I do believe the part about WB execs INSISTING
on Dark Knight being in the title. Its why the title sounds so lame, they felt they HAD
to have it in there suddenly instead of just trusting Nolan and marketing the film in the same effective way they did TDK
Clayface by extension has been rumored as a possible villain...
Okay, I read that there some sort of connection in the comics between Julie Madison and some incarnation of Clayface, but it's bizarre that anyone would think Nolan would use such a fanciful character as Clayface.
Not if it's the FIRST
Clayface when he was just a human. Before he became the Ultimate Clayface we now know.
The original Clayface, Basil Karlo, appeared in Detective Comics#40. He is an actor who is driven mad when he hears of a remake of the classic horror film he had starred in, The Terror, even though he is to be one of the advising staff. Donning the mask of the film's villain, Clayface, he embarks on a murder spree among the cast and crew of the remake. He is foiled by Batman and and Robin. He reappears in Detective Comics #49 (March 1941) after the prison ambulance he is riding in plunges off a cliff. He once again dons the mask of Clayface and targets Bruce Wayne's fiancée, Julie Madison. Once again, the Dynamic Duo foil the evil Karlo. A movie buff, Batman creator Bob Kane states that the character was partially inspired by the Lon Chaney, Sr. version of The Phantom of the Opera and that the name of the character comes from Boris Karloff.
Granted I don't see a way to work in a mad actor on a killing spree into a TDK
followup but it would be a way to showcase a villain that has yet to appear on the big screen. He and Killer Croc are about the last big ones to not appear and Bane still needs to be done right but I digress.
Black Mask is a great second tier villain so I could buy into that rumor, at least it makes sense structure wise.