Speaking on Charlie Rose, Bale admitted that his first meeting with Russell about playing Dicky Eklund in The Fighter was more successful than his try-out for the part of Conrad Vig in the 1999 Iraq war drama.
"It was nothing like the first meeting that David and I ever had," Bale said when asked about his relationship with the director. "I won’t go into it, but I auditioned for Three Kings and it didn’t go very well for me!"
Discussing his meeting with Bale for Three Kings, Russell said: "I had already cast my friend Spike Jonze, so I was probably doing it as a favour to the studio."
"Good on you for just throwing that away!" he added to the Batman actor.
Bale explained that Russell was able to bring a lightness of touch to the biopic of boxer Mickey Ward (Mark Wahlberg) and his troubled brother Eklund.
"There was this great earnestness to [the story], but when you meet Mickey and Dicky there's a silliness and vibrancy and Dicky's like Tigger, he's buoyant and light-hearted," Bale explained. "He loves people and he wants to chat and hug, and David seemed to me to get that."
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