Filming This Batman Begins Scene Was So Boring, Bale Actually Fell Asleep
It's hard to fall asleep while watching Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy. It's got constant action and thrills, toeing the line between a superhero movie and a bona fide crime thriller.
But apparently, Christian Bale struggled to stay awake while filming one scene as the titular hero.
Bale is famous for his massive body transformations to fit the role he's taken. In 2004, he shed 60 pounds over four months for his role in The Machinist.
Just six months later, it was time to prepare for the bulky Batman for Nolan's Batman Begins. He added one hundred pounds of fat and muscle to prepare for the part.
It was a grueling shoot. Bale had to deal with intense fight scene choreography, acrobatic stunts, and filming on an Icelandic frozen lake.
But sometimes, even Batman needs a nap.
While filming a scene in which Bruce Wayne was awakened by Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman) and Alfred (Michael Caine), Bale shut his eyes to get into the scene. Only, he didn't wake up.
"I was meant to be waking up," Bale said, "so I laid down and just fell asleep. Only I didn't hear 'action'." Bale said he woke up to Caine poking his chest, chuckling, "He's bloody fallen asleep!"
Batman Begins was a risky move for DC and Warner Bros., having come only eight years after the commercial and critical bomb Batman & Robin, created by Joel Schumacher.
It showed studios and financers the issue with investing in comic book movies – it was far too campy and unfit for adult audiences.
Nolan quickly righted the ship, rebooting the franchise with Batman Begins. Bale, an up-and-coming star of American Psycho and Equilibrium, was cast after auditioning in a suit from Batman Forever – Joel Schumacher's first Batman movie a decade before.
Batman quickly became Bale's most famous role, one he reprised in 2008 with The Dark Knight and in 2012 with The Dark Knight Rises.
Batman Begins ended up a financial success, making $374 million at the worldwide box office. Both of its sequels grossed over $1 billion. Bale won the 2006 Saturn Award for Best Actor.
Always renowned as a method actor, Bale has recently said that he's taking a step back from his unbelievable physical transformations. He's more concerned about his health, no longer willing to add and shed weight to suit each role.
Now that he's focusing on less-demanding dramatic roles that require far less physicality, maybe Bale will be able to stay awake on set going forward.