Now that the press junkets and interviews with the cast and crew of The Dark Knight Rises have begun, Christopher Nolan and company are finally beginning to give more details and insight into the production of what is likely the most anticipated film of the year. And one of the most revealing and interesting exchanges of this first round of Dark Knight Rises PR is the fact that the template for the film’s script was based upon a classic Charles Dickens novel.
That’s right—apparently, Jonathan Nolan’s original The Dark Knight Rises script (which was 400 pages, by the way; that roughly equates to a six and a half hour film), based much of his screenplay upon Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities. This isn’t entirely surprising, as the 1859 novel is concerned disparity between the lives of French peasants and the reigning aristocracy in the days leading up to the French revolution; trailers for The Dark Knight Rises have indicated that at least part of the film seems concerned with the economic strife within Gotham City, and a subsequent riot/ rebellion that takes place.
Nolan broke it down as follows:
“When Jonah showed me his first draft of his screenplay, it was 400 pages long or something. It had all this crazy stuff in it. As part of a primer when he handed it to me, he said, ‘You’ve got to think of ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ which, of course, you’ve read.’ I said, ‘Absolutely.’ I read the script and was a little baffled by a few things and realized that I’d never read ‘A Tale of Two Cities’. It was just one of those things that I thought I had done. Then I got it, read it and absolutely loved it and got completely what he was talking about… When I did my draft on the script, it was all about ‘A Tale of Two Cities’.”
And the Wikipedia page for A Tale of Two Cities will begin overload in 5…4…3…2…1…
Surprisingly, Jonathan Nolan states that he, his brother, and co-writer David Goyer were not inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement:
“Chris and David started developing the story in 2008 right after the second film came out. Before the recession. Before Occupy Wall Street or any of that. Rather than being influenced by that, I was looking to old good books and good movies. Good literature for inspiration… What I always felt like we needed to do in a third film was, for lack of a better term, go there. All of these films have threatened to turn Gotham inside out and to collapse it on itself. None of them have actually achieved that until this film. ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ was, to me, one of the most harrowing portrait of a relatable, recognizable civilization that completely folded to pieces with the terrors in Paris in France in that period. It’s hard to imagine that things can go that badly wrong.”
So Bat-fans, consider this you cue to begin parsing every word of A Tale of Two Cities for possible clues and spoilers as to how the film ends. The Dark Knight Rises will be released on July 20, 2012.
What do you think of The Dark Knight Rises news?