DC Comics kicking off Batman's 80th anniversary celebration in Austin with 1.5M bats

    Batman's 80th anniversary celebration is kicking off at SXSW (Photo: CBS Austin)

    Batman's 80th anniversary is being celebrated in Austin at-- where else? -- the Congress Avenue bridge on Friday evening.

    DC Comics selected South by Southwest to celebrate the cape crusader's eight decades, the centerpiece being what the company calls "an incredible moment when more than 1.5 million bats fly into the night over Austin’s famous Congress Bridge."

    What that means in relation to the bridge's well-known bat population is unclear. Some media outlets report that DC is releasing the bats, but that's probably not the case.

    The celebration of all things Batman at SXSW will also include multiple fan experiences, photo opportunities, and limited-edition merchandise.

    DC will also honor the caped crusader with a Batman-inspired mural painted by Austin artist MEZ DATA. It was unveiled at the Native Hostel at 807 E. 4th Street Friday night.

    Back in 1939, the world's greatest detective made his first appearance as a character in "Detective Comics." That developed into numerous TV shows, films and books over the next eight decades.

    The SXSW events kickoff the #LongLiveTheBat celebration that will continue throughout the year.

    The actual 80th anniversary of Batman is March 30 and Batman Day is September 21.

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