SDCC 2019: 'Pennyworth' star Jack Bannon says Michael Caine was his favorite Alfred, expect 'swag' from 'Epix' version
'Pennyworth' earned rave reviews during the San Diego Comic-Con 2019 screening of its pilot episode and Jack Bannon who plays the iconic butler joked that he spent longer auditioning for the role than shooting. Bannon termed the experience an arduous one but then understood the pressures as there were a lot of people to be pleased.
"It really shows that they wanted to find the right person," he said. "There were ups and downs and I had to go buy a suit, turn up in one, do my hair and it was a lot of fun, but Danny (Cannon) and Bruno (Heller) made it clear and they thought I was the right (choice) and I could do it, so I am really grateful to them for that."
He also explained that Michael Caine was his favorite of the many actors who played Alfred Pennyworth. "He (Caine) was my favorite and he’s the one who said he’s ex-SAS. In this series, we examine that SAS background."
Caine played Alfred in the 'The Dark Knight' trilogy series that featured Christian Bale as Batman. "For research, we had a list of films and we made some Pennyworth playlists and we learned more about the clothes, the cars from these playlists."
When asked about how he went about honoring Alfred, Bannon said that while the fun thing about origins was that people would know where the character ends up, "it's about putting in the work." He remarked, "The accent... and Alfred, he’s got swag. That’s something we have never seen before. The world that Bruno created in the script allowed me to delve into his physicality and his fashion. Generally, everything is about Gotham and in this case, it is London."
Bannon also delved into Alfred's psyche. "The thing about Alfred is he’s two steps ahead of everyone. Here, he’s a guy who can get himself in and out of any situation," he opined. While he agreed he was skeptical at the start, as the show would find it challenging to garner a new fanbase, Bannon also said it was a "brilliant position" to be in. "If you are an existing batman fan, you’re going to love it. I think it will bring new fans in and please the existing ones."
'Pennyworth' hits Epix July 28.