The awesome new trailer for 'Batman: Arkham City' resembles everything we've been hearing about 'The Dark Knight Rises.' Interesting, huh?

We can now confirm that Professor Hugo Strange will indeed be the villain in Batman’s next big on-screen adventure. We can tell you that the fiend will learn The Dark Knight’s secret identity and use it against him. And we can also report that the caped crusader will have to fight soldiers charged with bringing him to justice, because after all, it is kind illegal to put on a mask and beat people up, even if they’re breaking the law. Now here’s the big twist: By “on-screen,” we mean your TV screen, as the entertainment we’re describing isn’t a certain eagerly-anticipated movie, but rather Batman: Arkham City, the sequel to the Batman: Arkham Asylum blockbuster videogame. Last night during the Spike Video Game Awards, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Rocksteady teased the new project (due in stores next year) with a new teaser trailer that nearly stole the show from the winners, not to mention the telecast’s other big tease, a promo for Mass Effect 3. (You can see the Strange-enhanced Batman: Arkham City trailer here.)

What’s really provocative about the game’s teaser is that all of its distinguishing elements–Hugo Strange; the secret identity plot; soliders hunting Batman–have also been key elements in the well-traveled, widely-believed, and totally unconfirmed gossip that’s been making the rounds about the next Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises, due in theaters in 2012. According to the rumors, director Christopher Nolan’s third and final Bat-flick starring Christian Bale will have actor Tom Hardy playing Hugo Strange, in a story loosely based on a storyline from the Batman comics known as “Prey,” in which the hero’s police ally Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) is forced to assemble a task force that must hunt down the vigilante. Sounds like it could work for a Bat-sequel. After all, the last Batman movie left us with The Dark Knight on the run from the cops, who believe him responsible for murders committed by district attorney-gone-loco Two-Face (Aaron Eckhart, who recently disclosed that he definitely won’t be back in the third film). But again: Nolan has steadfastly refused to comment on creative details about The Dark Knight Rises, other than to confirm the title and clarify that The Riddler won’t be the villain.

I’m tickled by the idea that perhaps the Batman rumormongers have been horribly mistaken. Could it be the that project they’ve been hearing about isn’t Nolan’s film, but WBIE’s videogame? Regardless, at least we now know that we’ll be seeing Batman battling Hugo Strange in at least one elaborately produced media product in the near future–and possibly two. How do you feel about the prospect? Are you game for overlapping if not necessarily competing Strange-centric Bat-tainments? Or are you now kinda hoping that Nolan’s movie will have nothing in common with Batman: Arkham City? (Me, I’m still holding out hope that we’ll be getting shape-shifting Clayface chaos in Batman 3.) Sound off below!

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  • Jon

    Seriously? You’re hoping for Clayface in Batman 3? What has Nolan done that leads you to believe that someone like Clayface could exist in his universe?

    • jk

      Clayface would be horrible in Nolan’s Batman series. Nolan’s Batman is a few degrees of off reality. Clayface is too comic book/sci-fi for Nolan. Wait for him in the next Joel Schumacher Batman movie–oh wait, there won’t be one.

      • Brian

        You don’t have to go to Schumacher to get a tone that’s acceptable for Clayface. Burton and the 90’s animated series both had perfect heightened reality tones.

    • Jeff Jensen

      Actually I change my mind…wow that idea was stupid!

      • JohnnyCageWins

        no it wasnt, Jensen! If drugging an entire city using a device that instantly vaporizes water with microwave energy is possible, then Clayface is AT LEAST feasible!!

      • Micah

        It was my pleasure fiindng your site the other day. I arrived here right now hoping to get new things. And I was not let down. Your ideas upon new approaches on this subject matter were insightful and a good help to us. Thank you for making time to create these things along with sharing your thoughts.

  • Jeff Jensen

    Who says his version of Clayface has to be a literal shape-shifter? How about just a master of disguise?

    • Mike

      Because then he wouldn’t be Clayface.

      • skeletor

        FYI – first incarnation of the character clayface WAS a master of disguise, an actor who played “clayface” in horror movies, modeled after boris karloff (frankenstein), who then using his movie makeup expertise to “shapeshift”, by changing appearance, voice, etc.

      • D’s Advocate

        Basil Karlo was the characters name, to highlight the Karloff homage (and also suggests a Basil Rathbone influence as well).

  • Matt1

    Really Jensen? Clayface?? WTF!!??

    • Jeff Jensen

      What’s your pick?

      • Matt1

        Rachel Weisz for Catwoman sounds good for starters…

      • Danny

        I like Clayface as a choice, in fact I like the entire Clayface crew from the comics including shapeshifters. Hugo Strange actually sounds kind of boring. Ra Al Ghul wasn’t that thrilling either in the first one. Joker and Two Face were such dynamic villains.

  • Batman-News.com

    I wrote a similar article earlier today. I wonder if WB is looking to get people familiar with Hugo Strange in Arkham City, and then have him appear on screen in The Dark Knight Rises?

  • F

    Oh, Jensen. It must be so hard for you, not having Lost to babble inanely about any more.

    • Jeff Jensen

      Really? Seems to me it’s pretty easy.

    • Anandha

      That’s an apt answer to an interesting qeustion

  • Jeff

    I agree with you Jensen – Clayface would rock!

  • Enter 77

    Doc, (if that’s really you on the boards), f the trolls! but you know that… on another note, i sent you an e-mail many moons ago asking if there would ever be a compilation of every LOST article from EW but i didn’t know if you ever responded in an article, please tell me you will push for such a magnificent coffee table treasure

    • Jeff Jensen

      A really sweet sentiment. But I don’t think that would ever happen. However, this week, I am writing my two last Lost pieces. One will appear in the next issue; the other will appear here at ew.com on Christmas Eve.

      • Jeannie

        Pretty please, Doc? I would also love a compilation of your LOST articles.

      • mojoqi

        Thanks. A Merry Christmas, indeed!

      • Jeff Jensen

        I might like men…

  • T

    Stop jumping all over Jensen about Clayface not working.
    As someone pointed out already, the first appearance of Clayface in the comics was just an actor who used the studio makeup and his acting skills to change his appearance and persona.
    While I don’t think he’ll be making an appearance in TDKR, it could be pulled off in Nolan’s more realistic tone.

    • Mike

      And for the last 60 years the Clayfaces have had clay bodies, which is not boring. Even the original Clayface now has these powers. If you strip him of that you may as well go with Hugo Strange or someone else.

  • Sith Lord J

    As long as Rachel doesn’t come back as HUSH I trust Chris Nolan

  • Rukia

    Very interesting indeed.

    I’m inclined to believe that all of the rumors we have heard up till now were about this game.

    I wish we could get a press release about the movie.

  • chris

    I would like to see Hush or Black Mask. Both characters work in the real world versions

    • anon

      I totally agree with you!, Hugo Strange would hunt Batman down to just unmask him, Black Mask rises to power as a new crime lord, and Hush just wants to kill Batman…if only such an idea could be paid attention to v_v

      • anon

        While I love Hush, I also love the idea that Hush uses Batman’s enemies and is some sort of puppet master over them.
        <___< You couldn't easily do that in the Nolan-verse atm.

  • John

    I’d love it to be Nightwing personally. My brother-in-law once suggested Bane (not the Batman & Robin version, but one with more than a brain stem).

  • Mr.G

    I think everyone would agree that that Hugo Strange would be poor follow up for the joker especially if this is the last installment of Nolan’s batman movie. I would actually love to see a well developed Bane. Also I really hate it when the time line of villains seem to take off immediatly after eachother, wouldnt it be safe to say that having the next batman take place several years after the dark knight would make for a more believable story? I think it would be very cool to open the movie with a good montage of different baddies from the batman universe taken out. Which could lead a massive arkham jail break. What do you think?

  • jordan

    So we only get one of your two last Lost pieces on the website after all of that? We have to buy the magazines for the other one? Or is it just two similar but different versions?

    • Please

      What about people overseas where they don’t sell the magazines? Only getting to read one of the articles is a bit harsh.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You’ll eventually get both online, no worries.

  • Joe

    This is interesting, considering that GameInformer claims in an article that Arkham City is sort of like that scene in Batman Begins where the island is cut off from the crazies and Strange lures Batman there with the threat of killing Catwoman. It’ll be interesting to see what intersects and separates into the two separate projects. Needless to say, I’m psyched for both game and movie!

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