July 17, 2012 10:54 PM EST
‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Premiere: Anne Hathaway, Christian Bale And Hailee Steinfeld Hit The Black Carpet [PHOTOS]
The cast for the highly-anticipated summer blockbuster -- and the final Christopher Nolan installment of the "Batman" trilogy -- hit the black carpet on Monday night in New York City for the premiere of "The Dark Knight Rises."
Director Christopher Nolan and actors Christian Bale, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Morgan Freeman were in attendance for the premiere at the AMC Lincoln Square Theater in New York City.
Both Hathaway and Cotillard wore white for the occasion, pixie-haired Hathaway showed off a Grecian gown with a dramatic flowing train below a draped back, peplum and a deep V rhinestone neck and Cotillard sported a boatneck frock with ruffled net short skirt. Bale, Nolan, Hardy and Freeman all rocked classic black suits while Gordon-Levitt chose grey and Oldman taupe. Juno Temple stunned in a LBD and a ballerina bun.
Celebrities including Leighton Meester also posed on the red carpet before the premiere. Meester, who arrived fashionably late, dressed completely down in a black maxi paired with a baggy knit sweater and canvas sneakers, and Zoe Kravitz, chose a black cutaway opaque dress and strappy sandals. Actress Hailee Steinfeld stunned in a turquoise flowered frock with platform brown and black sandals while Melania Trump wore a teal sleeveless dress with a pleated skirt.
"Dark Knight" WAGS (or is that just exclusive to the NBA?) also glammed up for the premiere attached to their men. Bale's wife, Sibi Blanzic, opted for black, as well as Nolan's film producer wife, Emma Thomas, who also wore black. Tom Hardy's fiancée, the always stylish Charlotte Riley, wore a strapless brocade A-line dress in baby blue.
The final installment of Nolan's "Dark Knight" triology opens in theaters this Friday. The film stars Bale as Bruce Wayne and Hathaway as Selina Kyle, also known as the coquettish Catwoman. "The Dark Knight Rises," which is poised to top the summer's box office, is the third and final time Bale will play Batman under the direction of Nolan.
"It's bittersweet, but I think though that Chris is such a good storyteller, if he says it's the right time to finish, it's the right time to finish," Bale told E! News on the black carpet.
"It's the only character I've played three times and there's certainly a lot more stories that could be told, he's a really interesting character, but enough's enough. It's nice to leave when we're out on top instead of leaving people wanting less."
The film marks Hathaway's debut in the "Batman" triology. Co-star Gordon-Levitt described Hathaway's seductive Catwoman character as a "badass."
"I'll tell you what -- she's sexy as hell, but she's not doing the typical, like, 'Oh, I'm a vampy, sexy girl,'" Gordon-Levitt told E!. "She's strong. She's a badass, and I think that's cool that she's setting an example that you don't have to be a girly-girl to be sexy."
"The Dark Knight Rises" is slated to surpass the second film in revenue. "The Dark Knight" grossed more than $533 million at the box office in 2008 and won two Oscars. And so far reviews of the latest installment bolster claims it will be another blockbuster. In a review, Todd McCarthy, a critic for the Hollywood Reporter, called the new film the best Nolan "Batman" yet.
"Entirely enveloping and at times unnerving in a relevant way one would never have imagined, as a cohesive whole this ranks as the best of Nolan's trio, even if it lacks -- how could it not? -- an element as unique as Heath Ledger's immortal turn in The Dark Knight," McCarthy wrote for the Hollywood Reporter. "It's a blockbuster by any standard."
Justin Chang, a critic for Variety, wrote : "Few blockbusters have borne so heavy a burden of audience expectation as Christopher Nolan's final Batman caper.
"And the filmmaker steps up to the occasion with a cataclysmic vision of Gotham City under siege in 'The Dark Knight Rises.' ... Nolan's trilogy-capping epic sends Batman to a literal pit of despair, restoring him to the core of a legend that questions, and powerfully affirms, the need for heroism in a fallen world."
View the slideshow to see photos of Monday night's "The Dark Knight Rises" premiere in New York City.