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Mr. Nolan’s first two Batman pictures have netted three-quarters of a billion dollars domestically — and surely will top $1 billion shortly after “The Dark Knight Rises” opens.

“The Dark Knight” set a record for the biggest box-office opening of all time in 2008, just as Mr. Burton’s “Batman” did in 1989 upon its release. Even reboots that don’t spawn new franchises or shatter box-office marks do OK for themselves: “Superman Returns” limped to just more than $200 million domestically, a result that was disappointing but far from embarrassing.

These pictures are so lucrative and so reliable that it’s a safe bet plans are under way secretly to reboot the Batman franchise as soon as possible.

Obviously, superhero pictures are filling a gap in the marketplace: Critical weariness of reboots aside, audiences love them. We are starved for tales of unambiguous heroism, the sort of film that gives us good guys and bad guys and resolution, self-sacrifice and self-reliance.

When audiences tire of Spider-Man’s web-slinging, they’ll stop turning out. Until then, don’t be surprised to see a Justin Bieber-anchored, Wes Anderson-directed “The Spectacular Spider-Man” headed your way in 2022.