The Batman Crusade is a 2017 comic book-action film directed by Darren Anorofsky . It is the sequel to the hit 2015 blockbuster The Batman. Armie Hammer returns as the title role, along with Brittany Snow as Jessica Dent, David Thewlis as Alfred Pennyworth, Bryan Cranston as Jim Gordon, Jim Sturgess as Harvey Dent, and Anthony Mackie as Lucius Fox. Joining the cast is Woody Harrelson as Edward Nigma/ The Riddler and Zoe Saldana as Selina Kyle. The film was well recieved both critically and financially, gaining a 86% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and grossing an estimated total of $926,758,990 in the box office.
- Armie Hammer as Bruce Wayne/ Batman- A billionaire playboy who is secretly the masked vigilante known as the Batman. Hammer reportedly signed on to film two sequels to The Batman. In an interview, Hammer said that "Bruce will face struggles to leading his double life, but not so much with the Batman part of it, but more with the Bruce Wayne. A main theme of this one is that Bruce sees his real self as the Batman, and Bruce Wayne as his disguise."
- Brittany Snow as Jessica Dent- Bruce's love interest and Harvey Dent's twin sister. She figured out that Bruce was Batman at the end of the first film, but Bruce is unaware of her knowledge of his identity. In an interview with Conan O'Brien, Snow voiced her displeasure with her character being a "damsel in distress" in the first film, and hoped that Jessica would find herself as being more of an ally to Batman in the sequel.
- Woody Harrelson as Edward Nigma/ The Riddler- The film's main antagonist. An FBI agent assigned with the task of arresting the Batman, but has a hidden agenda of his own. The casting of Harrelson was met with criticism from both critics and fans alike, but Anorofsky stated that he liked Harrelson's ability to appear both sinister and insane all at one. Harrelson described this interpretation of the character as "a cross between Blofeld of the James Bond series, and Heath Ledger's Joker from The Dark Knight. He is a mastermind, and Batman's match on an intelligence level, but is also a psycho."
- David Thewlis as Alfred Pennyworth- Bruce's butler, father figure, and confidant.
- Bryan Cranston as Captain Jim Gordon- Batman's ally within the Gotham City Police Force. According to Cranston, Gordon will have an instant feud with Edward Nigma.
- Jim Sturgess as Harvey Dent- The Gotham City District Attorney, as well as Bruce's best friend from childhood. According to Sturgess, Harvey will undergo a huge step towards becoming the villain Two-Face, but will not necessarily fully become him just yet.
- Zoe Saldana as Selina Kyle- A mysterious and seductive Gotham socialite. Not much is known of her past, nor the source of her wealth. Both Saldana and Anorofsky confirmed that the character will not be Catwoman in the film, but neither ruled it out for any future films. Saldana also said that Selina will get on Jessica Dent's nerves when it comes to Bruce.
- Anthony Mackie as Lucius Fox- An engineer at Wayne Enterprises who supplies Bruce with tools and weaponry to use as Batman. Anorofsky hinted at the possibility of Lucius figuring out the real reason of his father's death by saying, "I know that it seemed like we just abandoned that storyline in the first film, but trust me, we haven't forgotten about it."
- Jim Broadbent as Arnold Wesker/ The Ventriloquist- A small-time Gotham thug with dissociative identity disorder.
- Mark Hamill as Mr. Scarface (voice)- Wesker's puppet.
- Michael Madsen as Sgt. Carl Bullock- Jim Gordon's right-hand man on the police force.
- Jimmy Smits as Commissioner Jack West- The new commissioner of the Gotham Police Force.
- Jon Turturro as Tony Zucco- Gotham's new biggest crime boss.
- Rob Brown as Detective Crispus Allen- A detective working under Jim Gordon.
- Genesis Rodriguez as Detective Renee Montoya- Allen's partner.
- Elisha Cuthbert as Gilda Gold- Harvey Dent's fiance.
Bruce Greenwood briefly reprises his role of Hamilton Hill. Cincinnati Reds pitcher Homer Bailey, noted for his resemblance to former Batman actor Christian Bale, has a cameo as a Gotham baseball star who attends a Wayne Enterprises chairty event and tells Bruce that he is often told that they look alike, to which Bruce replies, "I think that you're thinking of someone else."
The film starts off in Arkham Asylum, meant to be a few hours after the first one ended. A doctor at the asylum opens the door for a man whose face isn't seen, and asks him if he got the information that he wanted. The man does not answer, and simply walks away. Another doctor comes up and asks the doctor who the man was. The doctor says that he never said his name, but that he came to see Sionis to ask him a few questions. The other doctor points out that they were in there for three hours, and asks what the questions could have possibly been about, and the doctor replies: "The Batman."
The film shifts to an alley late at night, where a group of street thugs are mugging an innocent man. After they steal his wallet, a thug pulls out a knife. Just after he pulls it out, he hears one of his buddies scream from behind. He turns and sees that the rest of the group is gone, and then Batman emerges and savagely beats the thug until he is knocked out.
The scene shifts to a charity event run by Wayne Enterprises at a hotel, where such guests are Harvey Dent, Hamilton Hill, new police commissioner Jack West, and Jessica Dent. Harvey stops Alfred, who is working at the event as a server, and asks where Bruce is, as he is supposed to give a speech. Alfred tells Harvey that he should be arriving very soon, and Jessica looks on, pretending to be unaware of what is going on. The scene changes again to a Gotham street, where Batman is fighting off more thugs. He then gets into the batmobile, and sees that he has a call from Alfred, and he realizes that he still needs to be at the charity event.
The scene goes back to the hotel, where Lucius asks Alfred if there has been any word from Bruce yet. Alfred reminds Lucius that Bruce is a "very busy man." Eavesdropping, a beautiful woman interrupts the conversation and says that she was under the impression that Bruce Wayne spent his nights partying. The woman introduces herself as Selina Kyle, and Alfred asks if she is a philanthropist. She replies that everyone benefits from charity.
Alfred enters the kitchen, and sees Bruce rushing in, quickly getting into his tuxedo. Alfred hands him a wine glass, and Bruce reminds him that he doesn't drink, but Alfred says that it is ginger ale and that he needs an alibi. Bruce takes the glass, and then enters the party, pretending that he is drunk. Harvey approaches him and reminds him that he needs to give a speech about Wayne Enterprises sponsoring the Gotham Foster Care Program. Bruce goes up to the podium and gives the speech, still pretending to be drunk, leading to expressions of both amusement and dissapointment from the audience. After the end of the speech, Bruce goes down and speaks to Jessica. She asks if he partied too hard, and he is obviously having a hard time keeping his drunk guise in front of her due to his feelings for her and his wanting to be authentic with her. They are soon interrupted by Selina, who introduces herself to Bruce. He is clearly smitten by her beauty, and Jessica appears to be jealous.
Bruce then goes to speak with Lucius, and apologizes for not finding out more about his father's death. Lucius tells Bruce that he knows he is busy, and that he is sure that they will know the truth soon enough. They then see Mayor Hill speaking with Commissioner West, and Lucius asks why Bruce hasn't locked up the mayor yet, and Bruce tells him that he is working on it. The scene then changes to outside of the hotel, where the mayor exits to for a cigarette. He is startled by a man who comes out of the shadows, who reveals himself to be Edward Nigma. Hill asks what he is doing there, and Nigma tells him that Sionis was no help whatsoever because he is delusional. The mayor angrily tells him to figure out a different way to find the Batman, and Nigma forces his walking stick onto Hill's neck. Nigma tells Hill that he isn't the only one who wants the Batman, and that there are people who are willing to pay him more in order to find him. Hill asks who else is offering Nigma money to find the Batman, and Nigma responds with a riddle. Hill is confused, and asks what Nigma is talking about. Nigma says that he could tell him, but then he'd have to kill him. He then turns to walk away, but then turns back around and shoots the mayor in the neck, causing him to fall backward off of the balcony and onto the street. He is then shown getting into the back of a limo, and then dials a number on his cell phone, and tells the person that it is done.
The next day, the mayor's assassination is the highlight of the news. The police station is shown, and Gordon is clearly very busy going over the case, when the commissioner enters his office. He tells Gordon that there is an FBI agent there to see him. Gordon asks what he wants, and West says that he wouldn't say. Gordon goes into a conference room to meet with the agent, which is shown to be Nigma. Nigma asks Gordon what he knows about the Batman. Gordon angrily asks if Nigma has a warrant, and Nigma responds that only he will be asking the questions. Gordon exclaims to Nigma that he will not answer to him until he shows him legitimate credentials, and then storms off. Nigma looks on with a sinister smile.
Next we see Alfred enter the batcave, where Bruce is nowhere to be found. Alfred looks on the computer and sees webpages about the mayor and articles on the murder. All of a sudden, Alfred is startled by a loud blast just a few feet away, and then turns to see Bruce testing a new gun designed by Lucius. Alfred then asks Bruce what he knows about the mayor's murder, and Bruce says that the bullet used was a special type, one that he has never even heard of before, and that he is running a trace on it now.
The scene shifts to a nightclub called "Scarface", where Nigma is entering. He tells a waitress that he wants to speak to her boss, and she says that no one speaks to Mr. Weskew. He then tells her let him know that he has a riddle for Mr. Scarface. The waitress enters a back room and tells the owner, Arnold Weskew, that there is a man waiting for him in a green coat who has a riddle for Mr. Scarface. Weskew is clearly disturbed and tells her to send him in. Nigma enters the office, and Weskew tells him that he can't speak to Mr. Scarface. Nigma tells Weskew that he needs Mr. Scarface's help in catching someone; the Batman. Weskew is clearly angered at hearing the name, and says that Mr. Scarface wants nothing to do with the Batman, not after what happened to Rupert Thorne. Nigma then tells Weskew that Mr. Scarface has something that Thorne didn't that will defeat the Batman. Weskew asks what, and Nigma replies: "It is something to everyone, and nothing to everyone else." He then walks out and Weskew is clearly worried at the riddle, not being able to figure out the answer. A raspy voice is then heard offscreen and replies: "Your mind, you idiot."
Gordon is then seen standing on the roof of police headquarters next to the bat-signal, when Batman arrives. Gordon tells Batman about Nigma and how he is investigating him. Batman asks if Gordon considers Nigma to be a serious threat, and Gordon responds that he isn't sure yet. The conversation then changes to the mayor's murder, and Batman explains how the bullets from the gun are virtually untraceable. Gordon explains that his unit went over the security footage of the event hundreds of times, and never found anything standing out to imply any suspicious behavior. Gordon also says that the mayor's killer was standing underneath the one place on the balcony where no security camera could see him. Batman tells Gordon that they are dealing with a highly trained professional, and that the mayor's assassination was no random act of violence, but rather most likely an organized conspiracy. Batman then says that they'll need to find all of the mayor's business dealings in the time leading up to his death, all of them. Gordon says that he doesn't have the authority to get that close, that only the new mayor does. Batman reminds Gordon that the new mayor is the incumbent D.A., and the new D.A. is Harvey Dent, who will surely have access to such records.
The film then shifts to the Gotham courthouse, where Harvey is prosecuting mob boss Tony Zucco. The trial is put into recess, and as Harvey is leaving, Gordon approaches him. Gordon tells him that he needs records of Mayor Hill's business transactions that were made jus before his death. Dent tells Gordon the only ones that will be of any use to finding anything were likely only known by Hill himself, and can't be found now. Gordon then assures Dent that their "mutual friend" will take care of the dirty work, but that Dent just needs to get him somewhere to start. Dent agrees to dig in to Hill's past.
Next, Bruce is shown in the batcave, researching Nigma. He cannot find any criminal records on him, only files on his career as an FBI agent. Alfred then enters and shows Bruce that there has been a result in Bruce's tracing on the bullets that killed the mayor. Alfred shows the results to Bruce, and reveals that there has only been one reported incident in which the same types of bullets were used, and it was also in Gotham City. Bruce asks who it was used to kill, as they were probably associated with the same people who killed the mayor. Alfred tells Bruce that the same bullets were recovered from the corpse of Lucius's father, Eugene Fox.
The next day, Bruce meets with Lucius privately, and tells him about the finding, and that the same people who killed his father are likely responsible for the mayor's death as well. Lucius then fears that his father was corrupt, just like the mayor, but Bruce suggests that they probably just pissed off the wrong people, not that Lucius's father was evil. The scene then changes to city hall, where Gordon, Bullock, and police squad cars are arriving to deal with a hostage situation. Gordon asks a beat cop if they have any leads on who the mastermind behind the situation is, and the cop answers that it is a crime boss known only as Mr. Scarface. Nigma arrives and announces that he has much experience in dealing with hostages, and that he will negotiate with him. Gordon is hesitant to allow him to go in, but Nigma says that he will have him fired of he tries to stop him. Nigma walks in, and Gordon looks up and sees that Batman is standing on top of the building.
Nigma walks into city hall, and calls for Weskew. After a while, a raspy voice is heard asking what Nigma wants. Nigma tells Mr. Scarface that he wants to know what is going on. Gunshots are fired at Nigma's direction, and he turns around to see Weskew holding a puppet with a tommy gun. Nigma asks Weskew if he was able to get the information that he requested. Weskew, talking through Mr. Scarface, replies that it was already taken, by Harvey Dent. Nigma is intrigued that Dent took the files that he was after, and wonders if he should pay him a visit. All of a sudden, Batman arrives and beats up Weskew, throwing Mr. Scarface against a wall. He then shoves Nigma against a wall and demands to know what he is after. Nigma tells Batman that he was been waiting for a while to meet him, completely ignoring his question. Batman then asks why Nigma is after the same information that Dent is after. Nigma replies that it is merely government work, and that a costumed vigilante has no business knowing about it. Batman then tells Nigma that he has been looking up info on him, and that he is clean, almost too clean. He says that certain aspects about Nigma's background don't add up, and that he knows he is hiding something. Nigma asks Batman how he would have known that he was working in Gotham, and points out that he must have a contact within the police department, and only two officers know that he is in Gotham. Before Batman can say anything, Weskew shoots at them with his Mr. Scarface doll. The distraction allows Nigma to get out of Batman's grasp, and he then pulls out a remote control and gives Batman a riddle: "Feed me and I live, give me drink and I die. What am I?" Batman is annoyed at Nigma and and yells at him, but Nigma presses the button and sets fire to the building, before answering, "Fire." Batman tries to save the hostages, but sees that they were already dead, and rushes to get out of the burning building.
Nigma makes it out and pretends that Mr. Scarface set fire to the building after the Batman arrived, ruining the chance to rescue the hostages. He then tells Gordon that he will need his help in putting together a task force to catch the Batman, and that he wants all evidence that Gordon has on the Batman. Gordon tells Nigma that there isn't enough evidence to prove that the Batman was behind it, but Nigma points out that he was an eye witness to the event, and that is sufficient enough. Gordon nearly loses his cool with Nigma, but is held back by Bullock.
The next day, the Gotham media runs the story that was made up by Nigma, that Arnold Weskew burned down city hall after the Batman arrived, ruining Nigma's attempt to negotiate with him. Bruce is furious, despite attempts by Alfred to calm him down. The Wayne Manor doorbell suddenly rings, and Bruce tells Alfred to turn whoever it is away. The visitor turns out to be Jessica, and Alfred tells her that Bruce is severely hung over. Jessica, however, knows this is a lie, but tells Alfred that she has to speak to Bruce about urgent matters concerning the foster care facility. Bruce realizes that the visitor is Jessica, and eventually comes down and tells Alfred to let her in. Bruce, not realizing the real reason for Jessica's visit, tries to keep up his act of arrogance, but she tries her hardest to talk to the "real" Bruce, without revealing her knowledge of his secret. Wanting to have an authentic conversation with him, she brings up the topic of the Batman, and how she doesn't believe that he is actually responsible for the city hall fire. Not wanting to discuss it, Bruce tells Jessica that he isn't feeling well and that she should leave.
The film shifts to a nightclub where Tony Zucco is approached by one of his henchmen, who tells him that there's someone from the FBI who wants to see him. Thinking he is in trouble, he goes to see him, and it turns out to be Nigma. Zucco asks what he wants, and Nigma tells him that he can help him get rid of Harvey Dent, but he will need some help from him as well. Zucco tells Nigma that he is interested, and Nigma then tells Zucco that he wants him to find out dirt on Jim Gordon. Zucco tells Nigma that he has tried before, and that Gordon is the one cop in Gotham who is squeaky clean. Nigma then tells Zucco that Gordon works with the Batman, and that in order to get the Batman, they will need to get to Gordon. Zucco asks about Dent, and Nigma tells him not to worry about it and that he'll take care of Dent.
The scene shifts to the roof of police headquarters, where Gordon is waiting for Batman to arrive, to no avail. Eventually, Dent arrives instead, asking what is taking the Batman so long. Gordon suggests that he is probably upset about how things turned out the previous night at city hall. Harvey then gives Gordon the files he was able to dig up on Hill, and reveals that Hill had made several transfers worth $750,000 each to an anonymous offshore bank account. Dent also noticed that the transfers started taking place the day after Loeb and Thorne were caught by the Batman, and suggests that they may have been to pay someone to cover his tracks, out of fear of the Batman. A deep voice from offscreen adds that they may have been to catch the Batman. The two men turn to see that Batman is on the roof with them. Batman tells them what he heard Nigma say to Weskew the previous night, and that the hostages were dead before anyone even arrived at the scene, meaning that Nigma set it up with Weskew. Gordon says that they need to find evidence connecting Nigma to the mayor's murder, but Batman points out that he is smarter than any of them can imagine, and was able to figure out that Gordon is Batman's ally.
As Bruce returns to Wayne Manor, Alfred informs him that he has been invited to a fundraiser event to help rebuild city hall. Bruce is uninterested, and Alfred says that he thought he would say that, and then informs him that Fox was able to retreive intel that informed that the mayor also invited Edward Nigma. The scene then shifts to the fundraiser, where Harvey and his fiance, Gilda, are in attendance, along with Nigma, Jessica, Selina Kyle, Gordon, Bullock, and of course, Bruce. Nigma constantly urges Gordon to keep an eye out for the Batman, as he is sure that he will be causing trouble. Gordon is clearly irked at the comments. Nigma then introduces himself to Dent, and makes risque comments regarding Gilda, clearly angering Harvey. Nigma smirks and tells Dent that he never thought that the Gotham D.A. had such a temper. Bruce witnesses the argument, and then approaches Nigma, pretending to be drunk. During his act, he purposely spills his beverage on Nigma. Nigma is annoyed and excuses himself to the restroom in order to clean up. Bruce then pulls out his cell phone and sees a signal emiting, and it is revealed to the audience that the "drunken" encounter with Nigma was all a way for Bruce to get a tracking device on him. Nigma enters the restroom and recieves a phone call. The caller is Zucco, who tells Nigma that everything is ready.
Bruce then recieves a text message from Fox, who was listening to the phone conversation through the device that Bruce planted on Nigma, saying that Zucco and Nigma are planning something. Before Bruce can do anything, several masked men with guns enter the fundraiser and hold all of the guests hostage. Gordon and Bullock both pull out guns, but they are both apprehended by some of the masked men. Nigma acts as if one of the robbers are taking him captive, while Nigma actually instructs the robber to grab Jessica and make sexual advances toward her. The robber is confused, and Nigma just repeats his command. The robber does as he is told, and incurs the wrath of Harvey, just as Nigma had planned to happen. Harvey punches the robber in the face, and several of the robbers advance toward Dent and beat him savagely. Bruce sends a text message to Fox informing him of the situation, and Fox hacks into the building's security database and turns off the power. Bruce is able to make his way out and changes into his Batman suit.
After the ensuing chaos, the robbers escape, and Gordon and Bullock immediately begin a search party. Batman follows the tracker that he put on Nigma through his batmobile, and follows him to a warehouse downtown. He sneaks in and sees Nigma speaking with Zucco. Zucco is angry at how the night turned out, as Dent was supposed to be killed, but Nigma informs Zucco that while it didn't go according to plan, it still turned out well, as many high ranking Gotham officials witnessed Dent enforce violence on someone, which could have led to many people being killed in the hostage situation. Zucco expresses his distaste in not being able to tell what Nigma is actually planning, and orders one of his men to shoot Nigma. Nigma, however, sets off explosives through his cane, forcing everyone to evacuate. However, Batman catches Zucco before he can escape, and brings him to police headquarters.
Selina Kyle is shown going into her tiny apartment, revealing that she isn't nearly as wealthy as she appears at social events. As she is getting undressed, Nigma reveals himself from behind her, startling her. He tells her that the deal with Zucco is off, as he has been caught by the Batman. Selina asks what this means for her, and he tells her that Zucco will likely tell the police about Nigma in order to avoid jail time, and that he needs Selina to kill him. She refuses, saying that he promised her she'd never have to kill anyone, and Nigma tells her that he doesn't need to remind her who he is working for, and that if he tells them that Selina could be a problem, they'll have her killed in a heartbeat. Selina tells Nigma that she'll never be able to get close to Zucco while he is in police custody, but Nigma tells her that isn't his problem, and seductively touches her body, clearly disgusting her. As Nigma leaves the apartment, he sees several cats, and tells Selina that she is too young to be a cat lady, and she tells him that cats make her feel safe from creeps like him.
At police headquarters, Gordon asks Zucco if the robbers from the party were working for him. Zucco doesn't say anything. Gordon begins to lose his patience, and then Nigma walks in and tells Gordon that he'll take over the questioning. Gordon tells Nigma that this is police business, but Bullock convinces Gordon to allow Nigma to do the questioning. Nigma begins questioning Zucco, but eventually begins playing mind games with him through riddles, messing up Zucco's mentality. After a while, Zucco begins going crazy and loses his temper at Nigma, forcing Gordon and Bullock to intervene. Nigma recommends that Zucco be brought to Arkham, as he is clearly mentally unstable, but Gordon angrily says that Nigma forced him to go crazy like that. Nigma tells Gordon that he shouldn't be challenging his authority, and carries on with the order to send Zucco to Arkham.
As the transfer to Arkham is going on, Batman watches from afar. Soon, the police van carrying Zucco hits a device planted on the street and flips over. Batman rushes over, as he knows this wasn't an accident, but Zucco is shot by a sniper as the police get him out of the vehicle. Gordon orders that a perimeter be set around the area to prevent the sniper from getting away. Nigma, however, after seeing the batmobile, accuses Batman of shooting Zucco. Gordon says that it wasn't the Batman, as if the Batman wanted Zucco dead, then he would have done it before bringing him to the police. Nigma still orders his task force to go after the Batman. The police chase after the batmobile, while the Batman continues his search for the sniper. From afar, Selina is revealed to be the sniper, and hides from Batman. After a long and intense car chase, Batman fails to catch the sniper due to having to avoid the police, frustrating him.
After the failed chase, an angry Dent asks Gordon how Zucco was killed, and Nigma intervenes, saying that it was the Batman. Gordon loses his temper at Nigma and tells him that this whole mess in Gotham started when Nigma showed up and started blaming the Batman for everything. Gordon insists to Nigma that the Batman is cleaning up the streets of Gotham, and that Nigma is only getting in his way. Nigma tells Gordon that he is going to have him arrested for aiding a vigilante, but Dent says that his office was able to acquire evidence that Hamilton Hill had illegally embezzled millions of dollars from the city in order to pay an off-shore bank account that was linked to Nigma. Nigma tells Dent that it doesn't prove anything, but Dent argues that it proves that Nigma had some sort of illegal connection with the mayor just before his murder, and that his office will back a warrant for Nigma's arrest. Gordon then places Nigma under arrest under the charges of embezzlement and murder.
In the batcave, Bruce is running a test on the bullet that killed Zucco, and finds that it is the same exact kind that killed the mayor. He explains to Alfred that this proves that Nigma is behind all of it, since he was with Zucco that night, but Alfred points out that there is no evidence that Nigma and Zucco were together, since Zucco is now dead. However, Bruce gets a news alert that Nigma had been placed uner arrest for the murder of Mayor Hill.
As Gordon gets in his office, he notices that the window is open, and soon realizes that Batman is in the room. Batman tells Gordon about how the bullets used on the mayor were the same ones used on Zucco, and that there was another murder in Gotham a few years ago (Fox's father) in which the same bullets were used. Gordon asks what Batman is implying, and Batman says that he thinks that Nigma is working for someone powerful, and that he wants to know who. Suddenly, a furious Bullock walks in and tells Gordon that Nigma is gone, and that the guards who were nearby were all killed. Batman rushes out to find him.
Nigma breaks in to Selina's apartment once again, and this time tells her that they are out of time. She angrily tells him to get out and that she wants nothing to do with him anymore, but he tells her that isn't a possibility for her, since the people who he works for already know who she is and can control her entire life if they wanted to. She asks what he wants from her, and he tells her that his employer wants the Batman dead, and that since the Gotham police are now after him, he cannot continue with his original plan to play mind games with him. He tells Selina that when he went to see Roman Sionis at Arkham Asylum, he learned that the Batman came after him when Sionis attacked Harvey and Jessica Dent. Selina asks if he is asking her to kill Harvey Dent, but he smiles sinisterly, and then asks her how to solve two problems at once. She shrugs, and he responds, "Eliminate the common denominator."
Bruce is shown entering the batcave after a failed search for Nigma. Alfred then enters and tells him that Jessica is waiting for him upstairs. He goes up to see her, and apologizes for being rude when she came o see him the other day. She tells him not to apologize, and tells him that she hasn't been completely honest with him. He asks her what she is talking about, and she begins to explain to him how he separated himself from everyone else because of his look in his eyes, like she told him before. She then says that she could tell him by his eyes in a room of a million people, even if he was wearing a disguise, or a mask. After she remarks about the mask, he realizes what she is getting at, but wants to hear her say it. After a brief hesitation, she says aloud: "You are the Batman." She explains to him how she understands how he has struggled his entire life with his inner demons, and that the Batman is his way of letting them out. He sits down next to her and expresses his appreciation for her to be able to understand him, as no one else ever has, apart from Alfred. He then kisses her, and she kisses him back passionately, before they make their way into his bedroom and have sex.
After they make love, Jessica tells Bruce that she loves him, and he tells her the same thing. She leaves the mansion with a huge smile, and Bruce looks out the window at her with a smile of his own, but suddenly, he sees her fall to the ground. He rushes outside to help her, along with Alfred, who Bruce tells to call an ambulance. Bruce picks up her body, and sees that she was shot by a sniper. He looks around frantically for the shooter while he weeps for her while embracing her in his arms. After the ambulance arrives and officially declare her dead, Bruce matches the DNA samplings from her blood that made its way onto his hands when he was holding her, and he finds as he suspected that she was shot by Nigma's bullets. Bruce then gets into his Batman suit and drives off to find Nigma.
Gordon and his men are eventually able to track Nigma at a mysterious building, but Batman stops Gordon before he sends a SWAT team in. Batman explains to Gordon that it is him that he wants, and that he likely made it so easy for the cops to find him because he knew that Batman would likely be not far behind. Gordon tells Batman that they are both risking a lot by waiting to send cops in after Nigma, and soon realizes that Batman wants Nigma for personal reasons. Gordon tells the SWAT team to hold off on invading the building, and requests that Batman not do anything that they'll both later regret.
Batman enters the building and searches for Nigma. Nigma's voice is heard by Batman as he taunts him, but Batman is unable to find where he is located. Nigma continues taunting Batman, saying that the only thing driving him is revenge, not justice. He also makes remarks about Jessica's death, and says that her brother is taking it particularly hard while laughing. Batman is enraged at Nigma's mocking of the situation, and still struggles to find out where he is hiding.
Outside the building, Bullock pressures Gordon to send SWAT in, but Gordon is hesitant. Back inside, Batman thinks that he finds Nigma, but it turns out to be a decoy, while the real Nigma attacks Batman from behind, stabbing him with a knife in his cane. Nigma tells Batman that he has proved to be quite an annoyance for several people in high positions, including the people he works for. Nigma then goes on to say that his employers are going to murder a lot of people, and that Batman is not going to be able to do a thing about it. Batman is infuriated, and works through his pain to attack Nigma. He beats him savagely, and almost to death, before stopping himself. Batman commands Nigma to tell him who he is working for, but Nigma tells him that it doesn't matter, and that plans have been set in motion that he cannot stop. Batman brings up the bullets that were used to kill Jessica, Hill, Zucco, and Eugene Fox, and that he will trace them eventually and find out who these people are. Nigma laughs and says that while Batman may have been able to prove that the bullets were the same, but he will never be able to trace them back, just like he wasn't able to save Jessica. Batman is enraged and beats up Nigma again, before he hears SWAT enter. Batman leaves the building, and the police arrest Nigma.
Harvey and his fiance are seen crying together as they stand over Jessica's body at the morgue, and Batman looks on through binocolars from a roof across the street. Meanwhile, back at police headquarters, Gordon goes through Nigma's belongings for evidence, and finds a mysterious chip implanted in his cell phone.
Later, Bruce visits Jessica's grave and leaves a rose, before visiting his parents' grave and doing the same thing. Meanwhile, Harvey, who is clearly depressed, sits alone in his office with a bottle of wine, and pulls out a gun from his desk drawer. He points it at his head, but then drops it and pulls out a coin to decide whether or not he will shoot himself, but the scene cuts before the coins lands.
Gordon and Batman meet on the roof of police headquarters, and Gordon tells him that Nigma still won't say anything about who he is working for. Batman tells Gordon how Nigma said that many people are going to be murdered by his employers, and they need to find out how to stop it. Gordon says that he might have a way, and gives Batman the chip from Nigma's phone, saying that he is sure that Batman will know what to do with it. Batman takes it and jumps from the roof.
During the end credits, a package is left at the prison for Nigma. A security guard brings it to his cell, and Nigma opens the box, triggering a bomb to go off, presumably killing him. The person who left the package then dials a number and says that Nigma is dead. The person being called is then shown hanging up the phone: Amanda Waller (Nia Long). Waller then opens her computer, which is shown to have a checkmate symbol on the desktop, and she mutters to herself: "Let's get this started, then."
It was announced shortly after The Batman was released that a sequel was in development at Warner Bros., while they would also move forward with Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash, and Green Arrow projects. Armie Hammer signed on to film at least two more sequels. For the casting of Edward Nigma, Anorofsky had wanted to cast Christoph Waltz, but the studio had felt that he was too old for the part. Woody Harrelson was chosen for the role among a list of actors that reportedly included Mark Strong, Jude Law, and Billy Crudup.