According to GeeksOfDoom, the word coming out of Chicago is that they’ve begun hiring staff and crew with a view to commencing pre-production early next year.
Batman On Film has multiple sources “” some who worked on both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight “” saying that things are shaping up for pre-production to start in February 2009 in order to shoot the actual movie in the summer of 2009.
Should the rumour be true, we’d expect the third Batman movie to fall some time in summer 2010, probably early July.
However, it goes without saying that this is entirely speculative at this point. Some weeks you’re led to believe that Johnny Depp has been cast, the next is that Christian Bale hasn’t heard anything about a movie. I estimate that by next week the rumour will be that the movie was shot back to back with The Dark Knight, in line for a December 25th 2008 release.