Batman & Robin is a 1997 American superhero film directed by Joel Schumacher. Based on the DC Comics character Batman, the film is the fourth and final installment of Warner Bros.' initial Batman film series. It is a sequel to Batman Forever (1995), with George Clooney replacing Val Kilmer as Batman. The returning cast features Chris O'Donnell as Robin, Pat Hingle as Commissioner Gordon, and Michael Gough as Alfred Pennyworth.
Batman & Robin tells the story of Batman and Robin as they attempt to stop villains Mr. Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger), Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman), and Bane (Robert Swenson) from covering Gotham City with ice and vegetation while at the same time struggling to keep their partnership together. The film also features the introduction of Alfred's niece Barbara Wilson, who later aids Batman and Robin in the form of Batgirl (Alicia Silverstone). Development for Batman & Robin started immediately after Batman Forever, and Warner Bros. commissioned the film for a June 1997 release. Principal photography began in September 1996 and finished in January 1997, two weeks ahead of the shooting schedule.
Batman & Robin was released on June 20, 1997, and received negative reviews. Observers criticized the film for its toyetic and camp approach, as well as possible homosexual innuendo added by Schumacher. Years after its release, it has been considered by critics to be one of the worst films ever made. Batman & Robin received 11 nominations at the 1997 ceremony of the Razzie Awards, including one for Worst Picture. After this, Warner Bros. canceled the unproduced Batman Triumphant, and the film series was eventually rebooted with Batman Begins (2005) by director Christopher Nolan. The song made for the film, "The End Is the Beginning Is the End" by The Smashing Pumpkins, won a Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance at the 40th Grammy Awards. However, it was also nominated for the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Original Song.