A major star was spotted filming a scene for The Dark Knight Rises on Monday—but this is potentially such a big spoiler that you'd better stop reading right now if you don't want to know the details.
Still with us? Okay, don't say you weren't warned ...
According to Hitfix, Liam Neeson shot a scene on Monday in London as Ra's al Ghul for the third film in director Christopher Nolan's epic Bat-trilogy. Neeson played the role in Nolan's first Caped Crusader adventure, 2005's Batman Begins, where he first tried to recruit Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) into the mysterious League of Shadows and then became his enemy in the battle for Gotham City's survival.
Ra's was presumably killed in a fiery train crash at the end of that film, but as fans of Batman comics know, the character in the books is essentially immortal and can resurrect himself by submersion in the dangerous chemical pool known as a Lazarus Pit.
Does this mean that Nolan is finally delving into the weirder, more supernatural aspects of the Batman universe after keeping his first two films grounded in reality? Not necessarily. It's not clear whether Neeson was filming some sort of flashback or a scene as a resurrected Ra's.
But we do know that the production went to a remote part of India during the early days of shooting, where a leaked photo appeared to show what could be a Lazarus pit on the set. We also know that actor Josh Pence (The Social Network) was cast as a young Ra's in the film, and the betting money also still says that Marion Cotillard is playing his daughter Talia (disguised as a Wayne Enterprises board member named Miranda Tate).
Of course, Warner Bros. Pictures is silent on all of this, as they are with anything regarding Nolan's Batman films. We have just over a year to find out what it all means, since The Dark Knight Rises opens on July 20, 2012.
But in the meantime, do you think it's cool if Ra's returns? Is it about time that Christopher Nolan got away from his "reality" rule about the Batman films?