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Carl Grissom

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Carl Grissom
Batman 1989 - Grissom (infobox)
General Information
Real name: Carl Grissom
Aliases: None
Alignment: Bad
Affiliation: Alicia Hunt (mistress)
Jack Napier (right-hand man)
Characteristics: Gender - Male
Eyes - Brown
Hair - Grey
Portrayed by: Jack Palance
Appearances: Batman

"What kind of damage are we looking at?"
―Carl Grissom[src]

Boss Carl Grissom was a powerful crime lord created specifically for the 1989 film titled Batman. He was portrayed by the late Jack Palance.


Carl Grissom is the most powerful crime lord in Gotham City, with some or even most of the Gotham City Police Department (except Commissioner Gordon) on his payroll, including Lieutenant Max Eckhardt. When the recently-elected District Attorney Harvey Dent begins to make connections between Grissom and Axis Chemicals, Grissom panics, knowing that the evidence stored at the factory is enough to have him sent to the electric chair.


Carl Grissom speaking to Jack Napier.

Grissom also finds out somewhere along the line that his mistress, Alicia Hunt, has been having an affair with his second-in-command, Jack Napier. So to take his revenge, Grissom sends Napier and his crew to Axis Chemicals to seize the evidence before Dent can. At the same time, he calls Lt. Eckhardt and orders him to lead a team of police officers to kill Napier. However, the plan goes wrong when Commissioner Gordon intervenes to take Napier in alive. Eckhardt then attempts to escape, but is shot in the chest and killed by a vengeful Napier. Napier is then confronted by Batman, but falls into a vat of chemicals, leaving Grissom to believe that Jack is dead, much to his delight.

The next day in the night, after a shower, Grissom has a visit from Napier, who survived the fall in the vat of chemicals and now wants revenge for setting him up. Grissom feigns relief, but Napier scoffs him, playing wise to Grissom's moves. Grissom then pleads for his life by offering to cut a new deal with Napier, but Napier refuses and instead reveals his new identity: The Joker, with green hair, white skin, and a widened, permanent red grin. At that point, the Joker shoots Grissom to his death and takes over his crime empire.

Behind the scenesEdit

  • Grissom character's inspiration was from Batman's comic book gangster enemies Rupert Thorne and Sal Maroni. Interestingly enough, an earlier draft of the script included Rupert Thorne in Grissom's place, having sent Joe Chill to murder Thomas Wayne, whom had been running against Thorne for City Council.
  • Carmine Falcone may have also been the inspiration, like Falcone, Grissom appears to be a very powerful mob leader who has some control over Gotham.


Screen CapturesEdit

Production PhotosEdit

Production Stills (from by James Sawyer)Edit

External linksEdit

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