Even though 'Batman Forever' has been critically maligned and will be associated with nipples on rubber suits, there's no denying that it was a huge success in 1995.
For one, that soundtrack? Incredible. Putting Seal, U2, AND The Offspring all on the same album? Insane. Also, who needs all that neon in a city? Anyway, it's well documented that just about every actor going auditioned for the role of Robin in the movie, with Matt Damon being top of the list. What you might not know, however, is that Damon auditioned for the role not once, but twice.
In a recent episode of 'Happy, Sad, Confused', Damon revealed that he came close to being Dick Grayson, but lost out to Chris O'Donnell the second time and a studio rewrite the first time. Damon, at the time of Tim Burton's 'Batman', was "16 or 17".
"I remember that we didn't have sides — it wasn't like you're reading a scene with Batman. It was so secretive that you're reading this other scene from some other movie," Damon explained. As to 'Batman Forever', Damon was wheeled in for leverage in contract negotiations. "Chris O'Donnell already had the part, but they were haggling over money," Damon recalled. "The studio was flexing, basically, by flying in two other people to screen test. They wanted Chris, but they just wanted him for a price."
Of course, O'Donnell went to play the role again in 'Batman & Robin', which effectively ended the Caped Crusader until Christopher Nolan's 'Batman Begins' hit the reset button. As for Damon, he did OK out of not playing Robin, but it's interesting that his 'Good Will Hunting' co-star Ben Affleck ended up in the role of Batman.