Cape Town – Director Christopher Nolan has confirmed to Empire Magazine that there will be no mention of The Joker in the new Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises.
Nolan said this was as a sign of respect to the late Heath Ledger who portrayed the villain in The Dark Knight, wrote Indiewire in their report of the Empire cover story.
The latest and final film in Nolan's Batman trilogy is to be released four years after the actor's tragic death.
It features new villains, Bane (played by Tom Hardy) and Catwoman (Anne Hathaway), who take on the hero Batman.
"We're not addressing The Joker at all," said Nolan in his interview with the UK-based magazine.
"That is something I felt very strongly about in terms of my relationship with Heath and the experience I went through with him on The Dark Knight. I didn't want to in any way try and account for a real-life tragedy. That seemed inappropriate to me," he added.
'Great to remember Heath'
At the 2012 MTV Movie Awards held on Sunday, Christian Bale became visibly emotional after a short clip of The Dark Knight, featuring Ledger's The Joker, was played.
"Man, great to remember Heath in that moment," Bale said in front of the live audience.
Ledger passed away in 2008 after accidentally taking an overdose of prescription pills.