Gotham City ( /ˈɡɒθəm/ GOTH-əm) is a fictional U.S. city appearing in DC Comics, best known as the home of Batman. Batman's place of residence was first identified as Gotham City in Batman #4 (Winter 1940). Since first being mentioned, Gotham has primarily taken elements from New York City, but also from Boston, Cincinnati, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Toronto, Vancouver, London and Chicago. Frank Miller has referred to Gotham City as New York City after dark.
Origin of name
Writer Bill Finger, on the naming of the city and the reason for changing Batman's locale from New York City to a fictional city said, "Originally I was going to call Gotham City 'Civic City'. Then I tried 'Capital City', then 'Coast City'. Then I flipped through the New York City phone book and spotted the name 'Gotham Jewelers' and said, 'That's it,' Gotham City. We didn't call it New York because we wanted anybody in any city to identify with it."
"Gotham" had long been a well-known nickname for New York City even prior to Batman's 1939 introduction, which explains why "Gotham Jewelers" and many other businesses in New York City have the word "Gotham" in them. The nickname was popularized in the nineteenth century, having been first attached to New York by Washington Irving in the November 11, 1807 edition of his Salmagundi, a periodical which lampooned New York culture and politics. Irving took the name from the village of Gotham, Nottinghamshire, England, a place that, according to folklore, was inhabited by fools. The village's name derives from Old English gat 'goat' and ham 'home', literally "homestead where goats are kept", and is pronounced "goat 'em", /ˈɡoʊtəm/ goat-əm (c.f. Chatham, /ˈtʃætəm/ CHAT-əm, a similar name which has not undergone a t → th pronunciation shift). In contrast, "Gotham" as used for New York or in the comics is pronounced /ˈɡɒθəm/ GOTH-əm, like the word Goth.
In Detective Comics #880, the Joker mentions to Batman that Gotham means "heaven for goats".
In Swamp Thing #53, Alan Moore wrote a fictional history for Gotham City that other writers have generally followed. According to Moore's tale, a Norwegian mercenary founded Gotham City and the British later took it over—a story that parallels the founding of New York by the Dutch (as New Amsterdam) and later takeover by the British. During the American Revolutionary War, Gotham City was the site of a major battle (paralleling the Battle of Brooklyn in the American Revolution). This was detailed in Rick Veitch's Swamp Thing #85 featuring Tomahawk. Rumors held it to be the site of various occult rites.
Shadowpact #5 by Bill Willingham expanded upon Gotham's occult heritage by depicting a being who has slept for 40,000 years beneath the land upon which Gotham City was built. Strega, the being's servant, says that the "dark and often cursed character" of the city was influenced by the being who now uses the name "Doctor Gotham."
During the Civil War, it was defended by an ancestor of The Penguin, Fighting of the Union Army Col. Nathan Cobblepot, in the Legendary Battle of Gotham Heights. In Gotham Underground #2 by Frank Tieri, Tobias Whale claims that 19th century Gotham was run by five rival gangs, until the first "masks" appeared, eventually forming a gang of their own. It is not clear if these were vigilantes or costumed criminals.
Many storylines have added more events to Gotham's history, at the same time greatly affecting the city and its people. Perhaps the greatest in impact was a long set of serial storylines, which started with Ra's al Ghul releasing a debilitating virus called the "Clench" during the Contagion storyline. As that arc wrapped, the city was beginning to recover, only to suffer an earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter Scale in Cataclysm. This resulted in the federal government cutting Gotham off from the rest of the United States in No Man's Land. This trio of storylines allowed writers the freedom to redefine the nature and mood of the city. The result suggested a harder city with a more resilient, resourceful, and cynical populace; a more dramatic and varied architecture; and more writing possibilities by attributing new locales to the rebuilding of the city.
The name "Gotham City" is generally associated with DC Comics, although it also appears in the first Mr. Scarlet story by France Herron and Jack Kirby from Wow Comics #1. Kirby historian Greg Theakston notes that this was published December 13, 1940, shortly before Batman #4 was published.
In terms of atmosphere, Batman writer and editor Dennis O'Neil has said that, figuratively, "Batman's Gotham City is Manhattan below Fourteenth Street at eleven minutes past midnight on the coldest night in November."
Gotham City's atmosphere took on a lighter tone in the comics of the 1950s and part of the 1960s, similar to the tone of Batman stories of that era. However, by the early 1970s the tone of the city, along with that of the stories, had become grittier. Most recently, the portrayal of Gotham is that of a dark and foreboding metropolis rife with crime, grime, corruption, and a deep-seated sense of urban decay in the parts of the city not rejuvenated post-No Man's Land.
Recently, Batman scribe Grant Morrison has brought about a more optimistic interpretation of Gotham City. " If Gotham was so bloody awful, no one normal would live there and there'd be no one to protect from criminals. If Gotham really was an open sewer of crime and corruption, every story set there would serve to demonstrate the complete and utter failure of Batman's mission, which isn't really the message we want to send, is it? You've got Batman and all his allies as well as Commissioner Gordon and the city still exudes a vile miasma of darkness and death? I can't buy that. It's simply not realistic and flies in the face of in-story logic (and you know I like my comics realistic!) so my artists and I have taken a different tack and we want to show the cool, vibrant side of Gotham, the energy and excitement that would draw people to live and visit there."
Different artists have depicted Gotham City in different ways. They often base their interpretations on various real architectural periods and styles with exaggerated characteristics, such as massively multitiered flying buttresses on Gothic cathedrals or the huge Art Deco and Art Nouveau statuary seen in Tim Burton's movie version. Cyberpunk, Japanese, and Greek elements were presented in Joel Schumacher's series of films. The Christopher Nolan depiction of Gotham has featured distinct Chicago architecture and is cartographically based on the canon DC map of Gotham. Batman Begins features a CGI augmented version of Chicago while The Dark Knight more directly features Chicago infrastructure and architecture.
Within the Batman mythos, the person cited as being influential in promoting the unique architecture of Gotham City during the pre-American Civil War era was Judge Solomon Wayne, Bruce Wayne's ancestor. His campaign to reform Gotham came to a head when he met a young architect named Cyrus Pinkney. Wayne commissioned Pinkney to design and to build the first "Gotham Style" structures in what became the center of the city's financial district. The "Gotham Style" idea of the writers matches parts of the Gothic Revival in style and timing. In a 1992 storyline, a man obsessed with Pinkney's architecture blew up several Gotham buildings in order to reveal the Pinkney structures they had hidden; the editorial purpose behind this was to transform the city depicted in the comics to resemble the designs created by Anton Furst for the 1989 Batman film.
Arkham Asylum: Living Hell mentions the "Sprang Act", which forbids Gothamite businesses from advertising on rooftops. It was passed after minor villain Humpty Dumpty over-wound the mainspring of the city hall clock, causing the hour hand to jump off and knock one of the billboards down, causing a chain reaction.
After No Man's Land, Lex Luthor took the challenge of rebuilding Gotham City after the events of Cataclysm. Many of Gotham's old Art-deco and Gothic structures were replaced with modern glass skyscrapers and buildings.
Police and corruption
A common theme in stories set in Gotham is the rampant and recurring corruption within the city's civil authorities and infrastructure, most notably within the Gotham City Police Department. During stories set early in Batman's career (most notably Batman: Year One), Commissioner Gillian B. Loeb was depicted as having his hands in many pockets. However, Batman found evidence for conspiracy charges, forcing Loeb to resign his position. Later stories depicted subsequent commissioners as also being corruptible, or open to various forms of influence. In other stories, Batman has had to take on crooked cops, either acting in collusion with supervillains, working for the mob, or on their own. Later stories, featuring James Gordon as the new Commissioner, show the two characters often uniting to purge corruption from the force. Gordon was the commissioner for about 9 to 10 years of continuity, then retired, handing the police force over to his replacement, Commissioner Akins. Recent stories have returned Gordon to the position of Commissioner, unfortunately to find corruption taking a greater hold since his departure.
- Unified Crime Family
- Black Mask - During the events of Batman: War Games, Black Mask gains control over all gangs in Gotham City. He works with The Society to kill Batman. He is eventually killed by Catwoman and a power vacuum leads to a series of gang wars. Recently a new Black Mask has returned in an effort to reunify the Gotham gangs.
- Great White - Warren "The Great White Shark" White becomes the successor to Black Mask's crime empire, successfully running all crime in Gotham from inside Arkham Asylum. During Intergang's bid for power, Great White is beaten and hidden behind a door in Blackgate prison in order to keep him out of the way. After freeing Arkham's inmates the new Black Mask takes control over Warren and his men.
- Crime Families
- Falcone Crime Family (Italian) - Run by Carmine "The Roman" Falcone, who maintained a stranglehold over all of Gotham City's crime before the rise of 'masks.' He is murdered by Two-Face and his daughter, Sofia Gigante takes control, however upon her death and the murder of many other family members, the family loses its grasp over the city.
- Galante Crime Family (Italian)- Control the East side of Gotham. Taken over by Tobias Whale.
- Maroni Crime Family (Italian) - Headed by Luigi "Big Lou" Maroni until his death where his son Sal Maroni takes control of the family. He is responsible for scarring Harvey Dent and is eventually murdered while in prison.
- Odessa Crime Family (Ukrainian) - Arms dealers taken over by Tobias Whale.
- Riley Crime Family (Irish) - Run by Peyton Riley's father Sean Riley until his death. It is implied Johnny Sabatino kills him.
- Sabatino Crime Family (Italian) - The first crime family of Gotham. Johnny Sabatino was married off to Peyton Riley as a sign of peace between the Irish and Italian mobs. Their marriage was loveless and he tries to kill her. Peyton returns with Scarface and tries to kill Johnny and they both fall into the water after a struggle and disappear.
- Dimitrov Crime Family (Russian) - Run by Yuri Dimitrov (The Russian) who happens to always be at war with the Maroni Crime Family.
- Ghost Dragons (Chinese) - Run by King Snake. Lynx was assigned as their field leader and eventually killed King Snake to gain control over the gang. Lynx was accidentally beheaded by one of her own gang members.
- Golden Dragons - Gotham branch of the Hong Kong based gang. Their leader is the new Lynx
- Intergang - Led by Bruno Mannheim, Intergang employs Johnny Stitches to take control over the Gotham City underworld. They successfully take down Penguin's gang and buy out Tobias Whale to gain full control. It is yet to be seen how they will deal with Black Mask's claim to dominance.
- Penguin's Gang - Run through the Penguin's Iceberg Lounge. The Penguin was once the premier gang power in Gotham. Ousted by Intergang but was restored by Batman. He is currently fighting for dominance over Two-Face's gang.
- The Sprang Bridge Soldiers - Control Robbinsville, almost taken over by Jason Todd
- The Blackgaters - Briefly taken over by Jason Todd in an attempt to unite the gangs against the Underground
- Hanoi Ten (Vietnamese) - Rivals of the Golden Dragons
- Batboys -
- Five Fingers -
- Sirens -
- Blue Flu Gang -
- The Burnley Town Massive -
Gotham City's geography, like other fictional cities' geographies in the DC Universe, has varied over the decades, because of changing writers, editors, and storylines. The majority of appearances place Gotham on the Northeastern coast of the United States, where New York City is located. Also, Manhattan is an island in the Northeastern United States, which corresponds to maps depicting Gotham City. However, the 1990 Atlas of the DC Universe states that Gotham is located in New Jersey, across the Delaware Bay from Metropolis, which would place it on the southern coast of New Jersey. Like Gotham, Metropolis' location has also varied over the years. The distance between Gotham and Metropolis has varied greatly over the years, with depictions of the two ranging from being hundreds of miles apart to Gotham and Metropolis being shown as twin cities on opposite sides of Delaware Bay, with Gotham City in New Jersey and Metropolis in Delaware.
Historically, "Gotham" has been a nickname for New York City originating on November 11, 1807 by Washington Irving in his Salmagundi Papers. For most of Batman's publication history in comics, Gotham has been assumed to be a New York City analogue. Frank Miller has said that "Metropolis is New York in the daytime; Gotham City is New York at night." DC Comics publisher and former president Paul Levitz says that Gotham is "New York from 14th Street down, the older buildings, more brick-and-mortar as opposed to steel-and-glass." The late New York Times journalist William Safire described Gotham City as "New York below 14th Street, from SoHo to Greenwich Village, the Bowery, Little Italy, Chinatown, and the sinister areas around the base of the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges.
Film adaptations have varied: Tim Burton's Gotham was based primarily on New York, while the films directed by Christopher Nolan have shown a Gotham more closely based on Chicago. In Nolan's films Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, the license plates of the cars registered in Gotham strongly resemble those of Illinois but display "Gotham" as the state. Additionally, during a car chase in Batman Begins one of the cops reports that Batman is travelling west on I-78. Nolan has stated that Chicago is the basis of his portrayal of Gotham, and the majority of both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight were filmed there. However, New York City's influence can be seen in "The Dark Knight," when the Joker refers to Gotham's "bridge and tunnel" crowd, which is a New York nickname for commuters utilizing New York City's bridge and tunnel system. The Dark Knight Rises is being filmed in several US cities with the intention of depicting more of the various islands and districts of Gotham.
In the television series Young Justice, during the episode entitled "Schooled", an onscreen map indicates that Gotham City is located in south-west Connecticut which is relatively close to New York City. However, as the show takes place on Earth-16, it is unclear whether Gotham is in Connecticut only on Earth-16, or if it is located in that state across the worlds of the Multiverse.
Many comic book series and characters are set in Gotham City. Some of the most prominent characters directly connected to Batman whose adventures are set in Gotham are Nightwing, Huntress, Barbara Gordon and most recently Batwoman.
Other DC characters have also been depicted to be living in Gotham, including Jason Blood, Ragman, The Question, Plastic Man, Zatara and Zatanna, Simon Dark, and Tommy Monaghan, the anti-hero Hitman. The superhero teams Section 8 and the Justice Society of America have also been shown operating in Gotham City.
Within the DC Universe continuity, Batman is not the first hero in Gotham. Stories featuring Alan Scott, the Golden Age Green Lantern, set before and during World War II depict Scott living in Gotham, and later depictions show him running his Gotham Broadcasting Corporation. Additionally, the Justice Society of America, Doctor Fate, and the Golden Age Black Canary have been depicted as operating in Gotham. Black Canary's daughter, the Modern Age Black Canary, is based in Gotham through much of the Birds of Prey series. Arella (formerly Angela Roth), a supporting character in Teen Titans and mother of Titan member Raven, is shown in flashback to have resided in Gotham City as a teenager. A young Michael Carter would call the city home in the 25th century.
DC's The New 52 reboot of All Star Western takes place in an Old West-styled Gotham. Jonah Hex and Amadeus Arkham are among this version of Gotham's inhabitants.
Apart from Gotham's superhero residents, the residents of the city feature in a back-up series in Detective Comics called Tales of Gotham City and in two limited series called Gotham Nights. Additionally, the Gotham City Police Department is the focus of the series Gotham Central, as well as the mini-series Gordon's Law, Bullock's Law, and GCPD.
Mayors in the comic books
Several mayors of Gotham have appeared in the comic book series that collectively form the "Batman Family" of titles:
Officers of the law in the comics
Notable areas, landmarks, institutions and businesses
Gotham City is a major economic center within the United States of the DC Universe. Its important industries include manufacturing; shipping; finance; fine arts, represented by its numerous museums, galleries, and jewelers; and the production of giant novelty props. In addition to its commercial seaport, it also supports a naval shipyard.
Major businesses based in Gotham City include its most noteworthy corporation: Wayne Enterprises, which specializes in various industrial aspects and advanced technological research and development. Its charitable division, The Wayne Foundation, is a major supporter to the city's major charity, arts and research endeavors.
Noteworthy newspapers in Gotham City include the Gotham Gazette and the Gotham Globe. In the Silver Age comics, the editor-in-chief of Metropolis newspaper The Daily Planet, Perry White, had once worked for the Gazette early in his career.
A statue of Green Lantern is dedicated to him in Gotham central.
It also has facilities such as Ace Chemicals.
Main article: Arkham Asylum
Arkham Asylum is the primary but involuntary residence of many of Batman's foes. Dennis O'Neil named Arkham Asylum as an homage to the works of H. P. Lovecraft. For years, artists have rendered it predominantly as an old and sometimes crumbling structure, but at times some artists have depicted it as a more modern facility (notably, the storyline The Last Arkham involved Jeremiah Arkham tearing down the old asylum and replacing it with a modern structure more akin to a supermax prison). Its exterior and interior appearances often change to match the moods and needs of the creative team. In some stories, the rooms have the stereotypical white padded walls of a mental hospital, in others the brick or stone cells of an old-fashioned asylum, and in still others the glass and steel private rooms of a modern hospital. The suggestion often made is that its history in the city reaches back to the early part of the 20th century, and that its manager is always a member of the Arkham family. Its current manager is Jeremiah Arkham, the nephew of founder Amadeus Arkham. Perhaps the most notable trait of Arkham is that many writers have placed a seeming revolving door on it, whereby Batman's villains either escape or are freed very shortly after being admitted, allowing writers to use them without complications. Characters often comment on this situation, either comically or seriously remarking on the need for better security and care at Arkham.
In other media
- The 1960s live-action Batman television series never specified Gotham's location. One episode refers to "Gotham Rock", implying a location analogous to Boston. The related theatrical movie, showed Batman to be flying over suburban Los Angeles, the Hollywood Hills, palm trees, a harbor, a beach and a view of the Los Angeles City Hall. No attempt was made to cover the fact that the movie was filmed in Los Angeles. During the television series, the mayor of Gotham City was Mayor Linseed, a not-so-veiled reference to then-New York City Mayor John Lindsay. The governor's name was Stonefeller, a nod to New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller. The George Washington Bridge was used as a backdrop to a bridge that lead to "New Guernsey." Other New York satirical references included Short Island Sound, the United World building (the UN), the West River and Chimes Square. A closer examination of the "Giant Lighted Lucite Map of Gotham City" reveals that the map itself is a reverse-image of the St. Louis metropolitan area, complete with Forest Park, Horseshoe Lake (on the Illinois side) and all major roadways as they appeared in 1966. Although the setting for the series was Gotham City (as with virtually all Batman serials), several New York City locations are noted throughout the series. Among them are the New York Public Library Central Research Building on West 42nd Street, Central Park, and Foley Square in Lower Manhattan. Portions of the 1966 film also were shot on location in NYC.
- Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman mentions Gotham in a conversation between Lois and Clark. Lois casually talks about Clark's alternate life as Superman in public, so Clark chastises her, saying, "Could you say that a little louder? I don't think they heard you in Gotham City!"
- Gotham City is featured in Batman: The Animated Series. In the episode "Joker's Favor" , a driver's license lists a Gotham area resident's hometown as "Gotham Estates, NY". This implies that Gotham City borders or is within the state of New York, and has suburbs (such as Gotham Estates) within commuting distance. In another episode, when Bruce Wayne leaves for England, it shows Gotham City located on New York's Long Island, clearly in the same location as Queens. Another episode however, implies that Gotham resides in a state of the same name; a prison workshop is shown stamping license plates that read "Gotham - The Dark Deco State" (as a reference to the artistic style of the series, this plate was intended as a gag). In addition, the episode "Harlequinade" states that Gotham City has a population of approximately 10 million people. The series also has drawings which New Yorkers can easily recognise as Times Square, Radio City Music Hall, the Statue of Liberty, and the Museum of Natural History. They refer to it as Gotham Square Garden but it is MSG. There is also a Statue Of Liberty, however, it has a shield and crown.
- Batman Beyond envisions a Gotham City fifty years into the future, referred to as "Neo-Gotham". It has futuristic architecture which mixes Gothic and Asian influences, reminiscent of the film Akira, with elevated streets looping around buildings, replacing the Gothic architecture based on early 20th century American city.
- In the TV series Smallville, Gotham City is mentioned by the character Linda Lake in the episode "Hydro", who jokes she can see Gotham from her view. It is also mentioned in "Reunion", where one of Oliver Queen's friends mentions having to get back to Gotham. It is also likely where the JSA's brownstone was located in the ninth season episode 'Absolute Justice'.
- Gotham City in The Batman shares many similarities to Gotham depicted in Batman Begins, resembling a darker in architecture. Elements of art deco, albeit toned down, are prevalent as well. The sky is almost always colored red or green when depicted at night. Landmarks in the series include Lady Gotham (remade in the Joker's image in a multipart story known as the Clay-Face trilogy), with an outstretched arm holding a sword and the other holding a shield. Wayne Manor is positioned in Gotham City itself, and has a taller, less stately appearance, resembling New York's Waldorf Astoria hotel in parts.
Tim Burton films
- In the opening lines of the Sam Hamm screenplay for the 1989 film version of Batman, Gotham is described as Hell erupted through the pavement and built a city (similar to a Pandæmonium, or the capital of Hell, from the terms of John Milton). The logic in screenplay is when elevators were utilized for taller structures, the buildings over a few stories were built around the existing structures of Gotham City. These skyscapers cast a shadow over the city coupled with the smoke from Gotham's industry kept the city in perpetual dusk. A map of Gotham City used in the film Batman (1989) was actually an inverted map of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. In the same movie, a map of the Axis Chemical plant was actually a map of the Capitol Hill neighborhood in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. Anton Furst did the production design for the first Batman film directed by Tim Burton. Anton Furst's set designs for the Batman movie were an attempt to imagine what might have happened to New York City had there been no planning commission and had it been run by pure extortion and crime. Hence, there were no height restrictions, the skyscrapers were cantilevered toward the street rather than away, there were lots of bridges over the streets. In return, the city appeared to be extremely dark and claustrophobic. Burton even stated himself that his take on Gotham was "As if Hell came sprouting out of the concrete and kept right on growing."The individual buildings in Furst's version of Gotham were based on a whole host of influences. The cathedral was based on Antoni Gaudí's Sagrada Família, the Flugelheim Museum exterior was based on the work of Shin Takamatsu, and some of the other influences were Otto Wagner, Norman Foster, and Albert Speer. In essence, Furst deliberately mixed clashing architectural styles to make Gotham City the ugliest and bleakest metropolis imaginable. For Wayne Manor, Knebworth House, a Gothic Tudor mansion 28 miles north of London was used for the exterior. The interior however, is Hatfield House, Hertfordshire. The flag of Gotham City closely resembles the state flag of Indiana. It can be seen briefly in Harvey Dent's office.
Joel Schumacher films
- During Mr. Freeze’s attempt to freeze Gotham in the film Batman & Robin (1997), the targeting screen for his giant laser locates it somewhere on the New England shoreline, possibly as far north as Maine. The soundtrack for Batman & Robin features a song named after the city and sung by R. Kelly, later included on international editions of his 1998 double album R.
Christopher Nolan films
- The first two Batman films in Christopher Nolan's franchise have Chicago representing Gotham City. Director Christopher Nolan worked with production designer Nathan Crowley to create the look of Gotham City. Nolan designed Gotham City to be a large, modern metropolitan area that would reflect the various periods of architecture that the city had gone through. Elements were drawn from Chicago, New York City, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Philadelphia, Seattle, Cincinnati, Boston, Newark, Bridgeport, St. Louis, Cleveland, Baltimore, and Tokyo; the latter for its elevated freeways and monorails. Gotham has a seaside port. Alfred comments that the caverns beneath Wayne Manor that are to be converted into the Batcave were once used by a Wayne ancestor to hide escaping slaves in the Underground Railroad during the American Civil War. The automobile license plates shown throughout the film and in its sequel are based on Illinois' license plate design, with what is presumed to be Gotham City's Seal replacing Lincoln's head, and the word "Gotham" were the name of the state would be, suggesting that the state Gotham City is located in is also called Gotham. Its area code is the as-yet-unassigned 735. The fictitious plates were designed to resemble Illinois plates in the event that Illinois license plates appeared.
- In Batman Begins the Chicago Board of Trade Building was the visual inspiration for the film's Wayne Tower design. The art-deco building was represented as the hub of Gotham's water and elevated railway systems and also housed Gotham's opera house. 35 East Wacker was depicted as Gotham's main courthouse. Several other Chicago skyscrapers were shown such as the Willis Tower, Hyatt Center, Two Prudential Plaza, the Chicago Water Tower and the twin Marina City towers. The former Rothschild estate, Mentmore Towers in Buckinghamshire, was used to portray Wayne Manor's exterior and interior. The Narrows was based on the slummish nature of the now-demolished Kowloon Walled City in Hong Kong. One notable change in this version of Arkham Asylum from the comics was the location. While the location has varied in the comics, it is generally located some distance away from urban areas, often in a rural or forested location. However, Batman Begins has it located in a densely populated slum.
- In Batman: Gotham Knight (which takes place between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight), Gotham City was featured. The Narrows section from the last film has been converted into an expansion of Arkham Asylum.
- In The Dark Knight, the modern Richard J. Daley Center is suggested as the new headquarters for Wayne Enterprises. As Wayne Manor was being reconstructed in the events of The Dark Knight, a digitally enhanced Hotel 71 was used as Bruce Wayne's penthouse. 330 North Wabash was used as Gotham City Hall and houses Mayor Garcia's office and Harvey Dent's office. The climax of the movie on the Prewitt Building uses the then-under-construction Trump Tower. Other Chicago landmarks seen in The Dark Knight include Chicago Board of Trade Building, Sears Tower/Willis Tower, Aon Center, Two Prudential Plaza, NBC Tower, the Marina City towers, Navy Pier, the Randolph Street Metra Station, and lower Wacker Drive. It is revealed that downtown Gotham, or much of the city, is on an island, similar to New York City's Manhattan Island, as suggested by the Gotham Island Ferry. However, while Gordon is discussing evacuation plans with the Mayor, land routes to the east are mentioned. The Narrows itself was left in chaos after the events of Batman Begins and is therefore not mentioned during The Dark Knight. In conversation with Harvey Dent, Bruce Wayne indicates that the Palisades of the Wayne Manor estate are within the city limits. In terms of population, Lucius Fox says that the city houses "30 million people", though this could mean the greater metropolitan area.
- Nolan's third film, The Dark Knight Rises primarily models Gotham City after Pittsburgh, Newark, Detroit, and New York City. The intent of this was to make Gotham feel more expansive by loosely portraying its surrounding districts as different real-world cities. One notable example includes the fictional Gotham Rogues American football team, which uses the colors of black and gold–the colors of most of Pittsburgh's professional sports teams, including the Pittsburgh Steelers, who make cameo appearances as the Rogues–as opposed to the navy and orange that the Chicago Bears use. Midtown Manhattan is also notably visible in trailers for the film, with aerial shots at dusk showing several New York City landmarks including Citigroup Center, Sony Building, Bloomberg Tower, Time Warner Center and Queensboro Bridge, as well as the Empire State Building, briefly visible. In another aerial sequence showing bridges collapsing, several Downtown Manhattan buildings are also visible, including 40 Wall Street, 70 Pine Street, 55 Water Street and 8 Spruce Street. The bridge closest to the camera closely resembles Williamsburg Bridge, while what looks like Manhattan Bridge and Brooklyn Bridge can be seen in the background.
- In Batman: Arkham City, the slums of Gotham City were converted into Arkham City. Inside the prison walls, this part of Gotham contains various landmarks throughout the story, like Penguin's Iceberg Lounge, the Ace Chemical Plant, the Sionis Steel Mill, the original Gotham City Police Department building, and the Monarch Theater with the Wayne murder scene in Crime Alley. Most of these locations have major events in the story.
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- ^ "''A Tourist's Guide to Gotham City''". Members.tripod.com. http://members.tripod.com/AdamWest/tour.htm. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Film locations for ''Batman''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/b/batman.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Gotham City (Burton films) - Batman Wiki". Batman.wikia.com. http://batman.wikia.com/wiki/Gotham_City_(Burton_films). Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Equally important to the success of the film is Burton's dark and surreal visual style. He creates a Gotham City that is scary, cartoonish and imposing all at the same time". Rambles.net. 2002-05-25. http://www.rambles.net/batman89.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Comic Book Resources Forums - View Single Post - Gotham City Architecture Influences". Forums.comicbookresources.com. http://forums.comicbookresources.com/showpost.php?p=4192757&postcount=3. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Film locations for ''Batman Returns''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/b/batmanreturns.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "''Batman Returns'' - Gotham City". Angelfire.com. http://www.angelfire.com/film/batman/movies/returns/design/city.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ Daly, Steve (1992-06-19). "Sets Appeal: Designing 'Batman Returns'". Ew.com. http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,310819,00.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ McCarthy, Todd (1992-06-14). "Lensed seemingly entirely indoors or on covered sets, pic is a magnificently atmospheric elaboration on German expressionism. Its look has been freshly imagined by production designer Bo Welch, based on the Oscar-winning concepts of the late Anton Furst in the first installment. Welch's Gotham City looms ominously over all individuals, and every set-from Penguin's aquarium-like lair and Shreck's lavish offices to Bruce Wayne's vaguely "Citizen Kane"-like mansion and simple back alleys-is brilliantly executed to maximum evocative effect". Variety.com. http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117901465.html?categoryid=31&cs=1. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "And the sinister visual grandeur of the late Anton Furst has given way to the more whimsical approach". Movies.real.com. http://movies.real.com/movie/1992/batman_returns/reviews.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "The sets by Bo Welch are amazing, a Teutonic, "Metropolis"-like Gotham - perfect to house the larger than life characters". Beyondhollywood.com. 2004-05-07. http://www.beyondhollywood.com/reviews/batman2.htm. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "The three-way story, involving Keaton's Batman, DeVito's Penguin and Pfeiffer's Catwoman, takes place in a wonderland of moody sets by Bo Welch". Washingtonpost.com. 1992-06-19. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/movies/videos/batmanreturnspg13howe_a07fbb.htm. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ Judy Sloane (August 1995). "Bo Welch Interview", Film Review, pp. 66. Retrieved on 2008-08-14.
- ^ "Gotham City (Schumacher films) - Batman Wiki". Batman.wikia.com. 2010-12-16. http://batman.wikia.com/wiki/Gotham_City_(Schumacher_films). Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Film locations for ''Batman Forever''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/b/batmanforever.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "''Batman Forever'' - Gotham". Angelfire.com. http://www.angelfire.com/film/batman/movies/forever/design/gotham.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ In collaboration with production designer Barbara Ling and her crew, Schumacher has kept the series' dark and monumental look (the legacy of Frank Miller's graphic novel "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns") and, as advertised, lightened the project's overall tone.
- ^ "Film locations for ''Batman & Robin''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/b/batmanandrobin.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "''Batman & Robin'' - Gotham City". Angelfire.com. http://www.angelfire.com/film/batman/movies/robin/design/gotham.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Barbara Ling's no-holds-barred production design makes Gotham look more surreal than ever". Shoestring.org. http://www.shoestring.org/mmi_revs/batman-robin.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "``Batman & Robin's'' look is luminous and marvelously outlandish throughout. Barbara Ling's production design is outstanding, a stunning evocation of modern Expressionism". Members.aol.com. http://members.aol.com/MPreston88/MPres1.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ Batman & Robin DVD extras
- ^ Departing from former "Batman" director Tim Burton's gothic approach to New York, Schumacher and production designer Barbara Ling compulsively layer the background with a futuristic city design that seems to aim for "Blade Runner" by way of "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles".
- ^ Barbara Ling, Bigger, Bolder, Brighter: The Production Design of Batman & Robin, 2005, Warner Home Video
- ^ "Gotham City's Gothic architecture and counterculture population has been taken to new - and silly - extremes, to the point where it's literally embarrassing to watch". Rambles.net. http://www.rambles.net/batman4.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ "Gotham City (Nolan Films) - Batman Wiki". Batman.wikia.com. http://batman.wikia.com/wiki/Gotham_City_(Nolan_Films). Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ The Dark Knight
- ^ "Film locations for ''Batman Begins''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/b/batmanbegins.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ Otto, Jeff (2006-06-05). "Interview: Christopher Nolan". IGN. http://movies.ign.com/articles/622/622719p1.html. Retrieved 2006-11-06.
- ^ "Film locations for ''The Dark Knight''". Movie-locations.com. http://www.movie-locations.com/movies/d/DarkKnight.html. Retrieved 2010-12-25.
- ^ Brown, Scott (August 5, 2011). "Steelers giddy about appearance in 'The Dark Knight Rises'". Trib Live. http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/s_750230.html. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
- ^ Bouchette, Ed (August 5, 2011). "Steelers pick up roles as Batman movie extras". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11217/1165434-100.stm. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
- Brady, Matthew and Williams, Dwight. Daily Planet Guide to Gotham City. Honesdale, Pennsylvania: West End Games under license from DC Comics, 2000.
- Brown, Eliot. "Gotham City Skyline". Secret Files & Origins Guide to the DC Universe 2000. New York: DC Comics, 2000.
- Grant, Alan. "The Last Arkham". Batman: Shadow of the Bat #1. New York: DC Comics, 1992.
- Loeb, Jeph. Batman: The Long Halloween. New York: DC Comics, 1997.
- Miller, Frank. Batman: Year One. New York: DC Comics, 1988.
- Morrison, Grant. Arkham Asylum. New York: DC Comics, 1990.
- O'Neil, Dennis. "Destroyer". Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #27. New York: DC Comics, 1992.