Tom Hardy takes over the character of Bane, in the latest Batman flick, The Dark Knight Rises. The British actor says his sinister character is a worthy opponent to Christian Bale's Batman role because he measures up in intellect and goes far beyond in physical ability.
Bane is "really grumpy, like a big gorilla," Hardy says. "He's intellectually Batman's equal. He's physically probably more dangerous than Batman."
The actor also admitted to MTV that his new approach to the Dark Knight villain may upset viewers.
"[Director,] Nolan's take on [Bane] was intrinsically lateral because he has a way of wanting and desiring to breathe a realism and a lateral thought into that which has already come through the comic book world," Hardy said in an interview with MTV.
"I think largely that's going to upset some people, and there's some people that are going to really hang on to that. And I'm one of those people that really enjoys that actually, to be quite honest - carving a new way through something that's already a set piece on the planet."
Hardy continues to say that he didn't think he was an appropriate match for the role in The Dark Knight Rises,"in part because he wasn't even familiar with the character.
"When I first heard of Bane, I think, like a lot of people who aren't Batman-centric in a way, I didn't know who he was," the actor revealed. Even after learning about the Batman villain, Hardy insisted he still would not fit the character.
"I looked at him and I saw his luchador mask and his way-tight wrestling pants and his huge muscles. I thought, '[Nolan] must have got the wrong man, because I can't play ... I don't play that.'"
Hardy was also physically unfit for the role. To play the bulky villain, the actor trained for four months to gain 30 pounds of muscle.
"Bane is the first adversary who you recognize could physically destroy Batman," said actor, Christian Bale, who plays Bruce/ Batman in The Dark Knight Rises.
However, Hardy's journey to Bane did not yield his performance. One of the film's producers, Emma Thomas, admits that Hardy is a "transformative actor."
"When we were doing costume fittings for Bane, for example, he'd come in - and this is before he had put on much of the bulk - he would walk in and he'd look quite slim and slender... then he would hold his body in a different way and sort of stick his gut out, do something with his shoulders and suddenly you'd see exactly what it is he's going to do," she said.
Catch The Dark Knight Rises in theatres today.
Check out the video below.