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Hard to believe, but Michael Caine at one point was going to turn down Christopher Nolan’s offer to co-star as Alfred in 2005’s “Batman Begins”. Turns out he didn’t, and as they say, the rest is history.
Speaking to the LATimes about his experience working on Nolan’s three Batman films, Caine was asked about the final installment’s ending, which found Alfred going back to his favorite European cafe and spotting, across the room, Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) having an afternoon lunch with a lady companion who happened to be Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway). This, after Batman was supposedly killed in a nuclear blast, having risked his life to save his beloved Gotham City.
There have been a lot of speculation about that scene — was it all in Aflred’s head? The wishful thinking of an old man who has just lost, in essence, a son? Or was it real?
For Caine, there is no ambiguity to the scene:
They were there. They were real. There was no imagination. They were real and he was with Anne, the cat lady, and I was happy ever after for him as I told him during the picture.
Haha, he calls Hathaway’s character “the cat lady”. That’s such an old guy thing of Caine to say.
In any case, there you have it, what Caine thought of the ending. I get the feeling Nolan isn’t so certain, and as with his ending for “Inception”, would rather leave it up to you. That is, until Warner Bros. reboots or continues the franchise a few years from now. I guess we’d have to know for sure one way or another then, right?