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The best part of the Batman movies was also the most challenging

Michael Keaton's Batman movies are among the best DC movies of all time, and for good reason. But one of the 1989 film's most memorable elements was a struggle.

Michael Keaton as Batman

Michael Keaton‘s Batman movies are among the best movies of the superhero genre, but it wasn’t an easy journey. Before there was the DC Universe, there was Danny Elfman, the man who composed the iconic score for Tim Burton’s ‘80s movie and its two sequels. He opened up about the process of composing the Batman movies in an interview with GQ, wherein he admitted that it wasn’t as easy as it appeared.

“I’ve never done anything harder than Batman because, first off, I had to prove myself,” he explained. “You know, it’s like, OK, he’s the quirky comedy guy, and here I am doing this Batman movie. Understandably, I think they were like, ‘We need somebody who knows how to do this kind of music.’ But nobody knew what kind of music it was. There really was no superhero music. There was just Superman. And we said we know we don’t want it to be Superman, John Williams.”

He continued, “There was an element with the producer and the studio of wanting it to be a pop score. There was definitely this moment of like, ‘Danny, we want you to collaborate with Prince and co-write the score.’ And I go, ‘I can’t do that. People [said], ‘You really said that?’ I love Prince, but not for that score. I already knew what the score was, and I knew that if I collaborated, he’d be writing tunes, and I’d be orchestrating his tunes, and I would be essentially a glorified arranger rather than a composer. You know, because he was world-famous, and I was still nothing. I had to walk away.”

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“I was so depressed,” Elfman added. “I felt like I just blew up my own career. And then a month later, I got the call saying, ‘Danny, you’re back on. We gotta get moving. Come on, come on.’ It’s like, this gamble paid off. But it was a miserable period of time. On the other hand, I already heard the music in my head. I knew what it was, and I was determined that that was gonna be the score.”

And the rest, as you know, is history. To see Keaton’s triumphant return as Batman, here’s how to watch The Flash. Or, check out our guides to the Batman actors ranked, Brave and the Bold release date, The Batman 2 release date, and all the other new movies coming your way this year.