March 28, 2014 | 5:07 p.m.
Lorenzo Semple Jr., creator of the classic Adam West-starring “Batman” television series, has died. The prolific screenwriter served as scribe for scores of films and TV series, including Dino De Laurentiis’ 1976 “King Kong,” the Warren Beatty-starring thriller “The Parallax View,” Sydney Pollack’s “Three Days of the Condor,” the 1980 cult darling “Flash Gordon” and the James Bond movie “Never Say Never Again,” among other projects. Semple died Friday at his home in Brentwood of natural causes. Born March 27, 1923, Semple celebrated his 91st birthday Thursday. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Joyce; daughters Maria and Johanna; son Lorenzo; and six grandchildren. In a 2010 interview with Hero Complex contributor Susan King, Semple recalled being approached by producer William Dozier to develop an ABC television series based on the “Batman” comic book. “I got a cable […]
March 27, 2014 | 11:44 a.m.
Five iconic Batman characters have received their own posters for Fox’s upcoming TV series “Gotham,” based on the origins of Caped Crusader’s longtime ally and friend, Commissioner James Gordon. The Batman prequel series is helmed by writer and executive producer Bruno Heller, the creative mind behind “The Mentalist” and “Rome,” and stars Ben McKenzie, known for roles in “Southland” and “The O.C.,” as Jim Gordon, the tireless Gotham City Police detective. The new posters, released this week via social media, feature McKenzie and four other key characters, including Selina Kyle, an unpredictable street thief and pickpocket who eventually becomes Catwoman, portrayed by Camren Bicondova; tough ex-marine and Wayne Manor butler Alfred Pennyworth, played by Sean Pertwee; Oswald Cobblepot, an orphaned outcast who eventually becomes the gentleman villain the Penguin, played by Robin Lord Taylor; and Gordon’s partner and mentor Det. […]
March 27, 2014 | 5:00 a.m.
Sunday will mark 75 years since Batman first appeared in “Detective Comics” No. 27, and if you thought DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. were going to let that go unmarked, then you’re crazy enough for Arkham Asylum. Today marks the beginning of brawling billionaire Bruce Wayne’s yearlong diamond jubilee, with the launch of the anniversary celebration’s online hub, www.Batman75.com, and the release of a commemorative logo that will feature on many DC comics and Warner Bros. products. And, Gothamites, July 23 is Batman Day: There will be celebrations at comic shops, bookstores and libraries, complete with a free Caped Crusader comic special to the occasion. The months ahead also bring the “Batman Eternal” weekly comics series, the first-ever home video release of the ’60s “Batman” television series starring Adam West, convention events, a 25th anniversary edition DVD of Tim Burton’s […]
March 10, 2014 | 12:30 p.m.
“Batman: Zero Year” is writer Scott Snyder’s and artist Greg Capullo’s ambitious 11-part comics event exploring Bruce Wayne’s beginnings as the Caped Crusader in DC Comics’ New 52. Snyder is joining Hero Complex each month for an exclusive preview of the next issue and conversation about the story so far. Part 8 of the saga arrives Wednesday with “Batman” No. 29. Scott Snyder wants you to feel young Bruce Wayne’s pain. “We want you to really hurt,” he says of his and Greg Capullo’s version of the murders of Martha and Thomas Wayne in Crime Alley. Their take on that pivotal moment arrives Wednesday in the 40-page “Batman” No. 29. After jumping into the future of “Batman Eternal” last month with the “spoiler” (well, make that Spoiler) issue No. 28 — where the whip-smart, crafty and determined young Gothamite Harper […]
March 04, 2014 | 6:48 p.m.
Batman is getting a next-gen makeover. “Batman: Arkham Knight” will be coming to the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC later this year, the fourth console edition of the popular “Arkham” series and the third to be overseen by London’s Rocksteady Studios. According to a Warner Bros. Interactive release, the new game will serve as the “conclusion” of the “Arkham” series. Regular Batman super villains will return, as the Caped Crusader is forced to hold off a threat to Gotham spearheaded by the Scarecrow. Penguin, Two-Face and Harley Quinn are also said to be featured in the game. The upcoming title will be the first “Arkham” game to feature a playable Batmobile. A new trailer — watch it above — shows off the car briefly; the clip largely centers on Thomas Wayne’s will, a testament that seems to foreshadow Bruce’s […]
March 04, 2014 | 11:06 a.m.
Fox’s Batman prequel series “Gotham” has cast two major characters — Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle, the young people who eventually become Batman and Catwoman. David Mazouz, 14, will play a preteen Bruce Wayne who lives a solitary life after his wealthy parents are murdered. “Serious and soulful, young Bruce relies on the guidance and protection of Alfred Pennyworth and James Gordon,” his official character description reads. Mazouz is best known for his role as an autistic but gifted boy in the Kiefer Sutherland-starring Fox series “Touch.” His “Gotham” character Bruce Wayne, of course, eventually becomes Batman in DC Comics lore, but the series is focused on the origin of Gordon, Fox notes, not the origin of Batman. Acting newcomer Camren Bicondova will play Selina Kyle, the girl who eventually becomes Catwoman, but in “Gotham” Selina is a teenaged orphan who […]
March 03, 2014 | 4:57 p.m.
The untitled “Man of Steel” sequel hasn’t yet gone into production, and it’s already the most controversial movie in fandom. Chalk that up to director Zack Snyder’s somewhat unconventional casting choices. First, comics stalwarts expressed surprise and skepticism in August with the revelation that Ben Affleck would inherit the cape and cowl from actor Christian Bale, taking on the role of Batman opposite Henry Cavill’s Superman in Snyder’s much-anticipated superhero sequel, the follow-up to his 2013 blockbuster that grossed more than $668 million at the worldwide box office. Then came the announcement that Israeli actress Gal Gadot, best known for her work in the “Fast & Furious” films, would play Diana Prince/Wonder Woman in the movie, and the uproar started anew. Just last month, fresh fandemonium was heaped upon the movie with the announcement that boyish “Social Network” star Jesse […]
Feb. 19, 2014 | 12:10 p.m.
The cast of “Gotham” is coming together, with Jada Pinkett Smith the most recent addition to Fox’s upcoming Batman series. The one-hour drama, from Warner Bros. Television, focuses on the origins of Batman’s police department ally, Commissioner James Gordon, and the villains who made Batman’s hometown famous. Pinkett Smith will play Fish Mooney — an original character you won’t find in the comics. Fish Mooney is described as “a sadistic gangster boss and nightclub owner” and will be a series regular. “Fish Mooney’s got the street smarts and almost extra-sensory abilities to read people like an open book,” her official character description reads. “Imposing and hotheaded, she’s not one to be crossed.” Pinkett Smith joins a cast that includes Ben McKenzie, known for roles in “Southland” and “The O.C.,” as Jim Gordon; Robin Lord Taylor (“Another Earth,” “Accepted”) as Oswald […]
Feb. 11, 2014 | 11:51 a.m.
Alfred Pennyworth, the Penguin and more classic Batman characters have been cast in Fox’s upcoming series “Gotham.” The one-hour drama, from Warner Bros. Television, focuses on the origins of Batman’s ally, Commissioner James Gordon and the villains who made Batman’s hometown famous. Actor Ben McKenzie, known for roles in “Southland” and “The O.C.,” will star as Jim Gordon, Warner Bros. announced earlier this month, and Robin Lord Taylor, Zabryna Guevara, Sean Pertwee and Erin Richards are now joining the cast. Taylor (“Another Earth,” “Accepted”) has been cast as Oswald Cobblepot, the orphaned outcast who eventually becomes the gentleman villain the Penguin. Zombie fans may recognize Taylor from his guest appearance as Sam in an episode of “The Walking Dead” last season. In “Gotham,” Taylor’s character is described as having the brains of a chess grandmaster and the morals of a […]
Feb. 10, 2014 | 1:10 p.m.
“Batman: Zero Year” is writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo’s ambitious 11-part comics event exploring Bruce Wayne’s beginnings as the Caped Crusader in DC Comics’ New 52. Snyder is joining Hero Complex each month for an exclusive preview of the next issue and conversation about the story so far. The saga takes a break this month with “Batman” No. 28, a jump-ahead “spoilers” issue that looks into the future of “Batman: Eternal.” It arrives Wednesday. The Riddler seems to have Batman all figured out. In last month’s “Batman” No. 27, Part 7 of “Zero Year,” the criminally clever Mr. Nygma had Gotham police a step ahead of the vigilante, and appeared at the end to taunt him in a life-or-death situation for not being much of a detective. And what better time for a villain to tease his grand […]