LEGO Batman Director Talks About The Film's Epic Ending

Spoiler alert for those who have yet to see the highly anticipated LEGO Batman Movie: the film's ending is, like everything, awesome. As Zach Galifianakis' Joker prepares his final assault on Gotham City, he opens the Phantom Zone, releasing villains not just from the Batman universe but from all over the pop culture landscape, including King Kong, Sauron, the Wicked Witch, Gremlins, Lord Voldemort, and more. Director Chris McKay sat down with Entertainment Weekly to talk about the process of making the scene, saying that he likely "drove people crazy" in pulling the difficult sequence off.

"You need an army of lawyers and producers who are willing to run around and do all the hard work of finding out all the rights-holders," he said of licensing all the characters. "I definitely kept a lot of coordinators, producers, and lawyers busy on this movie."

One of McKay's big gets was Billy Dee Williams as Two-Face, something which he announced on his Twitter page in November. McKay saw landing Williams, who many expected to play the villain in 1995's Batman Forever, as a way of righting a wrong in the character's history.

"As a kid, when I saw the Tim Burton Batman movie, I knew enough about all the characters that when I saw they cast [Williams] as Harvey Dent, I was so excited because I thought they're going to play this long game where in the next movie or two movies down the line, he would show up and have this great arc from good guy to bad guy," he said. "And then when the third movie came around and not only had the cast changed, but there was no arc— it's just suddenly Tommy Lee-Jones as Two-Face— I was really bummed out. So to be able to cast somebody in that way was great. I mean, the first thing [Williams] said when he showed up on set was, 'Oh, I finally get to play the role I was hoping I was going to play.' I felt really proud about that. It felt good to fulfill something from my childhood that always felt like a missed opportunity or just a bummer."

McKay said that there were some villains who missed out on the chance to join the fun, including Kathy Bates' Annie Wilkes from Misery, Sherlock Holmes' nemesis Moriarty, Daniel Day-Lewis' gangster from Gangs of New York, David Carrradine's Bill from Kill Bill, and HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey.

"At a certain point, though, you have to weigh what characters the kid's going to get," he said. "In LEGO, it's sometimes hard to get a really quick interpretation of something. I was already worried that we weren't doing enough with some characters... Maybe in future movies, we'll try to bring more characters in."

Moving past the film's dramatic ending, McKay is already talking about what could be next for the character, saying that there is "definitely a part" for him in the upcoming LEGO Movie 2, which is due out in 2019. While he couldn't confirm that Batman would for sure be back, he did say there was a chance.

"There are going to be the repercussions of what's happened in [LEGO Batman]," he said. "If you agree that he went through some change, there's more stuff in store for Batman in LEGO 2."

If you just can't wait for more LEGO action, check out the first trailer for the upcoming LEGO Ninjago Movie or read up on the untold truth of The LEGO Movie.