8/2/2012 7:48 AM
Now that director Christopher Nolan has completed his trilogy of Batman films with the arrival of "The Dark Knight Rises," the question has naturally come up: what happens next?
After all, just because Nolan has finished his story, that doesn't mean we've seen the last of the Caped Crusader on the big screen. There's no doubt, in fact, that he will be back. Nolan's movies have been an incredibly successful enterprise, and Batman remains the most lucrative screen property in the DC Comics canon (only Superman comes close).
No matter how "The Dark Knight Rises" ends up faring at the box office when all is said and done -- and it does seem that the horrifying events in Colorado two weeks ago will end up having an effect on its total grosses -- it will still be a wildly successful movie for Warner Bros., which has a tremendous interest in keeping Batman in the public eye for years to come. The question is, how does the company make that happen?
Although everyone involved went to great lengths to say that "The Dark Knight Rises" was the end of this story, there was clearly enough left open-ended at the finish of the film to allow several threads to be picked up.
When we see Blake ascend into the Batcave at the end of the movie, the message is quite clear: anyone can carry on the Batman mantle and legacy.