superheroes and a diverse lineup of characters. Had Liotta embraced the role, he might have been the very pioneer. Yet, destiny leaned toward Michael Keaton as the director’s choice, catapulting the movie into a realm of success that ushered the star into unfathomable stardom.

Also Read:“The girl gets seduced”: Italian Actress Monica Bellucci’s Husband Didn’t Make Her Feel Sexy Like Other Photographers, Stopped Working With Him As It Lacked Seduction


Ray Liotta Rejected Batman Thinking It Was “Stupid”

However, in hindsight, the actor regrets letting the opportunity he should have seized the very moment, go. During that era, the concept of superhero movies hadn’t yet provided a yardstick to measure the immense gains in store, leading him to pass up the opportunity. He said,

“I thought, ‘Batman? That’s a stupid idea’, even though he’d had just done one of my favourite movies of all time, Beetlejuice. So yes, I regret not auditioning for that.

Something Wild, Ray Liotta
Ray Liotta in Something Wild

Thus, the actor chose to decline the meeting, which could have potentially changed the actor’s life, with the director, who held high hopes of securing the actor’s involvement in the film. On a separate occasion he said,

“There were never any superhero movies then. That was pretty much the first one,–I said, ‘Are you f—— nuts? Batman?!” I’m going, ‘No, that’s stupid.’ Who was stupid? I was stupid because I didn’t know.”

Fast forward to now, superhero movies are all the rage. Yet, the actor now carries a regret for not boarding the hype train when the opportunity presented itself, solely because the notion of embarking on such a project appeared rather foolish to him.


Also Read:“I carried on like a baby”: Michael Keaton Faced Tom Cruise’s Jack Reacher Problem Before Tim Burton Convinced Angry Producer for $411M Batman Blockbuster

Batman is currently streaming on Max.

Source: Irish News


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Written by Sampurna Banerjee

Articles Published: 876

Sampurna Banerjee, an ardent enthusiast of pop culture and movies, pours her passion into her role as a writer for FandomWire. With a penchant for Marvel, DC, and sitcoms, she has contributed over 400 articles, staying up-to-date to the entertainment industry's latest buzz. Moreover, she's penned over 300 articles for Animated Times and shared her work across several Instagram pages. Currently she is pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Calcutta University.