With filming for Matt Reeves' The Batman underway, set leaks are starting to roll in. From the official camera test and Batmobile reveal to the unofficial motorcycle photos depicting a more rugged Batsuit, we're beginning to piece together what the Robert Pattinson era has in store for the Caped Crusader. The latest leaks also hint at the return of Gotham's most notorious mental health facility.
An anonymous Reddit user claiming to reside in Liverpool posted the film crew was currently working in the catacombs beneath St. George's Hall in the English city. While the Reddit leak didn't contain any pictures of cast or crew, pictures of the site bring to mind Arkham Asylum. If you're curious what the catacombs look like, the Liverpool Echo has a load of images and a video tour of what it calls "one of the city's best-kept secrets."
That foreboding architecture screams Arkham Asylum, which makes sense. As the film's going to star both The Riddler and The Penguin, Two-Face, and Catwoman, there's no likelier place to find all these villains together than in Arkham Asylum itself.
In addition to the Liverpool leak, there's another possible clue towards Arkham's new look: the film's IMDB page lists Hartwood Psychiatric Hospital as another filming location. This abandoned mental hospital near Shotts, Scotland looks perfectly creepy, and the details inside look straight out of a zombie movie. It's possible that the exterior shots will be taken at the Scotland site, while interior filming will be done on-location in Liverpool.
While a former asylum seems the logical choice to use as Arkham Asylum, yet another set leak may reveal it's instead another creepy Gotham building: Gotham Orphanage. Scottish newspaper Glasgow Live reported a sign was posted outside the hospital when The Batman shot there late last month, reading "Investing in Our Future Gotham Orphanage."
So what does this mean for The Batman? Both sites have a run-down feel that's very much in line with how Gotham is portrayed. Sure, it's meant to be inspired by New York City, but there's a grittiness to it that's much more in line with the Gothic elements in both these locations.
The locations also bring to mind a major Batman property: Gotham by Gaslight, a one-shot graphic novel set in Victorian-era Gotham in which the Caped Crusader encounters Jack the Ripper. That story also involves both orphans (aside from Bruce Wayne himself) and Arkham Asylum, so The Batman may have also looked there for inspiration for the mood and vibe of the upcoming film.
The Batman opens in theaters on June 21, 2021.