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Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman

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The darkest Batman is unmasked. During the London press junket for The Dark Knight in the summer of 2008, Christian Bale was infamously accused of assaulting his mother and sister at the five-star Dorchester Hotel. Six months later, a recording of Bale’s rant on the set of Terminator Salvation was leaked, and the star’s anger began to define him. But beyond his notorious tem The darkest Batman is unmasked. During the London press junket for The Dark Knight in the summer of 2008, Christian Bale was infamously accused of assaulting his mother and sister at the five-star Dorchester Hotel. Six months later, a recording of Bale’s rant on the set of Terminator Salvation was leaked, and the star’s anger began to define him. But beyond his notorious temper, Bale, an Academy Award-winning actor for his role in The Fighter, is known for his ability to physically transform himself for roles in American Psycho, The Machinist, and as one of Hollywood’s most revered and bankable characters—Batman. In Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman, Best Biography winner in the 2013 Indie Excellence Awards and finalist in the 2013 Indie Book Awards, Bale’s former publicist and assistant Harrison Cheung—his real-life Alfred—shares an inside look into the little-known personal life of the intensely private and reclusive actor. In the first biography of the Batman star, Cheung, who lived and worked with Christian and his father for 10 years, shares firsthand accounts of the Bales’ familial dysfunction, Christian’s morbid fascinations and dark humor, and his extreme dedication to his craft. Aware that Bale hated his traditional publicity duties, Cheung launched an extensive Internet marketing campaign for the actor, built the first official actor website for him, and cultivated the Baleheads, an online fan community that was used to garner editorial coverage and ultimately help Bale secure the role of the Caped Crusader. Written with veteran Hollywood and entertainment reporter Nicola Pittam, Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman uncovers Bale’s transformation from shy, English child actor to Internet sensation to Hollywood bad boy. *FOR DISTRIBUTION IN THE U.S. AND CANADA ONLY*


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The darkest Batman is unmasked. During the London press junket for The Dark Knight in the summer of 2008, Christian Bale was infamously accused of assaulting his mother and sister at the five-star Dorchester Hotel. Six months later, a recording of Bale’s rant on the set of Terminator Salvation was leaked, and the star’s anger began to define him. But beyond his notorious tem The darkest Batman is unmasked. During the London press junket for The Dark Knight in the summer of 2008, Christian Bale was infamously accused of assaulting his mother and sister at the five-star Dorchester Hotel. Six months later, a recording of Bale’s rant on the set of Terminator Salvation was leaked, and the star’s anger began to define him. But beyond his notorious temper, Bale, an Academy Award-winning actor for his role in The Fighter, is known for his ability to physically transform himself for roles in American Psycho, The Machinist, and as one of Hollywood’s most revered and bankable characters—Batman. In Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman, Best Biography winner in the 2013 Indie Excellence Awards and finalist in the 2013 Indie Book Awards, Bale’s former publicist and assistant Harrison Cheung—his real-life Alfred—shares an inside look into the little-known personal life of the intensely private and reclusive actor. In the first biography of the Batman star, Cheung, who lived and worked with Christian and his father for 10 years, shares firsthand accounts of the Bales’ familial dysfunction, Christian’s morbid fascinations and dark humor, and his extreme dedication to his craft. Aware that Bale hated his traditional publicity duties, Cheung launched an extensive Internet marketing campaign for the actor, built the first official actor website for him, and cultivated the Baleheads, an online fan community that was used to garner editorial coverage and ultimately help Bale secure the role of the Caped Crusader. Written with veteran Hollywood and entertainment reporter Nicola Pittam, Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman uncovers Bale’s transformation from shy, English child actor to Internet sensation to Hollywood bad boy. *FOR DISTRIBUTION IN THE U.S. AND CANADA ONLY*

30 review for Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman

  1. 5 out of 5

    P_roy

    I read this book and as long-time C.Bale fan, it certainly was no picnic. I am, of course, biased in Bale's favour but I really can't believe all that Cheung wrote. A lot of the facts don't add up. For example, he insinuated that he was responsible for Bale getting the Batman role but that simply can't be true. While he did inundate the internet with posts about how Bale is the perfect guy to play The Dark Knight, he didn't really help. Almost all male members of young Hollywood auditioned for t I read this book and as long-time C.Bale fan, it certainly was no picnic. I am, of course, biased in Bale's favour but I really can't believe all that Cheung wrote. A lot of the facts don't add up. For example, he insinuated that he was responsible for Bale getting the Batman role but that simply can't be true. While he did inundate the internet with posts about how Bale is the perfect guy to play The Dark Knight, he didn't really help. Almost all male members of young Hollywood auditioned for the much coveted role of Batman and Bale was only one of them. He had to compete with lots of talented actors like Henry Cavill, Eion Bailey, Henry Cavill, Billy Cudrup, Jake Gyllenhaal, Joshua Jackson and Cillian Murphy for weeks after Cheung was fired. It was Christopher Nolan who finally picked him because he liked the fire in Bale's eyes.(Nolan's words, not mine). So it had nothing to do with Cheung. That is all I needed to read to realize that Cheung is nothing more than a fanboy who got his dearest wish of working with his idol. He then turned around and betrayed him because Bale made the horrifying mistake of asking him to sign a NDA making him realize that he was not after all, a member of Bale's family but his employee. This is a book filled with outright lies and padded half-truths. And I hate myself for having read it.I did not find the exploitation of his teenage and young adult years in good taste. And what did Cheung gain by revealing his daughter's name? It was disgusting.It was quite clear that Cheung has an unhealthy obsession with Bale and has more psychological issues that Bale could ever have. I found that after divulging every little embarrassing detail (alleged) of his life, he rarely mentioned Bale's wife. It's as if Cheung likes to pretend that she doesn't exist. It is frankly, very odd. Do I think that Bale is some flawless god? Of course not. He seems to have a few demons of his own. But after having spent most of his life being manipulated by everyone in his life for his talent and the money he could make from it, I just can't judge him for it. I like him for being an amazingly talented actor and I have never been disappointed by his acting. It doesn't hurt that he looks like a freaking Greek god. He seems to be that rare A-lister who is only interested in his craft and doesn't care what others think of him and won't self-promote. That's all I need to enjoy his work. I'll never meet him and frankly, don't want to. And to the other Bale-fans, who are reading by disjointed and not-so-well-written review, avoid this book like a plague. P.S. After the way Bale quietly went and visited the victims of Aurora without any fanfare should tell anyone that he does care about his fans. He might not be smiles and sunshine all the time but he cares when it counts.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Danny Tyran

    Really, I do not know what to think about this book. What is true? What is false? How could we know since Harrison Cheung holds grudges to Christian Bale for never being paid for his work as a publicist and webmaster. It is true that Cheung did a good job, but he considered himself as a member of the Bale family, giving his time to someone he saw as a brother (C. Bale). Then he began to ask for his payment. So Mr. Bale asked him to sign an NDE (confidentiality agreement) that Cheung refused to s Really, I do not know what to think about this book. What is true? What is false? How could we know since Harrison Cheung holds grudges to Christian Bale for never being paid for his work as a publicist and webmaster. It is true that Cheung did a good job, but he considered himself as a member of the Bale family, giving his time to someone he saw as a brother (C. Bale). Then he began to ask for his payment. So Mr. Bale asked him to sign an NDE (confidentiality agreement) that Cheung refused to sign. Do I imagine things or Cheung was preparing this biography since his first meeting with Christian B.? This NDE would prevent him from publishing it. So when you have a guy who holds it against another whose biography he is writing, can we believe what he told? I do not doubt that there are truths. No one have any doubt that Christian B. may have an explosive temper. But should we generalize on the basis of two well-known incidents? And those people who told that C. Bale had a great sense of humor and was fun, where were they mentioned? Nowhere. By cons, Cheung mentionned all Bale's foibles and ridiculed all his family. Cheung even told that once, him and C. Bale were listening to a movie together and C. Bale farted and the fart was so loud that Cheung jumped. Are you happy to learn that? There is things in this book that no one wants to know. We can see things in many different perspectives. Someone who does not want to participate in the promotion of a movie can be considered as a capricious man, who only wants to do what he pleases; but he can also be seen as someone who does not want to become a publicists' and journalists' whore. Bale doesn't want to lie and put fake smiles on his face to better sell his movies. Cheung preferred to show him as an unruly child who refuses to do his homework, because homework sucks, rather than showing him as an adult who believes that his job is to be an actor (and a really good one), not to become a salesman. So I emerged from this book thinking that someone knowing nothing of Christian Bale who would read this book would find C. Bale detestable. And someone who knows more would find Cheung despicable. As always, the middle path is the way to wisdom (and to truth). Bale is a tormented soul, an actor who does not want to become a star, but still want to be recognized as a great actor. There is nothing very usual in him. But that is what makes him interesting. I am sure he will surprise us in many ways in the future. I still find him very tanlented. And, oh, soooo handsome! lolllll The New World American Psycho http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6B1XL... Woooooo!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Cristiani

    I don’t know why I read this book. Christian Bale is not my favorite actor; he’s not even my favorite Christian (hel-lo, Mr. Kane). But, I am a huge Batman fan, and he did a very, very good Batman. And he was memorable in American Psycho, based on a book I hated to love. I’m not particularly interested in celebrity stories; but I am interested in interesting stories, and luckily for Cheung, Bale has one. His father, David, was at once protective father and self-described con man. To me, he is mos I don’t know why I read this book. Christian Bale is not my favorite actor; he’s not even my favorite Christian (hel-lo, Mr. Kane). But, I am a huge Batman fan, and he did a very, very good Batman. And he was memorable in American Psycho, based on a book I hated to love. I’m not particularly interested in celebrity stories; but I am interested in interesting stories, and luckily for Cheung, Bale has one. His father, David, was at once protective father and self-described con man. To me, he is most distasteful. He claims to have quoted from Roots when Christian, his only son, was born; yet Roots was published two years after Christian was born. He took Christian from England to California against his mother’s wishes, and lived off Christian's income as an actor because he couldn’t work on his visa. When Christian’s mother would call, he would whisper that she was calling for money so Christian wouldn’t talk to her. He was an open racist, and didn't pay his bills. The list goes on and makes me very angry to read. David Bale was void of integrity. That he married Gloria Steinem is one of life’s strangest ironies. Cheung politely portrays him as a colorful and charming character, and I’m sure he was. But still, it was sad to read (and yet perhaps Christian's most interesting back-story). I saw an interview with Bale recently; he does few, and is quite reclusive. The journalist was starstruck and nervous; she asked obvious, yes-or-no questions and he was indulgent and kind with her. The last question was whether he liked the secrecy of the Dark Knight movies because he didn’t have to see the press. He flashed his overbite smile and simply said, “yes.” I felt really sorry for him at that moment. We always imagine Hollywood stars as soaking up the fame like sponges, burning it up like fuel. For an actor to have come that far while hating the attention, well, it says a lot about his dedication to acting. He told Cheung he wanted to be an actor, not a movie star. Apparently he would attend press events unkempt and stinky, as his rebellion against what he was forced to do to be able to act. He had very little control in his life, and unlike his father seemed to have some integrity. Cheung manages to weave a tale that is actually worth reading, about an interesting person and his rise to fame. I enjoyed it, in spite of myself. Yet when I finished it, it left a very bad taste in my mouth. It seems that Cheung wrote the book because he never got paid a cent by Bale, even after being his publicist and assistant for years, and basically launching his status as internet phenom. He deserved more. But Cheung comes off as a shit for writing an intimate portrait of a very private person. Maybe he never got paid, but working with Bale jumpstarted his career as a Hollywood publicist; he never requested a contract because he was a fan. In other words, he made his own bed. They broke professionally around the time everyone wants to know intimate details: before the incident with his family and the police, before Batman came out, before the rant on the set of Terminator: Salvation. Cheung gently reminds the reader what a big role he played in Christian's life. I believe it, and it's necessary to develop his credibility. But I find it hard to believe that Cheung sent Christian the exact Batman comics all three movies were based on before he got the role: the trilogy companion book says the plot was so secretive it even had a code name, and they had no idea a trilogy would be made at the time. So I started to question Cheung’s truthfulness for the whole book. But no one looks rosy here. Bale comes off as a shit for making all this money finally, and never paying Cheung a dime. Father David Bale is a shit for any number of reasons – take your pick. Gloria Steinem is a shit for admitting, after David Bale passed away, that she married him so he could stay in the country. No one looks all that admirable by book’s end, and I feel like I need to go take a shower after all this sleaze. The only person who most absolutely does NOT come across as a shit is Ewan MacGregor. Maybe I should have read a biography of him instead.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Julie Moyers Adkins

    There is a spoiler alert near the end of this review. I went into this book expecting it to be crap. I even refused to buy it, borrowing it from my local library ebook section instead, so as to not reward this guy for writing it. It did not disappoint in the crap expectation category. Having said that, though, I'm actually glad I read it. I LOVE Christian Bale, so yes, I'm another biased fan. I had read other reviews (mostly negative) and I'm in total agreement with the common theme in critiques There is a spoiler alert near the end of this review. I went into this book expecting it to be crap. I even refused to buy it, borrowing it from my local library ebook section instead, so as to not reward this guy for writing it. It did not disappoint in the crap expectation category. Having said that, though, I'm actually glad I read it. I LOVE Christian Bale, so yes, I'm another biased fan. I had read other reviews (mostly negative) and I'm in total agreement with the common theme in critiques. It IS very repetitive. Many times he would repeat basically the same line only a couple of paragraphs apart. He bashes Christian's father for living his life through his son but the author himself seems one of the biggest culprits of that. He has the absolute low class of revealing Christian's daughter's real name, even though they tried to keep that from the public. He just seemed to want to paint Christian in a very narcissistic, volatile light. **SPOILER ALERT** Here's, strangely, why I'm glad I read this book. There was a part of me that always feared Christian used steroids to alter that body of his for the parts that he has played. How could he possibly not have used them to go from The Machinist to Batman Begins right? This guy swears Christian didn't. Guess I felt that if he had this clown would definitely have exposed that to make him look even worse.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Carla M

    Honestly... I don't know!! I mean when I first picked up the book it was basically cause Christian Bale was on the cover and of course the title was attractive "The inside story of the darkest Batman" so yeah I wanted to know the inside story of the most real Batman ever. I was so excited that I didn't even research the author, I didn't even know who was that Harrison Cheung. So I start reading and everything is fine until I start realizing who this "Cheung" is, former employee of Christian Bale Honestly... I don't know!! I mean when I first picked up the book it was basically cause Christian Bale was on the cover and of course the title was attractive "The inside story of the darkest Batman" so yeah I wanted to know the inside story of the most real Batman ever. I was so excited that I didn't even research the author, I didn't even know who was that Harrison Cheung. So I start reading and everything is fine until I start realizing who this "Cheung" is, former employee of Christian Bale who "never got paid" now wants to make money out of the best Batman ever 'cause lets face it no one cares who is Harrison Cheung, so I read the book but I can't stop but feeling how he is angry at Bale and then I read the whole cover "By the man who helped make him a phenomenon" and there it was I finished the book just 'cause I spent my money on it but I felt pity for the guy who writes a book out of despair, I feel it was his way of "revenge" for not getting paid all those years, I don't know what he was trying to do with all of that, but honestly who cares??! Christian Bale is the best Batman and that's why he'll be remembered for years, but this book is just a 10 minute fame, sure you'll read things about Bale but I definitely believe is not worth spending your money.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Erin O'Riordan

    Harrison Cheung, a Canadian who loves movies, was Christian Bale's unpaid personal assistant for many years. He does not have a very high opinion of Mr. Bale, whom he characterizes as incredibly self-centered. Disdainful of publicity to an extreme, Bale didn't even attend Heath Ledger's funeral because he didn't want to face the public, even though Bale and Ledger had become friends. (Some people get along with Christian Bale. Heath Ledger was one, and Russell Crowe is another.) This book is ful Harrison Cheung, a Canadian who loves movies, was Christian Bale's unpaid personal assistant for many years. He does not have a very high opinion of Mr. Bale, whom he characterizes as incredibly self-centered. Disdainful of publicity to an extreme, Bale didn't even attend Heath Ledger's funeral because he didn't want to face the public, even though Bale and Ledger had become friends. (Some people get along with Christian Bale. Heath Ledger was one, and Russell Crowe is another.) This book is full of short, interesting tidbits, but it also contains some strange errors and omissions. When mentioning Christian's interest in playing Mercutio in the Baz Luhrmann 'Romeo + Juliet' film of the '90s, Cheung and co-author Nicola Pittam mention that Bale lost the role to "an African-American." What an odd, vague way to describe Harold Perrineau, the actor who not only steals the movie with his impassioned portrayal of Romeo's volatile friend but is also well-known to American audiences through the TV shows 'Lost' and, now, 'Claws.' Do the authors really not know who Harold Perrineau is? Another section refers to Colin Farrell as a British actor. Colin. Farrell. Is. Irish. Irish people are NOT British, and since Cheung lived with a British family (Christian, Louise, and David Bale - brother, sister, and father) for years, shouldn't he know this? Cheung also has a low opinion of Winona Ryder, a former friend of Bale, his co-star in 'Little Women,' and the one who introduced Bale to his wife, Sandra (Sibi) Blazic. He describes the petite star as foul-mouthed and rude. The whole narration has to be taken with a small grain of salt because Cheung obviously has a bone to pick with the Bale clan. They owe him thousands of dollars, if he genuinely never received a paycheck for working as Bale's personal and social media assistant from the earliest days of the Internet. Maybe he's exaggerating, or maybe he has cherry-picked the incidents that paint Christian Bale and his semi-con-artist father in the worst possible light. I don't know. It was still an interesting, relatively quick read. I purchased this book at Barnes and Noble with my own funds as was not obligated in any way to review it.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Haifa

    that was a huge waste of time and money i regret spending money even though i bought it used ( smart move by the seller) really poor writing 😩

  8. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    *spoilers* I must admit, that as an avid Christian fan (I suppose that makes me a "Balehead"), I was slightly biased going into this book! However, after finishing, I feel fairly certain that I can stick with my original assumptions about Christians character. Harrison Cheung, while maybe Christians publicist and supposed friend, didnt actually provide any FACT that I couldnt find myself on the internet! (which, according to him, is all thanks to his hard work lol). The book is really repetitive *spoilers* I must admit, that as an avid Christian fan (I suppose that makes me a "Balehead"), I was slightly biased going into this book! However, after finishing, I feel fairly certain that I can stick with my original assumptions about Christians character. Harrison Cheung, while maybe Christians publicist and supposed friend, didnt actually provide any FACT that I couldnt find myself on the internet! (which, according to him, is all thanks to his hard work lol). The book is really repetitive, especially in the first few chapters, and is really focused more on David Bale (Christians father), than Christian himself. Ive always thought that, since we dont ever see or hear from Christian that often, that he probably didnt enjoy publicity, and I was ok with that. His privacy should be allowed, no matter what profession he's in. As a matter of fact, I like his mysteriousness, and find it more enjoyable to have short gaps in the release of his films! The anticipation makes it more exciting! As for the parts of the book where Harrison talks about Christians odd behaviour...well, they just dont seem completely believeable. Especially the letter about the fan who needs to be eliminated with a screwdriver through the eye. C'mon. Really? He finishes the book, again, with facts that ANYONE could find, as he doesnt have first hand accounts to recall after his fallout with Christian. Needless to say, Im STILL a Balehead after reading, and will continue to go to the movies to see Christians films! Even if he decides to curse out a light guy on a movie set again, I'll still be a fan! lol

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline Sauer

    Amateur writing, bitter tone to the entire book and it did nothing but give me a bigger appreciation for Hollywood's rare leading man, Christian Bale. He doesn't follow rules, has a temper (who doesn't?) and has more talent in his pinky than half of the crap producers give their audiences. This author tries hard to get readers to dislike - even be disturbed by - Christian Bale but his efforts come across as merely desperate attempts. Now, yes, I am bias being that I'm a "Balehead" but I know shi Amateur writing, bitter tone to the entire book and it did nothing but give me a bigger appreciation for Hollywood's rare leading man, Christian Bale. He doesn't follow rules, has a temper (who doesn't?) and has more talent in his pinky than half of the crap producers give their audiences. This author tries hard to get readers to dislike - even be disturbed by - Christian Bale but his efforts come across as merely desperate attempts. Now, yes, I am bias being that I'm a "Balehead" but I know shit talking when I see/read/hear it. And this, my friends, is the epitome of shit talking. 1 star, only because of the pictures Harrison included!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Pickyreaderinblack

    (Pardon me if I've already commented.) I will NOT read this book because of the comments shared here on Goodreads. Thank you everyone, by the way! I admire Mr. Bale's commitment to his craft and will not indulge in coat-tail riding sleaze by a person who is apparently disgruntled and desperate, so writes an unauthorized biography. Just because Mr. Bale is an actor doesn't mean his private life should be up for grabs by some fame-hungry sycophant. Shame on Cheung for exploiting the trust of a per (Pardon me if I've already commented.) I will NOT read this book because of the comments shared here on Goodreads. Thank you everyone, by the way! I admire Mr. Bale's commitment to his craft and will not indulge in coat-tail riding sleaze by a person who is apparently disgruntled and desperate, so writes an unauthorized biography. Just because Mr. Bale is an actor doesn't mean his private life should be up for grabs by some fame-hungry sycophant. Shame on Cheung for exploiting the trust of a person who obviously cherishes his right to privacy.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Shannon

    What???? Can I get the hours I spent reading this back?

  12. 5 out of 5

    Juniper

    Really close to gutter press gossip, really. Harrison Cheung wants his readers to believe that he will reveal major facts about Christian Bale, while he, in fact writes a lot more about David Bale (Christian's father). Also, the author seems to have known in fact very little about Bale and his relatives: it seems like he just exposes his own presumptions about the realtionships between the various members of the Bale family. After all, the actor is known to be a really private person and I doubt h Really close to gutter press gossip, really. Harrison Cheung wants his readers to believe that he will reveal major facts about Christian Bale, while he, in fact writes a lot more about David Bale (Christian's father). Also, the author seems to have known in fact very little about Bale and his relatives: it seems like he just exposes his own presumptions about the realtionships between the various members of the Bale family. After all, the actor is known to be a really private person and I doubt he would confide into his PA...

  13. 5 out of 5

    CreativeLEGOGirl

    First off I dnfed this book and only made it to page 12. I picked up this book because I really like the Batman movies. But I felt like I was reading a fan fiction about Bale. It also seemed like Harrison was trying to make it his story and there was a lot of his opinions. With all that I just gave up.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Aditya Lakshay

    I picked up this book as I was (still am) intrigued by the enigma that is Christian Bale. Charts his progress (career + personal life) from the 90s till the early 2010s. A good insight into how one of the finest actors of his generation honed his craft, his immense will power to go over and beyond for a rule and above all, a need and greed to stand out from the swarm of actors.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Rhodes

    Great read. Very eye opening I think the book was a great account of the private life of Christian Bale. Doesn't change my mind about his movies and whether I will watch them. It just shows that he is a human being like the rest of us Great read. Very eye opening I think the book was a great account of the private life of Christian Bale. Doesn't change my mind about his movies and whether I will watch them. It just shows that he is a human being like the rest of us

  16. 5 out of 5

    Taju Noor

    Christian Bale is by far the best Batman/Bruce Wayne ever portrayed on the big screen. I think his journey helped him become BATMAN.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

    An engaging, though biased, book.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sahara

    Okay honestly I was really looking foward to reading this, I thought hey I can finally know Christian on a personal level instead of him being elevated above me! Instead I got very dissapointed in that I was greeted with a tasty morsel ( a few inside details about Christian's personality and habits) but I didn't get to finish the meal. I was like yah Harrison tell me something I don't know. Hmmm Huh Hmmmm Huh ...Check...Check...Bloody Check! I already know that! I frickin already knew about the on Okay honestly I was really looking foward to reading this, I thought hey I can finally know Christian on a personal level instead of him being elevated above me! Instead I got very dissapointed in that I was greeted with a tasty morsel ( a few inside details about Christian's personality and habits) but I didn't get to finish the meal. I was like yah Harrison tell me something I don't know. Hmmm Huh Hmmmm Huh ...Check...Check...Bloody Check! I already know that! I frickin already knew about the one dimensional facts about his wife and him. Tell me more about his habits and disposition...the point of the book I feel was to be a more personal level with Christian while being portraying him with a fair mind (the good and the bad) It's not enough for me to witness imagery and descriptions about Christian's home in LA...forget locations can people please feel like we're getting to know him on a personal note... Its NOT good enough!! I am rewarding Harrison's efforts with a thumbs down simply because he is throwing his audience scraps of menial information fluff than that good ol' stuffing in a turkey! Harrison and fellow readers...how could can I express my extreme dissapointment...I know Cheung knew that fans would want in depth analysis or at the very least all or most of the biography to be personal recounts. If I wanted a bland fecking story that was basically a frickin Wikipedia timeline then I would have reread that crap online! There are no words that could possibly convey my utter dissapointment and contempt for this half-assed book. Cheung is a tease...only about 5 photos of which only 2 showcased any depth or emotion from Christian. Most of the story was purely factual and the miniscule areas were about Cheung and David Bale's relationship so be ready to be dissapointed alot if you're looking for an actual personal biography revealing traits of Christian that the public doesn't already know or can infer about. Over and over I do this [image error] Then I bull back [image error] before I say

  19. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman is an intimate look at the actor, Christian Bale, by his assistant and former publicist, Harrison Cheung, along with reporter Nicola Pittam. According to Cheung, he's the one who rocketed Bale to stardom. Cheung began an online fan site for Bale long before such sites were the norm. The Internet was still pretty much in its infancy. For years, he focused on Bale and was the driving force behind Bale's rise to stardom. So much so, that Bale ev Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman is an intimate look at the actor, Christian Bale, by his assistant and former publicist, Harrison Cheung, along with reporter Nicola Pittam. According to Cheung, he's the one who rocketed Bale to stardom. Cheung began an online fan site for Bale long before such sites were the norm. The Internet was still pretty much in its infancy. For years, he focused on Bale and was the driving force behind Bale's rise to stardom. So much so, that Bale eventually hired him. Cheung ended up living and working with Bale for almost ten years. The book doesn’t focus on Cheung, though. It's a tale of Bale, who doesn’t come across as a particularly likable person. Cheung does, however, show how committed and driven he is. Bale throws himself completely into characters. Doing whatever it took to become that character, including losing incredible amounts of weight when the role called for it. He would change himself into that character. At times, Bale is unable to control his anger, either with his family or on set. He does, also, come across as an actor totally immersed in the characters he played and dedicated to stepping into their skin, no matter the cost to himself. We are taken from when Christian Bale was a child actor to years later when he took on his most known role as Batman in the movie, The Dark Knight. And I admit that as soon as I finished reading Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman, I loaded my copy of The Dark Knight and watched it. Having a new understanding of the actor, I saw the movie and the role differently. Knowing how completely Christian Bale becomes the character he's playing makes you worry about what kind of toll it takes on him. This book isn't a fan book. Christian doesn't always come across as likable. But in ways, it helps the reader understand Christian. Cheung shows the sad childhood of Bale. Keeping the family afloat and housed fell on Bale's shoulders, even as a child. This is an interesting book, whether you're in the movie industry or not. For those who are entering the field, it can be a cautionary tale. For those of us who are not, it's a look behind the red curtain and into obsession. I give Christian Bale: The Inside Story of the Darkest Batman a rating of Hel-of-a-Story. ************** Disclaimer: I do not know Christian Bale. I do not know Harrison Cheung, although I did meet him when we were both doing readings at Central Market.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Trey Nowell

    After reading this book, I think there is some truth to Bale having some anger issues, but I can't help but think the author is writing this more out of resentment than anything. Some of the quotes he gives (especially Harrison's Xmas card from Bale) make me believe either this was partially fabricated to make Bale look bad or the role of American Psycho was not an acting stretch. Bale has been one of my favs especially at the time of The Machinist. Leraning he took that role so seriously was re After reading this book, I think there is some truth to Bale having some anger issues, but I can't help but think the author is writing this more out of resentment than anything. Some of the quotes he gives (especially Harrison's Xmas card from Bale) make me believe either this was partially fabricated to make Bale look bad or the role of American Psycho was not an acting stretch. Bale has been one of my favs especially at the time of The Machinist. Leraning he took that role so seriously was refreshing to see with young Hollywood actors on the rise. I liked the book for the history of the Bale family struggling and adding a human element to the life of an actor as being far more than glamorous, but it did begin the first 30 or so pages in a very boring fashion. You really have to get to American Psycho almost before the book begins to get interesting. In short, I give it a 2 stars bc there is some fact behind it, but I feel it was more of a "I'm getting back at you" book that tries to show Bale as not an A-list actor when clearly he is.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tony Y

    The notoriously secretive and private actor even refused to be a part of his own biography, it appears. The book is more the story of the influence that the author claims to have had, along with Christian's father, on the course of Bale's career. All of this is loosely wound around Christian's life. While mildly interesting the book is only about 10% about Christian Bale as a person. 25% is dedicated to the author's self congratulatory rambling about how Bale's meteoric rise to fame after Batman The notoriously secretive and private actor even refused to be a part of his own biography, it appears. The book is more the story of the influence that the author claims to have had, along with Christian's father, on the course of Bale's career. All of this is loosely wound around Christian's life. While mildly interesting the book is only about 10% about Christian Bale as a person. 25% is dedicated to the author's self congratulatory rambling about how Bale's meteoric rise to fame after Batman Begins is due solely to the internet campaigning he started. Another 25% is about Christian's father, David Bale, and his influence on Christian's career along with the many deceptions, lies, and financial blunders he made in an attempt to find success and fame through his son. That 25% paints a very disparaging picture of David Bale. The remainder is all regurgitated information that can be found through IMDB.com and a quick internet search on even the least adequate of search engines.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cara

    Certainly a good read for all Christian Bale fans... but it doesn't exactly paint Bale into the best light. At this point I am not sure there's really any redeeming qualities about the man aside from his superior acting skills... but the book is obviously biased as it seems as though Cheung had quite the falling out with Bale... of course at Bale's doing. But what I want to know is why this guy continued to work for Christian Bale for so long with the "promise of a salary some day." So who's sid Certainly a good read for all Christian Bale fans... but it doesn't exactly paint Bale into the best light. At this point I am not sure there's really any redeeming qualities about the man aside from his superior acting skills... but the book is obviously biased as it seems as though Cheung had quite the falling out with Bale... of course at Bale's doing. But what I want to know is why this guy continued to work for Christian Bale for so long with the "promise of a salary some day." So who's side of the story is accurate? It does become a little less entertaining once Cheung and Bale part ways, as the first hand accounts which make the book a good read cease, and the remainder is written based really on news stories and things we've all read in the papers.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Cathy

    entertaining quick read, satisfied my us weekly & people mag loving dark side's thirst for celebrity gossip. it's not especially well-written but it gives an insider scoop on how bale got to where he is today. the web (and its legions of obsessed "baleheads") built word of mouth buzz for bale before WOM was even a buzz word. knowing this much about bale kind of ruins my aspirations of having him as a future significant other (spoiler alert: he's a bit whiny and moody and a diva), but i did enjoy entertaining quick read, satisfied my us weekly & people mag loving dark side's thirst for celebrity gossip. it's not especially well-written but it gives an insider scoop on how bale got to where he is today. the web (and its legions of obsessed "baleheads") built word of mouth buzz for bale before WOM was even a buzz word. knowing this much about bale kind of ruins my aspirations of having him as a future significant other (spoiler alert: he's a bit whiny and moody and a diva), but i did enjoy getting a hollywood crash course on fame nonetheless. worthwhile. just don't think too hard about it.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Kleback

    This is a celebrity bio written by someone who helped Christian Bale become the first actor with a tremendous online presence. As with many of these books, the relationship that brought the author close to the subject has severed, so it has a little bit of a sad undertone. However, it does give a lot of insight into Bale's personality and intensity. Interesting read for any Baleheads out there. This is a celebrity bio written by someone who helped Christian Bale become the first actor with a tremendous online presence. As with many of these books, the relationship that brought the author close to the subject has severed, so it has a little bit of a sad undertone. However, it does give a lot of insight into Bale's personality and intensity. Interesting read for any Baleheads out there.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Zee Monodee

    An eye-opening account of what is really a very private person, making you see the human being behind the 'myth' and show-bizz persona. Made for some intense reading in parts, but you really got the feeling that you were getting to see the true person Christian Bale is...well, as much as can be possible without actually knowing him *grin* An eye-opening account of what is really a very private person, making you see the human being behind the 'myth' and show-bizz persona. Made for some intense reading in parts, but you really got the feeling that you were getting to see the true person Christian Bale is...well, as much as can be possible without actually knowing him *grin*

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    So basically his ex-personal assistant/publicist whatever never got paid (wth who works for 10 years for free and is fine with that?) and wrote this book to maybe recoup some money. I learned some things about Christian I didn't know. Cheung acts like his fans wouldn't have ever heard about him if he hadn't made him popular on the internet. Is he crazy? I've loved him since Newsies! So basically his ex-personal assistant/publicist whatever never got paid (wth who works for 10 years for free and is fine with that?) and wrote this book to maybe recoup some money. I learned some things about Christian I didn't know. Cheung acts like his fans wouldn't have ever heard about him if he hadn't made him popular on the internet. Is he crazy? I've loved him since Newsies!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Bethia

    This book reminds me of the celebrity actors who rely on the public to adore them and make them wildly wealthy by attending screenings of their films and renting or purchasing their DVD's and then treat the same adoring fans with utter disdain. Blech. This book reminds me of the celebrity actors who rely on the public to adore them and make them wildly wealthy by attending screenings of their films and renting or purchasing their DVD's and then treat the same adoring fans with utter disdain. Blech.

  28. 4 out of 5

    I Contain

    I was slightly disappointed by this one. The author claims to know Bale personally and have great, wacky stories, but this book really only recounts scandal previously known to the public. I was expecting to read more satisfying trash than this.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    Think of this book as, what if Lloyd from Entourage wrote a book about Ari. I'm sure I'm not the first to say it and hell the book itself referenced it. I think Christian is a talented actor but man does he get angry. Think of this book as, what if Lloyd from Entourage wrote a book about Ari. I'm sure I'm not the first to say it and hell the book itself referenced it. I think Christian is a talented actor but man does he get angry.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    Obviously the author is still slightly bitter, but was very close to Christian Bale and his father. Amateur writing. I'm still a Christian Bale fan after reading the book. Obviously the author is still slightly bitter, but was very close to Christian Bale and his father. Amateur writing. I'm still a Christian Bale fan after reading the book.

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