The Interwebs are alive this morning with chatter about Robin Williams possibly appearing as Hugo Strange in the third Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises. It all started when Batman News noticed a tweet from Jett over at BatmanOnFilm that simply said, "RW as Strange? Hmm…" Jett has mentioned Robin Williams before on both his BOF message board and Facebook page.
To our ear this seems unlikely for two significant reasons:
1. Both Bane and Catwoman have been formally announced, yet no mention has been made about Hugo Strange. Recall that Tom Hardy was rumored to have been hired to play Strange, but ended up in the role of Bane instead, proving that the rumors of Strange were merely that. While this in and of itself is hardly conclusive, there's point number two to consider…and this we believe is more significant…
2. Given the sort of filmmaker that Chris Nolan is, we think it unlikely that he would introduce three nemesis for Batman in what the filmmaker has announced will be his final film. It would dilute the opportunity to develop and showcase the villains sufficiently in the context of the narrative (two villains is enough of a task to manage—it was barely managed in The Dark Knight with both The Joker and Two Face). The Caped Crusader (and Nolan) will have their hands full contending with Bane and Catwoman. We don't see Nolan doing a villain ensemble dance in his final film. Similarly, we can't see him having a Hugo Strange cameo for its own sake in this film with Robin Williams. Unless it was somehow pivotal, it would seem like the worst example of stunt casting, in our opinion. Moreover, there would be little point in introducing and developing such a character in any substantive way, unless another film is being planned…
…which, of course, is always possible if The Dark Knight Rises makes stupid lucre at the box office (which it probably will).
Williams is no stranger to either Christopher Nolan or the Batman franchise. He played the antagonist opposite Al Pacino in Christopher Nolan's Insomnia…and did a fine job.
Many will also remember that he was on the books to play both Joker and Riddler in previous film incarnations of Batman, and was reported as saying: "The Batman films have screwed me twice before: years ago they offered me The Joker and then gave it to Jack Nicholson, then they offered me The Riddler and gave it to Jim Carrey."
Speaking of the Nolan films, Williams has said: "I would do Batman in a second, playing anyone."
Of course, anything is possible — and Williams would be an interesting choice for this role — but we're inclined to call BS on the rumor at this point.
What do you think? Robin Williams as Hugo Strange? Good idea or bad, regardless of what happens?