It looks like Penguin from The Batman could be getting an origin story of his own, as HBO Max is in the process of developing a TV series about the character.
The potential show would be a spin-off of the upcoming film The Batman, which is scheduled to be in theatres in 2022 — starring Colin Farrell in the role once inhabited by Danny DeVito. Matt Reeves and Dylan Clark, who are directing and producing the film, will be executive producers on the project.
In The Batman, Farrell plays the Penguin, a crime lord whose given name is Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot. It has been reported that the actor has been approached to reprise the role in the series, but nothing has been confirmed as yet.
The so-far unnamed series — which has been described as “Scarface-like” — would follow Penguin/Cobblepot’s rise through the Gotham City underworld.
One of the most popular villains in the Batman franchise, the character has previously been played by Danny DeVito in Batman Returns and Robin Lord Taylor in Gotham.
Meanwhile, The Batman — which stars Robert Pattinson as the Dark Knight — will finally be released after multiple pandemic-induced delays in March 2022. Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Paul Dano as The Riddler, and Jeffrey Wright as Commissioner Gordon also star.
If the Penguin spinoff goes ahead, it will mark the second spinoff series from The Batman at HBO Max as the streamer has already ordered a drama set within the Gotham Police Department. Other DC series in development include a Suicide Squad spinoff, Peacemaker, a Green Lantern series and a Justice League Dark series from legendary producer and filmmaker J.J. Abrams.
News of the potential spinoff was met with some scepticism from fans of Batman prequel series Gotham, who argued that we’ve essentially already seen a Penguin origin story and therefore don’t require another.
“The Penguin was the worst Batman villain until one of the best things Gotham did was make Penguin a centrepiece, and developed him perfectly,” one Twitter user wrote. “Please don’t regress. Just cancel this while you’re ahead and make the Batman origin story we’ve all been waiting for.”
The Penguin was the worst Batman villain until one of the best things Gotham did was make Penguin a centerpiece, and developed him perfectly. Please don't regress. Just cancel this while you're ahead and make the Batman origin story we've all been waiting for. https://t.co/Q0ZYmqWxFd
— David Rosenblatt (@SirSquinty) September 13, 2021