Gotham City is filled to the brim with iconic villains. So, some people were surprised to hear that Bane, a relatively obscure character in Batman's world, would get a starring role in "The Dark Knight Rises."
Sure, Catwoman (played by Anne "Meow" Hathaway) will likely get the, ahem, lion's share of the screen time. And Web searches on Hathaway did soar an impressive 3,693%. However, folks were far more interested in learning more about Tom Hardy, who will play Bane. Online interest in the actor soared an astounding 17,662% in one day. Searches for "tom hardy bane" posted equally impressive numbers. Clearly, folks want to know more about the bad guy.
So, who is Bane? Longtime fans of Batman may have horrible memories of Bane's other big screen appearance. In the widely panned 1997 film, "Batman & Robin," a neon-hued Bane, played by the late Jeep Swenson, had a minor role as Poison Ivy's henchman.
But Bane's job in that movie was to mostly break stuff and look freakishly large. In the comics, which will presumably have a large influence over the upcoming film, Bane has a mind as impressive as his muscles. He was raised in a prison and famously broke Batman's back in an epic showdown. In other words, Bane ain't no Penguin.
It remains to be seen if director Christopher Nolan will use copious amounts of CGI to give Bane the appropriate Hulk-like appearance. After all, Hardy, while no wimp, isn't exactly 8 feet tall and made entirely of muscle. The actor was most recently seen opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in Nolan's "Inception," where he uttered the line, "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
Hardy will no doubt look a lot bigger as Bane when "The Dark Knight Rises" hits theaters in 2012. And if the film is a hit, which it almost certainly will be, expect Hardy's career to be a lot bigger, too.
Watch Tom Hardy in a scene from "Inception":
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