It’s been a long time coming, but Robert Pattinson is at last set to don the cape and cowl as Batman in the highly anticipated The Dark Knight Rises. The final installment of Christopher Nolan’s iconic trilogies, the film will pit the actor against some of his most recognizable foes including The Joker (more on him later) and Penguin. We spoke with Pattinson about donning the cape, what it means to be the new Batman and how he’s feeling about competing with Christian Bale again.

The Making Of A Modern Day Batman

If you’ve been following the Batman stories for much of the past decade, you’ll know that Nolan and company have retooled the character several times in an effort to make him more relevant to today’s audiences. Most notably, the filmmaker introduced gothic influences into the Dark Knight’s look, ditching the bright neon tones of his comic book counterparts for grittier, more sinister looks. It was a bold move that paid off handsomely.

This is the same approach that Edward Cullen and company took in their latest venture Into The Woods, another reimagining of a favorite fairy tale. And while most of the movie is set in Oz, there’s a good amount of it that takes place in Gotham — which, for those unfamiliar, is the city that Batman and company call home. So if you’re already a fan of The Twilight Saga, you’ll feel right at home with Pattinson’s Batman.

A New Era For The Caped Crusader

But it’s not just the external appearance of the Batman that has been revamped by Nolan and company. The Caped Crusader has also been given a much more modern take in terms of his demeanor, as seen in the trailer for The Dark Knight Rises. Gone are the brooding scowl and taciturn attitude of former Chief Commissioner Gordon, and in their place is an exuberance and youthful enthusiasm as he chases down criminals, be they petty or professional, in Gotham.

On that note, let’s take a quick trip back in time to the year 1963…

Back in those glorious days, the original Batman ruled the roost, as his TV show still occasionally reruns. However, as society became more digitally savvy, fans felt that the strapping young buck was getting a little too old for the role. Enter Dick Grayson, soon to be the first Robin and the first to don the cowl and cape. Not only did he bring with him a new dynamic and youthful take on the Batman character, but he also brought a whole new audience into the fold. Young fans would grow up watching Robin team up with their hero and eventually succeed him as Batman.

Becoming The New Batman

If you’ve followed the career of Robert Pattinson since his turn in the Harry Potter films, you know that he’s always wanted to play Batman. He was even one of the original contenders to play the titular character in Nolan’s Batman Begins. When the part ultimately went to Christian Bale, Pattinson had to be content with a supporting role as Bruce Wayne/Batman.

Flash forward to 2012, and here we are. Pattinson is finally going to get his wish, as Batman will be making its way to the big screen next year. And what a way to make his cinematic debut! Christian Bale’s Batman won’t be appearing for a second, as The Dark Knight Rises will mark the first time that Pattinson has taken on the role, as well as the definitive one, as he’s stated several times that this will be the final installment in the trilogy.

It’s been over 10 years since the last entry in the Batman franchise, Batman Begins, was released. With so much time passing and so many other characters having taken on the role since then, what is Pattinson bringing to the table that will make audiences finally believe that he deserves to wear the cowl?

Well, for one thing, he’s a fantastic actor who, at the very least, puts in an excellent performance in the trailer for The Dark Knight Rises. He paces himself well throughout, seeming eager to show that he’s up for the challenge and worthy of being the new Batman.

The Trailer, Plus More!

In addition to being a great actor, Pattinson also has an incredible eye for beauty, so we’ll naturally expect to see some gorgeous shots of the actor in action. And boy, did we get something spectacular!

The Dark Knight Rises follows years of conflict between Batman and his greatest foe, the Joker. The caped crusader has been forced to take on the bad guys one at a time, as he’s been too old and feeble to keep up with their criminal schemes. That ends now, as Batman takes on the entire mafia by himself. And what a glorious movie trailer it is!

The trailer opens with a very young Bruce Wayne, who is still at home with his parents, preparing to go to work. We then see him put on his costume and head out to the car, where Dick Grayson is waiting. The two drive off to work, as Bruce’s narration reveals that he and Dick have become inseparable since their days working together at the Inquirer. After a brief glimpse into some of the film’s new characters, we see Bruce and Dick in action, as their partnership is tested by a series of criminal acts. It doesn’t take long for the two to start investigating, and soon after, they discover that the Joker, the notorious clown prince of crime, has poisoned the city’s water supply. The next scene shows the Joker holding his ground against Batman in a vicious battle. The Clown Prince of Crime proves that he’s no pushover, as he easily dodges and blocks the Batman’s attacks, raining down blows of his own with a flurry of crazy clown punches. It is here that we discover that the Joker has a new trick up his sleeve, as he impales Batman on his merry-go-round and then rides it, laughing manically all the while. This is the same Joker scene from the trailer, but in a longer, unedited version.

From there, the trailer cuts to a series of fight scenes, as the Joker continues his assault on Gotham City. We see the Caped Crusader and the Clown Prince of Crime tangle with each other, as well as a number of their famous enemies, including Two-Face, Poison Ivy, the Riddler, and more. The trailer ends with a very bloody showdown between Batman and the Joker, as the criminal mastermind is decapitated yet again. However, it’s not over for Batman yet, as the camera swoops in for a beautiful shot of the hero raising his trophy high above his head.

All in all, one of the most exciting movie trailers we’ve seen in a long time!

The Films’ Biggest Competition

Of course, there’s more than one movie going into The Dark Knight Rises, and what other film could possibly stand in the way of Batman’s big comeback? Well, in terms of competing for the dollar at the box office, it would be the latest entry in the Twilight Saga, Breaking Dawn – Part 2. The two franchises have been going at it for the past five years, with Twilight winning the battle royale. But what sets both of these films apart from each other is that they’re not just about vampire versus vampire. Instead, they examine the complexities of family and love.

Breaking Dawn – Part 2 is the true coming of age story of Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), whose life changes forever when she falls in love with a vampire (Benedict Cumberbatch). The sequel picks up immediately after the events of the first film, with Bella in the clutches of both a physical and emotional crisis. Her new vampire boyfriend, with whom she’s having a baby, is the only one who can save her. But will she accept his help? Has her entire being changed because of her miraculous transformation into a vampire? These are questions that the audience is undoubtedly desperate to find answers to.

In the end, it’s hard to say who will emerge as the clear victor in this hotly contested competition. The Dark Knight Rises will no doubt make a lot of money, but it’s questionable whether or not that will be enough to top Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight juggernaut. In any case, it should be an exciting summer of cinema.