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What is the Lazarus Pit?  So far, images have been released from the set in Jodhpur, India.  A possible Lazarus Pit is being constructed for the villain Ra’s al Ghul.  Coincidentally, actor Josh Pence (young Ra’s al Ghul) has been spotted on-set.  A green screen background lines the bottom of the pit.  Scheduled for a two-day shoot, what does director/writer Christopher Nolan have in mind?Origin:  Lazarus Pit

A Lazarus pit is a natural phenomenon primarily used by Ra’s al Ghul to regenerate his body.  The substance that fills each pit is a chemical blend of unknown composition, seemingly originating from somewhere within the Earth’s crust. For an unknown reason, it bubbles to the surface only at certain key points around the globe, typically at the junction of ley lines. The chemicals can rejuvenate the sick and the dying (and even the technically deceased as long as they have not yet truly died), but will typically kill a healthy user. In addition, it appears to act as a youth restorative sometimes, decreasing the age of a user depending how long they were in the pit.

The fan camp is split into two factions.  One says it is a Lazarus Pit, while the other believes it to be a vat of Venom.  The Venom Vat will figure into the story with the villain Bane played by Tom Hardy.  This is what has been leaked from the set in India.

“Eyewitnesses and crew members told us of a particular scene being filmed,” the site reports, “Where a bald-headed child wearing ragged clothes emerges from the well and pulls his hood over his head.  From the conversations, we reckon this is a young Bane, emerging from a vat of Venom, trained by Pence’s Ra’s al Ghul.  The years of addiction to Venom builds him to be a massive monster with amped up  senses, intelligence, and physical prowess.”

Origin:  Venom Vat

Venom is a potently addictive strength-enhancing super-steroid. According to JSA Classified #17 (November 2006), Venom is based on the Miraclo formula developed at Bannerman Pharmaceuticals, the drug company formerly owned by Rex Tyler, the original Hourman. The first appearance of the drug was in a five-part story arc, Batman: Venom, in the Batman anthology series, Legends of the Dark Knight, issues 16-20. Batman became addicted to the drug while searching for a way to surpass his limitations. Later, it resurfaced as the power source for Bane, who used it to overpower and cripple Batman in the Knightfall story arc.

This research is far from perfect, but a thorough understanding of both potential plot devices may give some insight into what Christopher Nolan is up to.  The fact remains:  only Christopher Nolan will know what Christopher Nolan is thinking.

“The Dark Knight Rises” will be released on July 20th, 2012.  The film will star Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Juno Temple, Josh Pence, Nestor Carbonell, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  Christopher and Jonathan Nolan wrote the screenplay, from a story by Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer.  Christopher Nolan directs.

Sources: Geektyrant.com, dc.wikia.com, screenrant.com, batman.wikia.com