James Bond star spectacularly 'failed' Batman audition after insult

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In the 1980s, Tim Burton was tasked with bringing Batman to the big screen. The director – who was best known for releasing horror fantasy epics Edward Scissorhands and Beetlejuice – began his quest by finding the perfect actor to take on the role. The most recent iteration of the Dark Knight at the time was Adam West, and Burton wanted to change things up drastically. Eventually, his search took him to an audition with Pierce Brosnan.

Brosnan is now, of course, immensely famous for playing the fifth iteration of James Bond.

He joined the iconic spy franchise in 1995’s GoldenEye, replacing Timothy Dalton in the process. He retained the role throughout four films, ending with 2002’s Die Another Day.

Long before he had become the tuxedo-clad hero, however, he was looking at taking on other notable roles. But when he was faced with Burton at the audition, he ruined his chance of portraying the DC Comics legend.

Brosnan was recently interviewed by Jimmy Fallon to promote his new movie, Black Adam, where he plays the mystical Doctor Fate. He recalled: “I went up for Batman way back in the day when Tim Burton was doing it. Obviously I didn’t get the job!”

Burton eventually hired American star Michael Keaton to play Bruce Wayne in 1989’s Batman. Three years later, in 1992, he played the hero for the second time in Batman Returns.

Brosnan recalled how it wasn’t a surprise he didn’t get the job, however, as he had messed up the audition. He laughed: “I remember saying something stupid to Tim Burton. I said, you know, I can’t understand any man who would wear his underpants outside his trousers,” referencing Batman’s classic Adam West look.

Still, the Irish actor revealed he was not bitter about being passed over for the iconic role.

He added: “But there you go. The best man got the job and, you know, Doctor Fate and I were meant to meet on the same page I think.”

READ MORE: Black Adam’s Dwayne Johnson ‘confirms’ Superman

Doctor Fate is Brosnan’s first superhero role of his career, and it’s an interesting one. In Black Adam, Doctor Fate is a mediator between the titular antihero and the heroes of the world who are fighting against him.

He has a strong relationship with Hawkman, and doesn’t want to see Black Adam hurt anyone. And it was these nuances that interested Brosnan in the role in the first place. But it was Fate’s marvellous chrome helmet that really wowed him during filming.

Speaking in a new interview he said of the headgear: “It was held in great reverence. I cherished it and I would look after it, and I would protect it. It was never dropped. It was beautifully made. There’s only one of them.”

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Brosnan cheekily added: “Hopefully it’ll show up on my doorstep one day. I did ask for it. I don’t know how much it cost, but it cost quite a bit of money to make the helmet.” (Via Screencrush)

Unfortunately, the rest of Doctor Fate’s costume was a complete fabrication, brought to life entirely through CGI. A detail Brosnan was not enthralled by during the shoot.

He told Fallon: “You’re standing there in a motion capture suit, which is the most inelegant and humorous thing to wear. Ping-pong balls, grey tights… you’ve got to have a sense of humour.”

Tights aside, Black Adam is due to be a monumental turning point for the DC Universe, especially considering Dwayne Johnson – the actor behind Black Adam – recently teased the return of Superman.

While speaking on the Jake’s Takes YouTube channel, Johnson revealed: “I was also listening to the fans at the same time. Where you have Black Adam, we will create Black Adam for him to be the most powerful and unstoppable force on this planet.”

With a knowing smile, he added: “The most powerful and unstoppable in the entire universe has been on the sidelines for too long.”

There is no doubt he was speaking about Henry Cavill’s Superman, who has not been in a DC movie since 2017, so all signs point to the British star returning to play the hero in the coming weeks.

Black Adam hits cinemas on October 21.

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