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Cotillard and Gordon-Levitt join The Dark Knight Rises

Either putting months of speculation to rest, or opening up a whole new round of speculation—depending on your point of view—Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt have both officially come to terms with Warner Bros. to appear in Christopher Nolan’s third and final Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises.

Negotiations with Cotillard first began back in February (although rumors of her possible involvement went back much further than that), while Gordon-Levitt was confirmed to be in the film, although an official deal had not yet been reached. According to the press release issued today, both are officially on board.

“When you collaborate with people as talented as Marion and Joe, it comes as no surprise that you would want to repeat the experience.” Director Christopher Nolan said.

But here’s the part that will make the internets go wild—Cotillard will not play Talia al Ghul, and Gordon-Levitt will not play Alberto Falcone.

According to the press release, Cotillard will play “Miranda Tate, a Wayne Enterprises board member eager to help a still-grieving Bruce Wayne resume his father’s philanthropic endeavors for Gotham. Gordon-Levitt will play John Blake, a Gotham City beat cop assigned to special duty under the command of Commissioner Gordon.”

“I immediately thought of them for the roles of Miranda and Blake, and I am looking forward to working with both of them again.” Nolan said.

Here’s where it gets interesting. For months now, Nolan has said that he was casting two female leads in the film—one of which would be a love interest, the other would be a villain. A few months ago, Anne Hathaway was confirmed as Selina Kyle, aka Catwoman. In the comics, Catwoman has an odd relationship with Batman, sometimes romantic, sometimes antagonistic. So which of the women is the love interest and which is the villain?

With Gordon-Levitt, the news that he would play Alberto Falcone, the son of jailed crime lord Carmine Falcone (played by Tom Wilkinson in Batman Begins), was almost immediately contradicted, so that is less of  a surprise, although it does seem a fairly minor part for the actor. Odds are Nolan wouldn’t cast such an up-and-coming actor to play “that guy”, so there is almost certainly more to the role.

In fact, it is still possible that Cotillard plays Talia al Ghul and Gordon-Levitt plays Falcone, but both begin the movie under false identities. Because Ra’s al Ghul (who will appear in the film in a flashback starring Josh Pence as al Ghul) knew the identity of Bruce Wayne, it would be very possible for his daughter to use that information secretly. Of course that is just guesswork, and it could turn out to be something totally different.  Nolan does enjoy playing with the minds of eager fans, and misdirection is a big part of his repertoire.

So have at it intertubes. What do you think? Is there more to the story, or do we just not have enough information yet? Sound off below!

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