Countless Batman fans and pundits have been heavily critical of the casting decisions ever since the Chris Nolan and Christian Bale trilogy ended seven years ago.
Ben Affleck's portrayal of The Dark Knight in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League was widely panned by the DC Universe. He stepped down as director for The Batman, which is slated for a 2021 release.
Affleck was replaced by Twilight star Robert Pattinson, who's also endured plenty of criticism and doubts as a capable actor for The Caped Crusader. Pattinson officially took on the role for the upcoming film that will be directed by Matt Reeves.
Fair or not, Pattinson is going to be compared heavily to Bale, who's been widely regarded as the greatest Batman actor ever. After all, The Dark Knight Rises grossed over $1 billion at the worldwide box office, according to Box Office Mojo.
But Bale has come to the defense of Pattinson, and he's expressed confidence in the latter's ability to successfully portray the beloved superhero. Not only that, but Bale has some words of wisdom to share for Pattinson.
Bale was at the Toronto Film Festival for the premiere of Ford v Ferrari, starring him and Matt Damon. In an interview with Extra TV, Bale advised Pattinson to ignore the critics as he prepares for the monumental role.
"Good for him. Just make it his own," Bale said. "Don't listen to the naysayers. Think about it, everybody protested when Heath (Ledger) was cast as the Joker.Look what an absolutely brilliant performance he gave. Don't listen to those guys...He's a fascinating actor. He's a great choice."
Taking on the role of a major comic book character like Batman is no easy talk. When Michael Keaton left Batman after two films, he was replaced by Val Kilmer in Batman Forever (1995).
However, Kilmer left the franchise and was replaced by George Clooney in Batman & Robin (1997), which was historically panned by critics - leading to the cancellation of Batman Triumphant.
Even if Pattinson doesn't put on a legendary portrayal of Batman like Bale and Keaton did, he should still perform better than the likes of Clooney and Affleck, who weren't exactly suited for the role. Pattinson has giant shoes to fill, but he deserves the full benefit of the doubt until the movie hits the screens in two years.