Though Batman Returns scared off many viewers with its dark storyline and psychosexual undertones, a third entry in the Batman franchise was never in doubt. But with the continuation of the series came a number of significant changes. First, Warner Bros. replaced the departing Tim Burton with Joel Schumacher in the director's chair. And even more dramatically, there was a new face under the cowl itself - gone was Michael Keaton, with Val Kilmer in his place.
Though Schumacher was eventually perceived as a villain by fans of the first two entries, the Lost Boys director genuinely wanted the Batman franchise to succeed and for Batman Forever to be as big a hit as possible. The proof is in the casting decisions, which included Tommy Lee Jones - fresh off an Academy Award win - and Jim Carrey, who was flying high on the trifecta of Ace Ventura, Dumb and Dumber, and The Mask.
Turns out those two stars couldn’t have been more mismatched; their behind-the-scenes acrimony only added to the already dicey situation brewing thanks to Kilmer’s reportedly difficult behavior. Though Batman Forever was a financial success - it was the second-highest-grossing film of 1995, behind only Toy Story - many involved in its production consider it a regrettable experience. Even Schumacher, who's no stranger to larger-than-life situations, said he’d never work with Tommy Lee Jones again.
Tommy Lee Jones Could Not Sanction Jim Carrey's Buffoonery
Val Kilmer Was ‘Childish And Impossible’ To Deal With
Michael Keaton Quit Because Joel Schumacher Froze Him OutPhoto: Batman Returns/Warner Bros.
Jim Carrey Almost Shaved His Hair Into A Giant Question Mark
A Stunt Driver Wrecked The Batmobile On The First Day
Robin Williams Was Supposed To Be The Riddler, But He ‘Wouldn’t Commit’