January 03, 2012 11:44am PT by Erin Carlson
Latest 'Dark Knight' Stills Revealed
Two new stills from The Dark Knight Rises have surfaced online: one of Batman, wielding a strange-looking weapon, and another of Bane, shielding his chest in an intense pose.
Christian Bale reprises his role as the caped crusader in Christopher Nolan's latest Batman installment, scheduled for release in July. The English actor Tom Hardy portrays brand-new masked villain Bane, whose muffled speech has been cause for concern from fans of the franchise, who complained they could not hear anything he said during the eight-minute preview released last month. (Warner Bros. put out its official trailer Dec. 19.)
In the film, Bane's nefarious actions bring Gotham City into a near-Apocalyptic state, but Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) has a major stake in the pandemonium as well. In a key, not-yet-screened scene detailed by The Los Angeles Times, the paper wrote: "A ruthless madman named Bane has ripped away any sense of security and the citizens, haggard and clutching suitcases with refugee anxiety, sit behind barbed wire waiting to see what will blow up next. A hooded prisoner is dragged — it's Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) one of Gotham's most famous faces, but the eyes of the crowd go instead to the woman in black standing at the top of the staircase." (She is Hathaway's Selina Kyle, sporting stilettos and protective goggles.)
In December, the studio unveiled the film's grim poster art: it features a broken Batman alongside the tagline, "The Legend Ends."