ROSEMONT, Ill. More than 54,000 attendees visited the annual "Wizard World Chicago convention, celebrating comic books, pop culture and collectibles.
A surprise visit from "Batman Begins director Christopher Nolan thrilled the lucky few hundred fans who were allowed into the Saturday panel. The director previewed a few minutes of footage from the film, which received positive reviews from Batman fans in the audience.
The montage, which will not be seen again for months, previewed Batman (Christian Bale) training in the Himalayan mountains, sword fighting with Ducard (Liam Neeson) and taking a test-drive with Lucious Fox (Morgan Freeman) in the latest incarnation of the Batmobile.
Screenwriter David Goyer had spoken at an earlier panel, and said this Batman would be younger than previous filmed incarnations, filling the gap between when Bruce Wayne's parents were murdered and when he first became Batman.
Goyer said some of the darker Batman tales, including Frank Miller's "Batman: Year One, influenced this film.
"I think our biggest influences were Year One,' the (Denny) O'Neil Batman, and the stuff that Jeph Loeb has done, Goyer said. "Chris (Nolan) and I were big fans of Long Halloween' and Dark Victory.'
Goyer said artists Mike Kaluta's and Marshall Rogers' work on Batman was also a visual influence.
While the costume is largely black, Goyer said "on screen and moving around, it's closer to the actual comic than to the costumes of the previous Batman films.
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