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part of a small rebellion | by maryann johanson

Christian Bale arrested for assault

I’m not one for celebrity gossip, but this makes me wonder: Is The Dark Knight cursed somehow? Or does the Batman ethos just attract damaged people? The AP is reporting:

LONDON – Batman star Christian Bale was arrested Tuesday over allegations of assaulting his mother and sister, police and British media said.

Assaulting his mother? That’s a special kind of fucked up.

This is disturbing, too:

The Sun newspaper said police didn’t question the actor Monday because they didn’t want to interfere with the premiere of the movie.

Seriously? A movie premiere is more important than investigating a violent crime?

Maybe we are living in Gotham after all…

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  • PaulW

    This is just all speculative at the moment: this could be just a shouting match gone wrong or it could be a knockdown fight, we’ll have to see.

    I won’t worry about DK being cursed unless Morgan Freeman gets caught knocking over the Federal Reserve in New York or something…

  • Not to defend Bale if the allegations are true, but I’m relieved that he wasn’t charged with battery–which means he didn’t actually hit anybody.

  • Tonight’s London Evening Standard bills say: “Police arrest Batman”.

    News reporters live for stuff like that.

  • ashok

    I really don’t understand why you would perpetuate these various ‘news’ items before all the information is revealed, MaryAnn. You know well enough what sort of hyenas masquerade as reporters when it comes to showbiz news. The latest reports say that Bale was not in fact arrested but simply asked to come into the station to respond to ‘an allegation of assault’ and that after he did so and cooperated fully, they let him go without any charges.

    Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? I know I’m probably going to get a smackdown from the MaryAnn fans for this but it’s a little irresponsible calling Bale ‘damaged’ on the basis of these incomplete early reports.

    I’m not saying he didnt do anything but that at this point there is absolutely no way to know for sure.

    News gets spun into completely weirdass directions. Look at just the other day with the Moffatt/Spielberg thing.

  • Sara

    It is disturbing, I’d say. Was also reported in the Guardian, UK, which is not a tabloid. They report that on the red carpet the other night (he’d been arrested but was ‘allowed’ to go to the premiere first) that Bale said “Try putting on a bat suit and not laughing at yourself, it’s very tricky. The only way you can manage that is by creating this demonic, angry creature. You cease to become a man, you become a creature.”

  • Hdj

    The movies cursed, I lost a contact lens while watching it today.

  • Sara

    That’s a sure sign if I’ve ever heard one! What a rip though.

  • MaryAnn

    This is just all speculative at the moment: this could be just a shouting match gone wrong or it could be a knockdown fight, we’ll have to see.

    I’m not sure that “speculative” is quite the right word. Shouting matches do not prompt arrests, or even invitations to visit police stations. And the newspapers generally do not go to such extremes as to complete invent such celebrity “news.” Exaggerate? Sure. But Britain has much stricter laws about slander and libel than the U.S. does. I don’t think they’d risk a lawsuit — which they’d probably lose — if there wasn’t a factual basis for their stories.

    I do think it’s all worth discussing, even if we’re discussing whether or not it’s entirely true and why it would have appeared in the news anyway. Why are we so willing to believe this kind of thing, at least to the point where newspapers assume (and rightly so) that they will draw in readers with a headline like “Police arrest Batman”?

  • Sara

    Interesting to me any time the Christian Bale situation has come up today around people I’ve been in contact with (not in connection with this site at all) the response has been an automatic knee-jerk reaction that Bale would not have done anything like this. And then negative things said about his mom and sister.
    Totally in defense of Bale. I have no idea what happened, but the people speaking to me today don’t either. I just found it interesting that there wasn’t the tendency to believe that this could be true, but quite the opposite (and an unwillingness to even consider it might be) and complete blame going on mom and sister.

  • Tom S.

    From various sources, it seems that Bale’s relationship with his mother is rather fraught, and that he was much closer to his late father, who was the main supporter of his acting career. It’s not had to image that there is a dispute about money or some such that led to a shouting match and possibly some pushing and shoving.

    TMZ (yeah, I know…) reports that it was basically a push or brush past his mom that lead to the assault charge. British assault laws do include a couple of categories for pure verbal assault. Considering that he wasn’t charged with battery as well, it’s likely that even if there was some physical contact, no actual punch was thrown.

  • Surprised no one has asked this question yet:

    Did someone bail Bale out of jail?

  • Nathan

    yelling and gesturing would fall under “assault” if the “victim” felt threatened.

    as opposed to aggravated assault or battery…

    i’m guessing that Bale has a temper, his mother and sister are pains in the ass, and “Batman Goes To Jail” is just too good a headline to pass up.

  • It’s years since I was a newspaper reporter, but from what I remember there’s no such charge as assault and battery in English law. There’s common assault, assault causing actual bodily harm and assault causing grievous bodily harm.

    Taking the bus home last night, I passed the Dorchester hotel, where the assault allegedly happened. I’ve never seen so many TV cameras and satellite dishes in my life.

  • Surprised no one has asked this question yet:

    Did someone bail Bale out of jail?

    He wasn’t charged with anything, which means he walked out of the station of his own free will. I get the joke though… kinda.

    I think this story has been blown way out of proportion because of the movie’s success.

  • Shadowen

    I heard on the radio today that because of the way Britain’s laws worked, threatening-enough shouting can be classified as assault. Reportedly, Bale’s mother and sister were having a verbal go at his wife, so he lost his temper. Essentially what Alex’s linked story says.

    What gets me is that Bale tries hard to be a very private person for the sake of his family and his loss of temper could not have been perpetrated at a worse time, publicity speaking.

  • Here’s a summary of common assault in English law:


    Note: “This is the least serious assault and a common assault can be an alternative verdict to more serious offences of assault. In real terms, the degree of fear or the level of injury required for a conviction can be slight. Thus, even the most trivial of injuries can be a battery, whether as a scratch or bruise, so long as the contact can be proved.”

    The police are obliged to investigate any complaint that’s been made, but in relatively trivial cases they may well decide it’s not in the public interest to proceed with a prosecution. An alternative course of action is for defandant to appear in court and be bound over to keep the peace, meaning they won’t have a criminal record but could be hauled up again if they get into any more trouble.

  • John

    OK, the story as I understand it: Bale is estranged from his mother and sister. Mom and sis showed up uninvited to the hotel Bale was staying at, and demanded to be let into his room. They made a scene, but staff didn’t unlock the door for them, so they waited in the hall outside the room until he returned. Argument ensues.

    Flash forward roughly 24 hours. Mom and sis finally decide to file a charge, in a completely different city (Hampshire) than the incident took place in (London). Bale voluntarily cooperates with police, comes in for questioning and so on, isn’t charged with anything, and is free to go.

    Based on that, it looks to me like mom and sis want a piece of the Bat-action and created a scene in order to cash in.

    Possibly unrelated: Mom is a former circus clown.

  • Sara

    Wonderful family huh? Doesn’t it make you wish you were born into that one? I prefer my own. Makes me feel lucky indeed.

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