'I'm sorry... I can't do it... not now, not ever!' These were the words uttered by Robert De Niro after he was offered the role of The Joker in the new Batman-vehicle projected for sometime in 2008, with Christian Bale and Michael Caine reprising their roles of the Caped Crusader and Bruce Wayne's butler, Alfred, respectively.
De Niro looked odds on favourite to secure the role after Micheal Keaton (THE best Batman ever!), Robin Williams, and George Lopez all turned it down due to other commitments (Keaton is contracted to 'First Daughter 2', Williams to the big screen debut (finally!) of 'Mork And Mindy' and Lopez is in talks for the title role in a remake of 'Cinderfella')... but he turned it down at the 11th hour for what (to this writer) boils down to a ridiculous reason: he does NOT want to wear the costume (AND make up!) Jack Nicholson wore in the 1989 classic because it stinks!
The role is still up for grabs as we speak although the director and the producer are both confident their next choice (their ONLY available choice!) will be a natural for the part since he is, in fact, a born joker, albeit not intentionally... arise, Sir Keanu Reeves!