This is how Christian Bale described his experience of working with the iconic Heath Ledger.
It has been more than a decade since ‘The Dark Knight’ was released, and it is still one of those favourite movies that can be watched multiple times. Of course, it was Heath Ledger’s exceptional performance as The Joker that took everyone’s breath away and people still watch that movie if only to see him in that character.
- Christian Bale talks about his experience of working with Heath Ledger in ‘The Dark Knight’
- Christian Bale on why he worked on ‘The Dark Knight’
Even the ‘Batman’ actor Christian Bale, who starred with Heath Ledger in ‘The Dark Knight’, resonated with this feeling and couldn’t stop praising his acting skills and how he embraced the character of The Joker.
Christian Bale on starring with Heath Ledger
In the interview conducted by Joseph McCabe with Bale and Nola for his book, ‘100 Things Batman fans should know and do before they die’, Christian opened up about working with the iconic Heath Ledger and his time on the sets of ‘The Dark Knight’.
When asked about his experience of working with Heath Ledger, Bale said, “Our first scene was in an interrogation room together, and I saw that he’s a helluva actor who’s completely committed to it and totally gets the tone that Chris [Nolan] is trying to create with this. We’re not going for actors revealing their enjoyment of playing a wacky caricature. We’re treating this as a serious drama. You go into character and you stay in character. I love that. I find that so ridiculous that I love it, and I take that very seriously. Heath was definitely embracing that. When he was in the makeup and the garb, he was in character the whole time, and when he took it off he was absolutely fantastic company to be around”.
He then talks about the fight scene between Batman and Joker, “As you see in the movie, Batman starts beating the Joker and realizes that this is not your ordinary foe. Because the more I beat him, the more he enjoys it. The more I’m giving him satisfaction. Heath was behaving in a very similar fashion. He was kinda egging me on. I was saying, ‘You know what, I really don’t need to actually hit you. It’s going to look just as good if I don’t’. And he’s going, ‘Go on. Go on. Go on’. He was slamming himself around, and there were tiled walls inside of that set which were cracked and dented from him hurling himself into them. His commitment was total”.
Why did Christian Bale say yes to ‘The Dark Knight’ despite not being a comic book fan?
On being asked why Christian said yes to being a part of ‘The Dark Knight’ when he himself is not a huge comic books fan, he said, “Yeah. The only reason I wasn’t [was] I grew up in a household of girls. So there were very few Batman comic books lying around. There [was] mainly Archie. So that’s probably the only reason why I never grew up reading Batman”.
He further added that he liked ‘Batman Begins’, “… and the Joker’s character was simply too brilliant to pass up. I know I’ve mentioned it before, but I would not have accepted Tim Burton’s offer to play the Joker in ‘The Dark Knight’. Because it would be a crime to even approach what Jack Nicholson accomplished in Tim Burton’s world. So I knew how Chris [Nolan] was when he came to me. He’d already put up the table”.
How many times have you watched ‘The Dark Knight’?