This is really good news, even if it's decades overdue.
The man many comic book fans consider the co-creator of the Batman mythos is going to get the credit he deserves. DC Entertainment announced today that Bill Finger, who worked with Bob Kane on early Batman comic strips as well as co-creating Green Lantern and other characters for the company, will be receiving official credit for his work in film and television projects based on his creations.
Finger, who died in 1974, made a number of critical contributions to the Batman mythos, including coming up with the names of the hero's alter ego Bruce Wayne, as well as the city in which the hero fights crime. He was also co-creator for a number of iconic Batman characters including Robin, Catwoman and the Joker.
Although Kane received sole official credit for the character as part of the original deal signed in 1939, the artist talked in later life about Finger being an important influence on the development of the series. In his 1989 autobiography Batman and Me, Kane described Finger as "a contributing force" on the series, noting "I must admit that Bill never received the fame and recognition he deserved."
In recent years, that has changed — thanks, in part, to Marc Tyler Nobleman's biography of the creator, Bill the Boy Wonder, which prompted coverage calling Finger "Batman's Biggest Secret". Last year, a re-issue of Batman's first appearance in celebration of the character's 75th anniversary saw DC give Finger cover credit for his work on the issue, and today's news extends that further.
The DC Entertainment statement, released exclusively to THR, reads:
DC Entertainment and the family of Bill Finger are pleased to announce that they have reached an agreement that recognizes Mr. Finger’s significant contributions to the Batman family of characters. "Bill Finger was instrumental in developing many of the key creative elements that enrich the Batman universe, and we look forward to building on our acknowledgement of his significant role in DC Comics’ history," stated Diane Nelson, President of DC Entertainment. "As part of our acknowledgement of those contributions," Nelson continued, "we are pleased to confirm today that Bill Finger will be receiving credit in the Warner Bros. television series Gotham beginning later this season, and in the forthcoming motion picture Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice."