Fascinating as both a "what could have been" and a "holy shit, studio executives speak exactly like you'd think they would."
Though already pretty much the entire cast of Inception has been cast in a Batman film (sorry, Ellen Page, you aren't leggy enough to be Catwoman), Warner Bros. executives apparently hoped it would be outlier Leonardo DiCaprio who would appear in The Dark Knight Rises. Storywriter David Goyer recently told Empire Magazine (via) that an early post-Dark Knight meeting with he, Nolan and Warner Bros.--presumably back before Inception's contrivances had yet been explained--included a discussion of the next film's villain, at which point Warner executives said:
"Obviously it's gonna be The Riddler, and we want it to be Leonardo DiCaprio."
OBVIOUSLY. But no, obviously that did not happen, and instead DiCaprio was placed in a dream within a dream, and we obviously now have Tom Hardy's Bane as the central villain in The Dark Knight Rises. Still, sort of interesting to ponder. Also interesting to ponder if this means someone once said, "Obviously it's gonna be Mr. Freeze and Poison Ivy, and we want it to be Arnold Schwarzenegger and Uma Thurman--and find a place for the girl from Clueless, too." Because that person was insane.