christopher nolan batman Nolan Looking for a Leading Lady for The Dark Knight RisesIt’s been rumored for quite some time that Christopher Nolan was looking for a new leading lady for the Batman franchise, since Rachel Dawes went the way of the buffalo in The Dark Knight. The bigger question was the new lead going to be a love interest, or a villain, or even both? It seems that it’s going to be both! Deadline is rporting that  Nolan has his eyes on six different actresses for the parts, one of which is a new love interest for Bruce Wayne, and the other is a villain. Who are the actresses? It looks as though Nolan has set his standards on the higher end, which I am fine with. Rachel Weisz, Naomi Watts, Blake Lively, Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway and Kiera Knightly are all up for two highly coveted roles.

Movieline is now reporting that three more actresses are in the sites of Nolan: Tanit Phoenix, who starred in Lost Boys 3: The Tribe, Marion Cotillard, who partly stole the screen in Nolan’s Inception and Piper Parabo, who has also worked with Nolan on The Prestige.

As with Tom Hardy’s role, who is suspected of signing on to the film with out reading a script, the roles of the two female have yet to be disclosed. The two that immediately come to mind are Selina Kyle, better known to most as Catwoman, and Talia Al Ghul, both of whom have portrayed a villain as well as a love interest for Bruce Wayne. Talia would be an interesting set up, being that her father was the main baddie in Batman Begins, which sets up a sort of revenge story, if she were to be the villain. As for Catwoman, she pretty much splits the fans opinions as to whether she should be included in the film. I’d like to see what Nolan could do with the character, adding a more “real world” elements to the character.

The Dark Knight Rises is expected to begin production in April of next year, with a release set for summer of 2012.