George Clooney is talking more smack about his iconic performance as superhero billionaire Bruce Wayne in “Batman & Robin.”
While on a junket to promote his new film “The Tender Bar” — directing Ben Affleck in the starring role — Variety couldn’t help but ask the 60-year-old filmmaker about his nipple-enhanced 1997 turn as Batman, which most Hollywood insiders know can trigger the usually affable Clooney.
It seems “Batman & Robin” is far too crass for his wife Amal’s captivating eyes, according to her husband, as she revealed that George “won’t let me watch” it.
“There are certain films I just go, ‘I want my wife to have some respect for me,’ ” George explained. He also added that he would be concerned about the reaction of the couple’s twins, Alexander and Ella, should they want to give it a peek.
“It’s bad when your 4-year-old kid goes, ‘This sucks,’ ” Clooney joked. “That could be painful.”
Clooney starred as Bruce Wayne/Batman in Joel Schumacher’s campy 1997 classic, alongside Chris O’Donnell (Robin), Alicia Silverstone (Batgirl), Uma Thurman (Poison Ivy) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (Mr. Freeze). The Oscar-winning actor has long gone on the record to denounce his part in the oft-derided flick, despite seeing career redemption in the years that followed.
To the question of why he won’t be appearing in the upcoming DC Comics flick “The Flash,” which sees many iterations of heroes in the multi-verse come together, Clooney blamed himself for never getting a call.
“They didn’t ask me,” he told Variety. “When you destroy a franchise the way I did, usually they look the other way when ‘The Flash’ comes by.”
Out in 2022, “The Flash” has already tapped Affleck, 49, and Michael Keaton, 70, both of whom have previously starred as the Caped Crusader. But Clooney, apparently, isn’t on that list.
Interviews with the “Ocean’s Eleven” actor have turned into cinematic roasts lately, as the press can’t stop prodding Clooney about his legendarily panned performance. In December 2020, he told shock jockey Howard Stern that it “physically hurts” him to rewatch his “terrible” work in the film.
“The truth of the matter is, I was bad in it,” he said at the time, putting no blame on screenwriter Akiva Goldsman and the late director Schumacher, who died in June 2020.
“It’s a big, monster machine,” Clooney said of the blockbuster production. At the time he was “just an actor getting an acting job,” he continued. “I couldn’t have done that one differently.”
However, the pain apparently can be motivating.
In 2013, Deadline reported that Clooney preferred to keep a portrait of himself as Batman “prominently displayed” in his office, “as a cautionary reminder of what can happen when you make movies solely for commercial reasons.”