Every once in a while a unique opportunity presents itself to connect with people I would never cross paths with in my day to day life. Thanks to Film Master MEA, I was part of a team commissioned by Warner Brothers, DC Comics and the USO (United Service Organizations) to document their activities on various American Army Bases in Kuwait. We accompanied Jim Lee, Tom King, Nafessa Williams, Candice Patton and Danielle Panabaker on their tour that touched approximately 12,000 service men and women over 3 days. Wait, they also brought the Batmobile! (aka Tumblr).
Danielle Nicole Panabaker (born September 19, 1987) is an American actress. She began acting as a teenager and came to prominence for her roles in the Disney films Stuck in the Suburbs (2004), Sky High (2005) and Read It and Weep (2006), the latter alongside her younger sister Kay Panabaker, and in the HBO miniseries Empire Falls (2005). She won three Young Artist Awards: for guest-starring in an episode of the legal drama television series The Guardian (2004), for her lead role in the TV film Searching for David’s Heart (2005) and for her ensemble performance in the family comedy film Yours, Mine & Ours (2005).
She came to wider attention as a cast member alongside James Woods in the CBS legal drama series Shark (2006–08) and is also noted as a scream queen, having starred in the psychological thriller Mr. Brooks (2007) and the horror films Friday the 13th (2009), The Crazies (2010), John Carpenter‘s The Ward (2010) and Piranha 3DD (2012).
After recurring roles on the drama series Necessary Roughness (2011–13), the crime series Bones (2012–13) and the crime drama Justified (2014), Panabaker guest-starred as Dr. Caitlin Snow on The CW television series Arrow in April 2014. The character was spun off into the main cast of The Flash which premiered that October, and in season two, Panabaker began playing the character’s alter ego Killer Frost in different capacities in conjunction with her role as Snow. The role has led to subsequent guest appearances on Arrow and other Arrowverseseries Supergirl and Legends of Tomorrow.
Candice Kristina Patton (born June 24, 1985 is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Iris West in The CW television series The Flash and her recurring role in the BET television series The Game.
Nafessa Williams (born December 4, 1989) is an American actress. She is most known for her 2011 role as Nicole Gordon in the Meek Mill film Streets, her 2011 role as Deanna Forbes on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live, and her 2016 role as Dr. Charlotte Piel on the CBS drama Code Black. Since 2018, she plays Anissa Pierce in The CW’s Black Lightning.
Tom King is an American author, comic book writer, and ex-CIA officer. He is best known for writing The Vision for Marvel Comics, and The Sheriff of Babylon for the DC Comics imprint Vertigo, his 2012 superhero novel A Once Crowded Sky, and the “Rebirth”-era Batman for DC Comics.
Jim Lee (Korean 이용철; born August 11, 1964) is a Korean American comic-book artist, writer, editor, and publisher. He is currently the Co-Publisher and Chief Creative Officer of DC Comics. In recognition of his work, Lee has received a Harvey Award, Inkpot Award and three Wizard Fan Awards.
The Batmobile depicted in Christopher Nolan‘s trilogy of Batman films owes much to the tank-like vehicle from Frank Miller‘s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns; it has a more “workhorse” appearance than the sleek automobiles seen in previous incarnations. While the films never refer to the vehicle as the “Batmobile”, it is still referred to as such in the scripts. The film’s production designer described the machine as a cross between a Lamborghini and a tank.
In Batman Begins (2005), Bruce Wayne utilizes the prototype vehicle known as the Tumbler designed by Wayne Enterprises’ Applied Sciences Division as a bridging vehicle for the military. It includes weaponry and the ability to boost into a rampless jump. The Tumbler’s armor is strong enough to break through concrete barriers without sustaining significant damage. Two full-sized driving versions were used in exterior shots while another full-sized model with hydraulic enhancements was used in jump sequences. A further full-sized, functional version carried propane tanks to fuel the rocket blast out of the rear nozzle. A radio controlled, 1/3-scale electric model also performed stunts in the film including the roof-top chase sequence. Six vehicles were built for the production of the film.
In The Dark Knight (2008), the Tumbler returns and appears twice in the movie: where Batman captures the Scarecrow, and in a chase where it is damaged by a rocket-propelled grenade fired by the Joker in an attempt to kill Harvey Dent. This causes the Tumbler to crash and Batman to eject from it in the Batpod (a motorcycle formed by the front wheels and struts of the Tumbler) as part of a self-destruct sequence which sees the remainder of the vehicle explode. The Tumbler is also seen in the trailers in a deleted scene, exiting the improvised Batcave.
In The Dark Knight Rises (2012), several Tumblers are seen. Each of these vehicles has the Tumbler’s original military camouflage and is stolen from Wayne Enterprises by Bane‘s gang. The stolen Tumblers are used in Bane’s attempt to control Gotham and are notably seen when the mass of police and criminals are about to battle. One of the Tumblers fires at the crowd of police, only for the Bat to intercept the shot. Three of the Tumblers are destroyed by Batman using the Bat and Selina Kyle using the Batpod.
- Length: 15 feet 2 inches (4.62 m)
- Width: 9 feet 2 inches (2.79 m)
- height 4 feet 11 inches (1.50 m)
- Weight: 2.5 short tons (2.3 t)
- Acceleration: 0–60 in 5.6 seconds.
- Engine: 5.7 litre GM V8 engine capable of 500 horsepower (370 kW).
- Fuel: The “jet engine” on the back of the car was fed by propane tanks.
- Tires: 4 Interco “Super Swamper TSL” tires standing 44/18.5-16.5 in the rear, and two 94.0/15.0-15 Hoosier Checkerboard dirt tires on the front, with superior grip.
Jergen Moor from Film Master chases the Tumbler with his camera
Tom King and Jim Lee getting into the Batmobile
Portrait of SGT Jennifer E. Shick
American Servicemen and Servicewomen against portraits of Kuwaiti Rulers
Serviceman asked me to sign the inside of his jacket
Servicewoman relates to Black Lightning for being a black lesbian superhero
Portrait of Colonel Kate Conkey
Servicemen and Servicewomen opening a hangar gate
K9 and his handler
Demonstration of K9 training
Servicemen playing table tennis
Serviceman crossing a basketball court
Servicemen playing basketball
A personal letter from USO’s COO Alan Reyes thanking me for my contribution. Thank you for this opportunity