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Anson Mount on being 'gentle' with Batman in DC's 'Injustice' & why Star Trek fans will love 'Strange New Worlds'
Anson Mount has joined the long and illustrious list of actors who have voiced Batman in the DC Animated Universe — and it's even more impressive he was able to fit the Dark Knight in around his other gig captaining a starship around the Trek universe over on Paramount+.
The latest DCAU feature film Injustice, based on the wildly successful video game franchise, debuts Oct. 19 on Blu-ray, DVD, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, and Digital HD. Mount stars as the voice of Batman, as he battles against a tyrannical Superman who's been driven mad by tragic circumstances that we won't spoil for those who are not familiar with the Injustice storyline.
Suffice to say the film is not a happy-go-lucky turn in the DC canon, but it does feature a Dark Knight that is quite different from the one we've seen in many of the DC animated movies. In this film, it's Batman who is representing hope, due to Superman being in a very bad, very dark place. Mount portrays him with a certain vulnerability that makes his debut turn as the Caped Crusader a standout.
Check out an exclusive clip from Injustice below:
Mount's first trip to Gotham means he's now portrayed characters from DC, Marvel and of course, Star Trek, a geek-tastic tryptych he shares with Karl Urban and Mount's co-star in Star Trek: Discovery, Rebecca Romijn — though we hope he gets another shot at a Marvel project to erase the memory of that mostly-forgotten Inhumans series.
The actor chatted with SYFY WIRE to discuss his debut as the Dark Knight, as well as how he prepped for the role (he did the voice work for Injustice a full two years ago). Mount also talked a bit about why fans should be excited about another upcoming project of his, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, which debuts on the Paramount+ streaming service in 2022. He also shared his reaction to sitting in the fabled captain's chair for the first time. Read on!
SYFY WIRE: The cadence of Batman is somewhat unique. And a lot of different, very talented actors have tackled this role. How was it for you to handle the role? Because voicing Batman has to be a bit more challenging than other characters because...you know, it's Batman.
I don't know, man. I think I, I imagined the weight of that uniform, or I guess I should say disguise, and I did a couple of vocal tricks to help me get to the register I wanted, and then I showed Wes (voice director Wes Gleason) what I was doing and he liked it and we just recorded it.
There are several moments that really stood out in the movie, in particular a scene with you and Selena Kyle (voiced by Anika Noni Rose). I don't think there's ever been a scene quite like that with Batman in any of the DC animated films. I know a lot of times the voice work for these movies are recorded with the actors together. Did that happen this time?
I've just gotten used to be recording alone because I'm one of those bozos who decided not to live in LA. So it's usually me in a booth with Wes shouting directions at me, which is not a bad process, I gotta say.
That scene you're talking about, you'll have to excuse me, it's been a couple years since I recorded it, you mean ....
It's the scene after [REDACTED] dies and Catwoman goes to see Bruce in the Batcave and he just breaks down in her arms. It's one of the most un-Batman scenes ever, I think.
Yeah, yeah, I know which one you're talking about now. Scenes like that, I'm very consistent in my homework and linking moments like that to real-world stuff for me, Anson, and I cannot tell you at this point what that was nor probably would I, if I could remember. But you gotta do what you gotta do to get to those places. I think what makes it difficult to get those places a lot of times is the pressure that we put on ourselves as actors.The older I've gotten, the more gentle I've gotten with myself as a performer. I now believe that whatever is there, as long as it is connected specifically to my own experience, will be worth capturing.
I'm sure you were excited to voice Batman, but did it burst your bubble a little when you learned that you weren't the first actor to portray Christopher Pike and be the Dark Knight?
Well, I knew that going into both of these roles...
So you knew that Bruce Greenwood had voiced Batman a couple of times (Greenwood portrayed Pike in J.J. Abrams' Star Trek films)?
Oh, yeah. But that doesn't bother me. If somebody came along and asked me to play Hamlet I don't get caught up in the idea that it's been done before. It's a 450 year-old play. So that's to be expected. I just focus on how I'm gonna do it, how I'm gonna make that role my own and not really get caught up on what people have done before.
How was this experience? Is voicing Batman something that you want to do again?
Oh, absolutely. Yeah. It was a fun process and obviously the material's great. I mean, I grew up on this stuff, so yeah. As I did with Star Trek, I...I don't know what I did to have the universe shine upon me like it has. But I'm definitely grateful for the opportunities.
I think a lot of your fans recognize that affection for the material, too. Speaking of Trek, the expectations are sky high for the new show Strange New Worlds. Fans love your character and Rebecca's on Discovery. You tweeted something awhile back that that was really interesting that old-school fans are going to like what you guys are trying to pull off with the show. What is it that fans should really be excited about for?
Well, I think that tweet was a little misinterpreted. I was talking about episode 10, specifically. But I do think the spirit of our show is in its title. We're going back to the big idea of the week, the new planet of the week. I think that in itself is going to be exciting for old school fans, as well as new ones.
I think one of the things that's been missing in this genre golden age of ours is episodic television, so that's great to hear. Being such a big fan of The Original Series, what gave you bigger goosebumps -- sitting in the captain's chair for the first time or wearing the yellow uniform top?
Oh, definitely sitting in the chair. That moment...that caught me off guard. Because it was not a work day. I was just there as Anson in my own clothes and I sat down in the chair and it was in that moment that I flashed back to playing Star Trek as my make-believe game when I was like eight years old. Something about it was just really strangely emotional for me, and I'm still doing that. I don't even know really how to articulate it, but it's surreal and it's weird... but it's something that I'm so grateful for.
Injustice debuts Oct. 19 on Blu-ray, DVD, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, and Digital HD. Star Trek: Strange News Worlds is slated to premiere on Paramount+ in 2022.