Why is Everyone Talking About the Secret Fourth Movie in the Dark Knight Series?

Why is Everyone Talking About the Secret Fourth Movie in the Dark Knight Series?
Image credit: Warner Bros.

The 2008 forgotten film is a great addition to Nolan's trilogy.


  • Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy is still considered one of the best iterations of the Batman story.
  • In addition to the trilogy, an animated film was released in 2008 to complement the Nolan canon.
  • The film may serve as an inspiration for future Batman adaptations.

December 2024 will see the premiere of Creature Commandos, the new animated series on Max, the first project to be released under the soft-rebooted DC Universe since James Gunn and Peter Safran became co-CEOs of DC Studios. This will mark a new milestone in DC media history, and the writers are probably already hard at work reimagining the series and exploring existing source material. Of course, this will also affect Batman, as Matt Reeves' The Batman and the upcoming The Penguin are not technically part of the new canon.

For future Batman projects, Gunn and co will surely draw inspiration from previous iterations, including the aforementioned Matt Reeves film. And it's a safe bet that Christopher Nolan's acclaimed Dark Knight trilogy, co-written with Jonathan Nolan and David S. Goyer, won't be overlooked either. In this context, fans of DC and especially the Christian Bale movies have recently been discussing the half-forgotten animated film that is part of the Dark Knight series. Let's break down why it's worth a watch.

A Secret Movie That Is Part of The Dark Knight Series

We're talking about Batman: Gotham Knight, a 2008 animated film. It's a six-part anthology, each animated by a prominent Japanese studio: Studio 4°C, Madhouse, Bee Train, and Production I.G. The script was written by equally prominent screenwriters and comic book writers Josh Olson, Brian Azzarello, Greg Rucka, Jordan Goldberg, Alan Burnett, and David S. Goyer. The story takes place between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight.

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While each of the six parts of the film are vaguely related to each other and far from integral to the narrative of the main Dark Knight trilogy, they still provide a lot of interesting context that ties in well with the feature films. For example, the opening segment, inspired by Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon, tells the story of the first reports of Batman from the citizens of Gotham after the Scarecrow's fear toxin incident.

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The Movie Could Be a Template for Future DC Media

What's more, the animated Batman: Gotham Knight movie could not only be a good spectacle for fans, featuring many iconic villains that didn't make it into Nolan's film trilogy, but also for writers who will be working on upcoming media in the rebooted DC Universe.

For example, depending on the style of a particular movie or series, whether it's more grounded like Nolan's or flashier like Zack Snyder's, Gotham Knight could be a great sounding board for which villains or storylines in general are worth tackling and which should be left to the animated format.

Films planned for the next few years include The Brave and the Bold, which will focus on the relationship between Bruce Wayne and his son Damian, who has taken on Robin's alter ego, and the untitled Teen Titans movie. So it's pretty obvious that characters from Batman's villainous pantheon will be involved.

What's more, Gotham Knight seems to have handled Easter eggs and homages far more subtle than any of DC's recent films (Flash, we're looking at you). All in all, the writers should definitely take the animated film into account.

Where to Watch the Movie?


You can rent the animated movie on most on-demand platforms, including Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube, Fandango at Home, and the Microsoft Store. HD-quality rentals start at $3.99.


The same goes for full purchase, which you can do on the platforms listed above. HD-quality purchases start at $12.99.