It has been almost 20 years since the beloved Batman Beyond (or Batman of the Future as it was known elsewhere) came off the air. After 3 seasons and 52 episodes the Bruce Timm, Paul Dini and Alan Burnett developed series had cemented itself as one of the pinnacle examples of DC animation, as well as one of the most compelling Batman stories bar none. Though we have never seen a big screen or live action adaptation of the critically-acclaimed series come to fruition, we now have some idea of what one could look like.
Thomas du Crest, a concept artist who hails from the United Kingdom, has published his near-perfect take on what a Batman Beyond movie could look like on the silver screen. Taking his cue from the finale of Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight trilogy, du Crest has imagined a world in which Joseph Gorodn-Levitt's disenfranchised police officer, Robin John Blake, picks up the mantle of Batman from a now retired Bruce Wayne.
"I wanted to play with the idea of a Batman Beyond adaptation set in Christopher Nolan's Batman universe, with [John Blake] as the new Batman as it is suggested at the end of The Dark Knight Rises. Here are some costume explorations, trying to mix Nolan's realistic and practical approach with a more futuristic style."
The concept art does an excellent job of blending NolanVerse visuals with a very different Batman at the centre, and the overall aesthetic should be very familiar to fans of The Dark Knight trilogy. The images portray Blake in the cape-lacking, high-tech, red and black suit as he hangs around the Batcave looking typically mysterious. Du Crest also gives us a good look at what the suit would look like in flight, with the red underarm gliders perfectly realized in live action as Batman chases down a plane that is no doubt harbouring an assortment of criminals.
The final shot of Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises heavily suggests that Blake is destined to take over wearing the pointy-eared cowl, and this concept art shows the perfect way to do it if a follow-up ever happens. Failing that, because let's be honest it is pretty unlikely, if Warner Bros. ever decides to move away from Bruce Wayne and into the futuristic world of Batman Beyond, du Crest should be high on their call list.
Much like Sony has done with Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, it was rumored that their would be a Batman Beyond animated movie coming that would tie into the live-action movies at Warner Bros. We haven't heard about this project since January of this year, though.
Batman Beyond begins in 2039 and follows the adventures of Terry McGinnis, a teenager on the wrong side of the tracks, who is taken under the wing of an elderly and retired Bruce Wane. Fueled by remorse and vengeance, and gifted with a high-tech bat-suit, McGinnis uses all the gadgets and training Bruce can throw at him to take down criminals in the harsh, crime-ridden Neo-Gotham. This exciting glimpse into a potential future Batman movie comes courtesy of Thomas DuCrest on Instagram.