The Batman trailer debuted at this weekend’s DC FanDome, and its dark storyline has many fans hoping the movie will be R-rated. Directed by Matt Reeves, the movie is set in a much more grounded standalone universe with no connections to the DCEU. As seen in the trailer, Paul Dano’s Riddler is introduced as a sadistic serial killer, leaving behind his signature riddles at the crime scenes where he leaves his victims. Featuring perhaps the darkest theatrical Batman story yet, the footage has also led to widespread fan discussion about the movie’s potential R rating.
“The Batman will be a gritty character study about Bruce Wayne’s trauma and psyche. It should be rated R. I really hope it’s rated R,” said one fan on Twitter. “All I’m sayin is The Batman better be rated R or it won’t be the movie we deserve,” echoes another tweet.
Meanwhile, other fans just want to see Pattinson’s Batman wail on the bad guys until they’re almost dead. “Wouldn’t it be amazing if The Batman was rated R. I want to see him beat people near death,” another fan writes.
If The Batman is R-rated, it would be the first theatrical movie about the caped crusader to have that distinction. Even The Dark Knight, which also had a dark, grounded story and pushed the limits with a murderous Joker, was rated PG-13. Given the popularity of the Batman character with younger fans as well as older fans, it’s certainly easy to understand why none of the movies about him in the past have ever gotten an R rating.
However, the immense success of other R-rated DC movies in recent years would seemingly increase the odds of The Batman getting one as well. While Suicide Squad brought in mixed reviews, it grossed hundreds of millions of dollars in ticket sales and was one of the highest-grossing movies of 2016. Last year, Batman’s own arch-nemesis found even greater success when Joker was released in theaters. Not only did the movie earn Joaquin Phoenix an Oscar for the titular role, it would also surpass one billion dollars at the box office, making it the only R-rated movie to do so.
Fans will still have other versions of Batman to look forward to seeing as well. It has been confirmed that The Flash movie will feature both Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton reprising their respective Batman roles, with the former playing the part for the very last time. Meanwhile, Michael Keaton’s comeback as the Dark Knight is reportedly the start of utilizing the character in other superhero movie projects as well, having the original big screen Batman serving as the Nick Fury of the DCEU.
The Batman is set to release in theaters on Oct. 1, 2021. Featuring Robert Pattinson in the lead role, the movie also stars Paul Dano, Zoe Kravitz, Jeffrey Wright, Andy Serkis, and Colin Farrell. As there has already been a tremendously positive fan response to the teaser trailer at DC FanDome, the movie is likely to be very successful upon its release, whether it’s PG-13 or R-rated. You can check out some of the fan reactions below.