Hollywood has created more than a few iconic movie cars over the years, but it’s hard to argue against the Batmobile being the most iconic of them all. Whereas vehicles like the Back to the Future DeLorean or Smokey and the Bandit’s Trans Am span a few movies over the period of a few years, the Batmobile has endured in various forms on the television and big screen for over half a century.
Recently, Warner Bros. Entertainment dropped it’s hour-long Batmobile documentary on YouTube for us would-be crimefighters to drool over. We have it embedded above for your viewing pleasure, and with all kinds of behind-the-scenes information and cool visuals, it’s definitely a pleasure to watch. The only downside is the documentary dates from 2012, so we don’t get to see the Batmobiles used in the Zach Synder films Batman v Superman or Justice League.
Gallery: Batmobile Evolution
Naturally, it all starts with the original Batmobile built by legendary motoring mastermind George Barris. When the 1966 TV series got the green light, Barris was given a budget of $15,000 to build a Batmobile, and 15 days to do it. Amazingly, he bought Ford’s Futura Concept and proceeded to create what many people feel is the most iconic Batmobile of them all.
From there, the documentary moves to the big screen cars starting with Michael Keaton’s Batman in 1989. The design of that car actually included a hodge-podge of parts, such as headlights from a Honda, taillights from a Ferrari, a fuel cap from a large bus, and a jet nozzle at the rear from a Vulcan bomber. Moving forward to the Val Kilmer era with Batman Forever, the Batmobile took on a more organic form and that theme continued with George Clooney’s Batman and Robin.
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The fifth Batmobile featured in The Dark Knight trilogy took a completely different direction. Whereas the previous incarnations were more about flashy aesthetics, director Christopher Nolan envisioned something functional and practical as a serious crimefighting machine. Affectionately called the Tumbler, it was literally born from the idea of combining a Lamborghini with a first-generation Hummer. And it was quite functional indeed, as the documentary shows the car being tested mercilessly by taking big jumps and blasting down muddy trails.
These are just a few tidbits of the wealth of Batmobile info packed into this documentary. Grab some popcorn, sit back, and embrace your dark knight within while we wait for Robert Pattinson's The Batman to arrive next year.