Batman swooped into London last night for the European premiere of The Dark Knight Rises.
And by Batman we actually mean Christian Bale (not in his Batsuit), along with his co-stars Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
Celebrity film fans were out in force for the premiere, and the special black carpet was littered with film, music and Reality TV stars including Guy Richie, Mark Wright, Peaches Geldof, Pixie Lott, Lorraine Kelly and members of The Wanted and JLS. Even Prince Harry showed up to the second premiere location, the IMAX in Waterloo.
Dark Night Rises - red carpet gossip
It was the biggest premiere of the year – Batman was back in The Dark Knight Rises and heat was on the red carpet ready to get all the goss from the film’s stars (and gaze up close at just how very pretty Tom Hardy and Joseph Gordon-Levitt are).
First to come and have a natter with us was none other than legendary Academy Award winning actor Morgan Freeman, who plays weapons expert Lucius Fox in the film trilogy.
The 75-year-old acting legend told us about his recent run in with Britain’s Got Talent super-pooch Pudsey the Dog on US chat show The Jay Leno Show.
He said: “That dog is really something. I’ve worked with a lot of dogs before and there are some of them that I could have shot but this a very bright little dog. I’d work with him.”
When we tweeted Pudsey (yep, that’s right he has own account @OfficialPudsey) to let him know Hollywood royalty was singing his praises, the pup replied: “Is Morgan Freeman really producing The Pawshank Redemption for me? #oscarnomplease”. He’s doing what he can, Pudz.
Next to chat to us was the handsome-as-can-be Tom Hardy, The Dark Knight Rises’ baddy Bane, who spends most of the film topless but sadly had his lovely face covered by a scary mask.
He told us how he packed on 30 pounds of muscle for the flick. He said: “[I did] No cardio, let your liver go, eat as much food as possible and lift heavy weights. Get fat! I have a big, fat neck in the film.”
Joseph Gordon-Levitt: Thrilled to join the party
The equally handsome Joseph Gordon Levitt, who plays a cop in the movie, hinted that he’d love to make the step-up to superhero in the next film.
He said: “Every kid runs around with a cape when they are kids and dreams of being a superhero so absolutely I’d be interested in something. But my part in this film is great, I was so thrilled to join the cast – even if I was late to the party. I did get jealous of Christian though – he looked so badass in the costume.”
Then the very beautiful Anne Hathaway, wearing a very beautiful gold Gucci dress, sauntered over for a chat. But despite donning the iconic skin-tight Catwoman costume in the film the newly pixie-cropped actress didn’t seem happy when reporters asked her anything to do with her sexy latex look. When one dared to ask if she felt comfortable in the costume, she pursed her lips before replying with a dismissive - “That’s such a funny question”.
She told heat: “I think it speaks to the wonder of Chris Nolan [the director] that I really didn’t feel the pressure [of playing such an iconic role]…until I started speaking to the press!
“When I was [on set] I just had to be Chris’ Selena not anybody else’s [Catwoman]. I just had to get really strong and learn how to fight.”
Unfortunately Batman himself, Christian Bale, was not in the best mood at the premiere – refusing to do any press except a short televised interview with Alex Zane.
In your face Batman!
So although heat failed to get a chat with Hollywood A-lister Christian we did chat to (maybe not quite as famous) Mark Wright, Oritse from JLS and Keith Lemon. In your face Batman.
While eyeing up Marion Cottilard as she stood nearby, Mark told us: “There are a lot of beautiful ladies here tonight. I’m just here to see the film but yes, there are some very lovely ladies I’d love to have a chat with. I can’t choose my favourite female superhero – they are super, super sexy.”
Oritse said: “I love Batman. I had a cape when I was I was little but it wasn’t black, it was gold. My superpower would be the obvious, flying.
“Anne Hathaway is so so hot. I can’t even look, it’s crazy. The Catwoman outfit is probably the best outfit evented for ladies ever. Every woman should own a Catwoman costume. I’m trying to sort it out.”
Keith Lemon told us: “Anne looks good in her Catwoman suit but she’s cut all her hair off [now]. That’s a bit shocking innit but she looks nice. For snog, marry, avoid…I’d marry Wonder Woman. Snog Black Widow … so sorry Anne. She’s got those claws, hasn’t she? Oh wait a minute from the side, she’s got side boob! Side boob! I like side boob!”
heat’s verdict on The Dark Knight Rises
The plot: For his final, trilogy-ending Batman picture, Christopher Nolan pushes events eight years beyond The Dark Knight. Thanks to a major empowerment of law enforcement, organised crime is in abeyance, and both Bruce Wayne (Bale) and his caped alter ego have retired from public life. But when the psychotic Bane (Hardy) unleashes war on Gotham, Batman returns to the fray, meanwhile tangling with cat burglar Selina Kyle (Hathaway), romancing Wayne Industries board member Miranda Tate (Marion Cotillard) and inspiring plucky cop John Blake (Gordon-Levitt), who grew up in an orphanage funded by Wayne’s charitable foundation.
What's right with it? The movie starts with a bang via a spectacular aerial segment establishing Bane as a highly resourceful foe, and later hits warp speed again after he takes control of Gotham, blowing up its bridges, blocking its tunnels, and unleashing underclass resentment against the city’s pampered elites. It’s astonishing to see this cautionary tale about the perils of widening inequality unfold within a mega-budget blockbuster. But it’s not all heavy weather: Hathaway is a delight as the ambiguous Catwoman, and Gordon-Levitt gives the franchise some much-needed heart as the orphaned boy who grew up to be a hero.
What’s wrong with it? After the whiz-bang curtain raiser, the first hour seems unnecessarily complicated, talky and weighed down by the burden of respecting the trilogy’s overall story arc. Following fan complaints at teaser footage, the respirator-masked Bane is now comprehensible, but his voice somehow doesn’t feel connected to the actor. And the film sure is long.
Verdict: Hot on the heels of the mind-spinning Inception, Nolan once again proves himself as the writer-director most capable of taking the Hollywood blockbuster into surprising and audacious directions. You’d be crazy to miss it. Four stars - Charles Gant