LOS ANGELES, Jan. 4 (UPI) -- Michael Keaton explained why he turned down playing Batman for a third time in 1995's Batman Forever -- "It sucked," Keaton told The Hollywood Reporter in a new interview about his reaction to seeing the script.
"I knew it was in trouble when he [Schumacher] said, 'Why does everything have to be so dark?'" the actor continued about incoming director Joel Schumacher who was replacing previous franchise helmer Tim Burton and his more gothic vision seen in 1989's Batman and 1992's Batman Returns.
Keaton would drop out of playing the iconic Caped Crusader and was replaced by Val Kilmer. While a box office success, Batman Forever is now looked down upon as being too cartoony and colorful along with its critically panned sequel, 1997's Batman and Robin starring George Clooney in the title role.
Keaton has avoided the superhero genre he helped launch until now, signing on to portray high-flying villain the Vulture in Marvel and Sony's upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming, due in theaters July 7, 2017.