Everything We Know About DCU’s New ‘Batman’ Reboot, ‘The Brave and the Bold’

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Batman (Robert Pattinson) standing beneath a ray of light

Credit: DC / Warner Bros.

Confused about DC Studios’ new Batman franchise reboot? Here’s a roundup of everything we know so far about the new Caped Crusader — and what’s likely to happen in the new movie.

Christian Bale as Batman in Batman Begins
Credit: DC / Warner Bros.

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Following the Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) merger, the studio underwent significant restructuring, leading to the departure of Walter Hamada, the former head of WB’s DC film division. James Gunn, renowned for directing the Guardians of the Galaxy series in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) for The Walt Disney Company and The Suicide Squad (2021) (distinct from the 2016 Suicide Squad featuring Jared Leto as the Joker), stepped in to succeed Hamada, alongside co-CEO Peter Safran.

Batman (Ben Affleck) costume in the 'Batman v Superman' trailer
Credit: DC / Warner Bros.

In the latest phase of the DC Universe (DCU), titled “Chapter One – Gods and Monsters,” James Gunn and his newly established DC Studios are set to revamp the former DC Extended Universe (DCEU) for a fresh beginning.

The primary focus is on the upcoming film, SUPERMAN (previously Superman: Legacy) starring David Corenswet as Clark Kent/Superman taking over from Henry Cavill, inspired by the DC Comics series of the same name. This film aims to reboot the narrative continuity of Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel and Justice League, known as the “Snyderverse.”

The Flash stands with Batman and Supergirl in a poster for 'The Flash'
Credit: DC Studios / Warner Bros.

Related: DC’s Choice of Robin for Upcoming ‘Batman’ Reboot Questioned by Fans

Batman’s Brave and Bold Reboot

Following the example of The Walt Disney Studios’ Marvel Studios, DC Studios seems ready to introduce a new generation of heroes to the big screen within a revitalized and rebooted DC Comics-inspired shared cinematic universe.

The era of Michael Keaton’s Batman (though recently revitalized in Ezra Miller-led The Flash (2022)) and even George Clooney appears to be a thing of the past when it comes to DC films.

Let’s not mention Christian Bale in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight trilogy. Although Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) introduced Ben Affleck as Batman/Bruce Wayne in the DCEU (which has now been entirely phased out), James Gunn’s brand-spanking new DCU is set to launch a completely new Batman storyline in the upcoming movie, The Brave and the Bold, to be helmed by The Flash director Andy Muschietti.

What Will DCU’s New Batman The Brave and the Bold Be About?

Batman (left) and Damian Wayne as Robin (right)
Credit: DC Comics

So far, we know that Gunn plans for The Brave and the Bold to introduce Damian Wayne as Robin and establish DC Comics’ “Bat Family” — a beloved group of adopted Robins, Batgirls, and other Bat-allies who always answer Bruce Wayne’s call, even after becoming fully-fledged heroes themselves.

Gunn seems like quite a fan of DC’s Grant Morrison, seeing as upcoming SUPERMAN is allegedly based on Morrison’s All Star Superman series (among others).

Basing The Brave and the Bold on Grant Morrison’s seven-year DC comic book Batman run, which began with 2006’s “Batman and Son”, it’s clear that Gunn is keen to expand the Batman film lore beyond what’s already been seen to date, with a bigger focus on the characters surrounding Bruce Wayne — especially Robin.

Who Will Be in The Brave and the Bold?

Truly a question for the ages, it seems.

Michael Keaton's Batman without his cowl in 'Batman Returns' (1992)
Credit: DC / Warner Bros.

What’s 100 percent confirmed is the introduction of Gunn’s self-stated favorite Robin character, Damian Wayne. With an ambitious plan to start with the DC Comics’ most recent Robin character (and thus the furthest down the canonical Batman timeline, with the oldest Batman/Bruce Wayne), Gunn is already making a huge statement.

Therefore, it’s rather safe to assume that Damian Wayne and the parade of ex-Robins before him will make an appearance — along with some other key figures in the Bat-world.

Characters Confirmed (And Those Most Likely) in DCU’s Batman Reboot

Bruce Wayne/Batman

Okay, technically, we don’t know if this edition of Batman will actually be Bruce Wayne, famously orphaned as a child after a family night out at the opera, and heir to Gotham City’s Wayne Enterprises and the vast Wayne family fortune (there have technically been other Batmans in the DC Comics).

Damian Wayne as Robin standing behind Batman, arms raising a sword above Batman's head while he is crouched on the ground, and seemingly preparing to slash.
Credit: DC Comics

We just know that “Batman” will be in the movie, and that the story will bring in a ton of Batman-surrounding characters, both on the side of justice in Gotham and the side of Batman’s significant (and iconically insane) rogue’s gallery.

This Batman will be slightly older, definitely older than the DCU’s new Superman/Clark Kent (David Corenswet).

It’s likely that Bruce Wayne will be in the film to some extent, being the quintessential icon of the franchise he is — but whether he will remain Batman throughout is a different question. In fact, some evidence points to Bruce Wayne eventually (if not during The Brave and the Bold, somewhere down the line) having to give up being Gotham’s Dark Knight for an extended period of time.

All of this has sort of been hinted at by Gunn himself, and ties in very closely to the next character on the list.

Damian Wayne/Robin

Technically, he may not be Robin yet.

Damian Wayne as Robin crouching on top of building with Gotham City in the background
Credit: DC Comics

The biological son of Bruce Wayne in DC Comics, Damian Wayne is the result of Talia al Ghul (the cunning and deadly daughter of the leader of the League of Assassins, Ra’s al Ghul) and Bruce Wayne’s coupling — involving a fair bit of drugs on Bruce Wayne’s part.

In Grant Morrison and Andy Kubert’s “Batman and Son” story, Talia al Ghul rather unceremoniously dumps 12-year-old Damian Wayne, raised and trained as an assassin in the League, on Bruce Wayne’s doorstep.

Damian Wayne kills and maims without any qualms (going against Batman’s entire “no killing” and “no guns” ethos), and rubbing up against the existing Robin at Wayne Manor, Tim Drake.

Gunn describes Damian Wayne as “a little assassin who Batman tries to get in line” and, more recently, as a “little son of a b*tch” (via CBR)– an apt description, as the assassin-trained child refuses to cooperate with Bruce Wayne on nearly everything.

The plan for the DCU’s iteration of Batman will, therefore, most likely take place after Bruce Wayne has established himself (notably older than Corenswet’s Superman/Clark Kent). Interestingly, Gunn is introducing the “last” Robin in the comics to introduce “beginning of… the ‘Bat Family’ in the DCU” (in his words), instead of starting from Batman’s first, Dick Grayson.

Morrison’s run and the Damian Wayne story continues through to “Batman and Robin” with Frank Quitely, and into the “Batman Incorporated” or “Batman, Inc.” storylines — clear inspirations for Gunn’s DCU iterations of the character.

Dick Grayson/Nightwing/(Former) Robin

Now, we’re veering into the territory of educated speculation and “filling in the blanks”, or “reading between the lines” — based on extremely logical reasoning.

Brenton Thwaites as Nightwing in 'Titans'
Credit: Warner Bros.

Amid rumors of Jake Gyllenhaal potentially taking on the role of Batman, it appears DC Studios might have found their Nightwing/Dick Grayson in Shazam! (2019) and Shazam! Fury of the Gods (2023) star Asher Angel, known for his role as Billy Batson (AKA Shazam), after Timothée Chalamet was also rumored to play Nightwing/Dick Grayson.

What’s particularly intriguing is that this version of Dick Grayson, having graduated from the Robin role to become Nightwing, might be stepping into the role of Batman from Bruce Wayne in The Brave and the Bold — whether in the upcoming debut film or at some time in the future.

Seeing as Tony Daniel’s “Batman: Battle for the Cowl” following “Batman and Son” saw Grayson stepping into the Batman role (albeit begrudgingly) after the seeming death of Bruce Wayne, Grayson’s Batman finally accepted Damian Wayne as his Robin — officially inducting Bruce Wayne’s biological son into the Bat Family proper as an “official” Robin — and he remained so even after his dad’s return to the “living”.

Tim Drake/Red Robin and Jason Todd/Red Hood

Tim Drake's Red Robin (left) throwing a punch towards Jason Todd's Red Hood (right) from DC Comics
Credit: DC Comics

Tim Drake was Robin when Damian Wayne was pulled into Bruce Wayne’s life, and their first encounter ended rather poorly. The two came to blows after Damian Wayne proved especially careless about murdering bad guys. In the comics, Drake becomes the Red Robin after Damian Wayne takes on the proper Robin role.

Jason Todd, another former Robin who left Batman’s immediate crime-fighting family, was killed as Robin and then brought back (and traumatized), finally choosing to go down a more violent vigilante path as the Red Hood. Seeing as Damian Wayne steals Jason Todd’s Robin outfit in “Batman and Son”, it’s likely that Todd exists in the new DC Universe in some form.

Barbara Gordon/Batgirl/Oracle

Barbara Gordon as Batgirl, yelling and about to throw yellow Batarangs
Credit: DC Comics

Honestly, it’s going to be a bit of a sausage party without the fan-favorite Barbara Gordon, daughter of Gotham City Police Department (GCPD) Commissioner Gordon. In the comics, Barbara Gordon takes on the mantle of Batgirl, becoming an indispensable component of the Bat Family.

Even later, when (spoilers for “The Killing Joke”) she becomes paralyzed by the Joker, Barbara Gordon takes on the mantle of Oracle, helping the Bat Family with her tech genius and research smarts from behind the scenes. Although Babs doesn’t stay Oracle in the DC Comics forever, it’s unknown whether she will make an appearance in The Brave and the Bold — and at which stage of the narrative she might be at.

Alfred Pennyworth

Alfred the iconic Wayne family butler, nearly did not make this list.

Alfred Pennyworth (Michael Gough) talking to Bruce Wayne (Michael Keaton) in the Batcave in 'Batman' (1989)
Credit: DC / Warner Bros.

Whether portrayed by Alan Napier, Michael Gough, Michael Caine, Jeremy Irons, or Andy Serkis, Alfred is an essential and iconic part of Batman’s lore and mythos, as well as a central and necessary figure in the upkeep of Wayne Manor and the Batcave, so he makes this list as the last (but not least) entry.

Basically the father to Bruce Wayne and grandfather to all of Bruce Wayne’s adopted wards (Robins) and assorted family friends, Alfred holds down the fort and remains the heart of the Batman franchise. He literally reminds Batman of his humanity and takes care of his well-being on multiple occasions.

Red Hood in black outfit with red hood with sword and crowbar (left). Nightwing in black and blue outfit holding escrima sticks (center). Red Robin in red and yellow outfit with bo-staff (right). Spoiler (back) jumping down in black-purple hooded cape. Nightwing is saying, "Hey, Mudder. Check this math out. Four Robins. One you."
Credit: DC Comics

The likelihood of James Gunn bringing in all of these ex-Robins and family friends like Dick Grayson/Nightwing, Jason Todd/Red Hood, Tim Drake/Red Robin, Damian Wayne/Robin, and Barbara Gordon/Batgirl/Oracle, is nearly certain.

Just how he plans to rope all of these characters into the film franchise and truly ensure that it stands alone and on its own merits from director Matt Reeves’ DC Elseworlds The Batman franchise starring Robert Pattinson and surrounding a much younger Bruce Wayne is currently anyone’s guess.

But with SUPERMAN nearly ready, and the DCU trucking along with Peacemaker Season 2 starring John Cena (Peacemaker), it’s only a matter of time before Gunn gets to the Batman franchise, and The Brave and the Bold.

Is there anyone we missed? Are you excited about James Gunn’s DCU Batman, and The Brave and the Bold? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

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