For the past 75 years, every Batman story across all media has carried one --- and only one --- credit with regards to the character's origin: "Batman created by Bob Kane." Now, that's going to change.

Today, DC Entertainment announced that when Gotham returns to television next week, and when Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice hits theaters next year, they'll both feature a credit for Bill Finger, who co-created Batman with Kane in 1939 and was responsible for some of the most enduring elements of the character.

The announcement was made in a statement from DC, released to the Hollywood Reporter:


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.”


For context, those contributions include, among other things, Batman's costume and color scheme, the idea that he doesn't have super-powers, the origin story that includes the death of his parents, the co-creation of Robin, Catwoman and the Joker, and, perhaps most relevant to the TV show, Gotham City as the setting for Batman's adventures.

This news follows a resurgence of interest in Finger, who died in 1974 at the age of 59. Fan efforts to seek greater recognition for Finger began in the 1960s, and continue today with projects that include Marc Tyler Nobleman and Ty Templeton's Bill The Boy Wonder, a book for young readers that details Finger's work and includes a list of sources for further reading. It's well worth checking out if you're curious as to the story. Finger received his first-ever cover credit only last year as the writer of "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate," the story that introduced Batman in Detective Comics #27.

What form his credit will take in Gotham and Batman V Superman remains to be seen. It seems doubtful that the existing "Batman created by Bob Kane" credit will be supplanted by one that adds Finger, but after years of obscurity, any acknowledgement of Finger's work --- without which there would be no Batman today --- is a step in the right direction.


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