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Colin Farrell in Fantastic Beasts

Having previously left his mark on the comic book movie world playing Bullseye in 2003’s Daredevil, Colin Farrell is returning to this genre nearly two decades later to play Oswald Cobblepot, a.k.a. The Penguin, in The Batman. With more than a year to go until this new take on the Caped Crusader’s mythology hits the big screen, there’s still a lot we don’t know about what’s in store, but Farrell is clearly pleased with the story that came from the mind of director Matt Reeves, who also co-wrote The Batman’s script with Mattson Tomlin.

Colin Farrell was already quite the Batman fan before joining the character’s latest theatrical adventure, but he recently noted how The Batman will feel much different than what’s come before, yet still incorporate familiar elements you want in a Batman story. In the actor’s words:

I have been watching the Batman films with my kids, but this script is something that feels incredibly original. It leans into it but it doesn’t borrow; it’s born of the mythology of that character, Bruce Wayne, Batman and Gotham. But it feels like a treatment and a version that I hadn’t seen before. ‘Matt Reeves has done an incredible job of keeping it familiar and at the same time unique and new. It’s really exciting to be a part of it.

Just like how Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy shook up Batman on film following the Tim Burton/Joel Schumacher years, Matt Reeves looks to be something special with the Robert Pattinson-led The Batman, something that Colin Farrell confirms with his comment to SFX Magazine (via Metro). Considering how long Batman’s been around, it’s refreshing to hear that there are still ways that this character can presented to audiences in new ways. Fingers crossed The Batman ends up truly being the unique offering Farrell is teasing.

Years back, Matt Reeves revealed how he was delivering a noir tale that would highlight Batman’s detective skills, something that’s rarely been explored in past movies. And while the images and reports that have come out so far indicate that The Batman will lean into this corner of the DC universe’s dark roots, earlier this month, cinematographer Greig Fraser noted that this project isn’t looking to be the most extreme Batman movie ever, so it’ll be interesting to see what kind of tonal balance this tale strikes.

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Colin Farrell will be the third actor to play Penguin in a live-action movie, following Burgess Meredith in 1966’s Batman and Danny DeVito in 1992’s Batman Returns. The character was also recently played by Robin Lord Taylor on the Fox series Gotham. No details have been revealed yet on how Farrell’s Penguin fits into The Batman, let alone any of his “tasty” scenes, although evidently he’ll go by the nickname “Oz.”

Let’s not forget Penguin won’t be the only villain in The Batman, with Zoe Kravitz and Paul Dano also taking part as Catwoman and Riddler, respectively. The movie’s other main cast members include Jeffrey Wright as James Gordon, Andy Serkis as Alfred Pennyworth, John Turturro as Carmine Falcone, Peter Sarsgaard as Gil Colson and Jayme Lawson as Bella Reál. Rather than depict a younger version of Ben Affleck’s Batman in the DC Extended Universe, Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne and his supporting cast are operating in a separate continuity; one which will also be explored in an HBO Max spinoff series centered on the Gotham City Police Department.

The Batman swoops into theaters on October 1, 2021. As you wait for more news on its progression, don’t forget to look through our DC movies guide to learn what else is coming up in this corner of superhero cinema.

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