The Dark Knight Rises is a 2012 superhero film directed by Christopher Nolan, who co-wrote the screenplay with his brother Jonathan Nolan and the story with David S. Goyer. Featuring the DC Comics character Batman, the film is the third and final installment in Nolan's Batman film trilogy, and is a sequel to Batman Begins (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008). Christian Bale reprises the lead role of Bruce Wayne/Batman, with a returning cast of Michael Caine as Alfred Pennyworth, Gary Oldman as James Gordon, Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, and Cillian Murphy as Dr. Jonathan Crane. The film introduces the character of Selina Kyle, played by Anne Hathaway, a cat burglar whose appearance in Gotham City sets in motion a chain of events that will lead Batman to come out of retirement, and Bane, played by Tom Hardy, the story's antagonist.
Christopher Nolan was initially hesitant about returning to the series for a third time, but agreed to come back after developing a story with his brother and Goyer that he felt would conclude the series on a satisfactory note. Nolan drew inspiration from Bane's comic book debut in the 1993 Knightfall storyline, the 1986 series The Dark Knight Returns, and the 1999 storyline No Man's Land. Filming took place in various locations, including Jodhpur, London, Nottingham, Glasgow, Los Angeles, New York City, Newark, and Pittsburgh. Nolan utilized IMAX cameras for much of the filming to optimize the quality of the picture. As with The Dark Knight, viral marketing campaigns began early during production to help promote the upcoming film. When filming concluded, Warner Bros. refocused its campaign; developing promotional websites, releasing the first six minutes of the film and theatrical trailers, and sending random pieces of information regarding the film's plot to various companies.
The Dark Knight Rises premiered in New York City on July 16, 2012. The film was released in Australia and New Zealand on July 19, 2012, and in North America and the United Kingdom on July 20, 2012 to mostly positive reviews. During a midnight showing of the film in Aurora, Colorado, a gunman opened fire inside the theater, killing 12 people and injuring 58 others, leading to international news coverage.