According to the Denver Post, Dark Knight Rises star Christian Bale flew to Aurora, Colorado to visit with victims of the July 20 shooting that took place at a midnight screening for the film. The paper holds that Bale spent two and a half hours at the Medical Center of Aurora, meeting with five patients of the hospital who had been injured. Another two patients traveled to meet Bale from nearby Swedish Medical Center. Likewise, Bale and his wife met with a number of police officers, hospital workers and first responders who came to the aid of shooting victims immediately following the tragedy.
We don’t want to sound cynical, but this is exactly what you’d expect in the wake of such an event. The production company backing the film would want to ensure it looks as helpful and caring as possible, so of course it would send its biggest star out to shake hands with the common people, right?
Well, actually no. That’s the cool part of this story. According to Warner Bros. representatives the studio had nothing to do with it. Apparently Bale just opted to jump on a flight to Colorado as soon as he could to help ease the suffering of victims. When he arrived he even asked hospital officials to keep his presence out of the media. Granted, they didn’t do a great job of that, but it is heartening for the rest of us to hear that the man who we’ve spent the last decade most closely associating with the identity of Batman legitimately cares about the common people, despite his massive wealth, good looks and worldwide fame.
Of course there’s always the chance that this is a labyrinthine PR plot designed to elicit exactly this sort of pro-Bale reaction, but that possibility just makes us sad. We’d much rather cling to the idea that Christian Bale is the kind of guy who would hop a jet and fly to a podunk town in the Rockies just because it might make somebody smile. That almost takes the sting out of the glum realization that Bale probably doesn’t spend his evenings perching on gargoyles and keeping watch over the sleeping masses.