LONDON (AP) -- Christopher Nolan is defending fans irate over negative reviews of "The Dark Knight Rises."
The director says fans are very passionate about the characters.
He noted that Batman has been around over 70 years, so people are attached to the character.
While the final piece of Nolan's "Dark Knight" trilogy has gotten mostly positive reviews, a few critics, including The Associated Press' Christy Lemire, panned it. Fan response to those critics became so venomous on the review site RottenTomatoes.com that it suspended user comments.
Nolan, speaking Wednesday at the London premiere of "Dark Knight," also weighed in on conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh's contention that the villain in the movie, Bane, was an attempt to make a disparaging link to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's former company Bain Capital.
Nolan said it was a "very peculiar comment to make."
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