'The Batman': Colin Farrell's Penguin would have to be a younger and less-developed Cobblepot, adding to the movie's noir vibe
Farrell is reportedly in talks to play the Penguin, which suggests we might be looking at a much younger version of the villain. All things considered, it looks like this will be a very different movie having very little in common with previous adaptations of the 'Batman' comics.
Matt Reeves is still keeping his plans for 'The Batman' quite close to his chest but with recent casting reports we're starting to get an idea of what the film might be like. According to a report from Deadline, Colin Farrell ('Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them', 'Total Recall') is being considered for the role of Oswald Cobblepot, the criminal mastermind known as the Penguin.
Farrell's casting as the Penguin marks a serious break from what fans have grown to expect from the character. In Tim Burton's 1992 movie 'Batman Returns', the Penguin was played by Danny DeVito as a monstrous, deformed villain with a vendetta against Gotham City and that characterization has stuck ever since.
All the casting news that has come in so far, like the casting of Paul Dano as the Riddler and Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, suggests that the movie will focus on the early adventures of Bruce Wayne/Batman (Robert Pattinson), back when he was still establishing himself as a hero in Gotham. A younger Batman suggests a younger Rogues Gallery as well so there's a pretty good chance that the villains of the movie may not have fully developed into the supervillains we know they'll eventually become.
Farrell's Penguin is unlikely to look much like the portly, wacky villain that we're used to seeing and we wouldn't be too surprised if his character took more from Robin Lord Taylor's version of the character from the TV show 'Gotham' instead of previous movie versions. Considering Reeves is planning on giving a crime-noir feel to 'The Batman', it makes sense that this might be a version of Cobblepot who is still a younger gangster and not the twisted old man he is in the comics.
All things considered, it looks like this will be a very different movie having very little in common with previous adaptations of the 'Batman' comics. For the first time, we might just get a proper noir story out of Batman, something hardcore fans of the character have been begging for for years.
However, this wildly different take on the character and his villains may end up getting mixed reactions from the fanbase. For those who haven't delved particularly deeply into Batman's comicbook mythos, seeing the Caped Crusader in a detective noir story may be a little jarring, especially after the high-power superheroics that the character has gotten into in the Christopher Nolan movies and the DC Extended Universe films 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice' and 'Justice League'.
That's not to say it would be a bad idea. After all, there's a reason Batman is called the World's Greatest Detective and for the core of the Batman fandom, this is the movie we both need and deserve.
'The Batman' will arrive in theaters on June 25, 2021.