We posted these rumors a short while back (along with a Jolie Catwoman one), but now some news of this casting has come from the lips of Michael Caine in speaking with MTV:
“They’ve already got them in mind,” said Caine, when asked who he’d like to see take up arms against the Caped Crusader. “It’s Johnny Depp as The Riddler. And The Penguin is Philip Seymour Hoffman. I read it in the paper.”
So Caine is like the rest of us, reading gossip in the tabloids, right? Except for one thing…according to the actor, he confirmed the news through the studio itself.
“When Christopher [Nolan] said we were going to do ‘The Dark Knight’ next, I didn’t what that meant in Batman terms,” related Caine, who plays Bruce Wayne’s loyal butler, Alfred Pennyworth. “I said, ‘What’s the story?’ and he said The Joker. I said, ‘Oh, s–t! How are you going to top Jack [Nicholson]?’ He said, ‘Well, I’ve cast Heath Ledger. And I went ‘Ha! I couldn’t top Jack, but if anyone could, maybe Heath could.’ And he did.
“I was with [a Warner Bros.] executive and I said, ‘Are we going to make another one?’ They said yeah. I said, ‘How the hell are we going to top Heath? And he says ‘I’ll tell you how you top Heath — Johnny Depp as The Riddler and Philip Seymour Hoffman as The Penguin.’ I said, ‘S–t, they’ve done it again!’” [Laughs]
No doubt there will be some official clarification of this announcement in the coming days, however what is interesting is the clear intention for The Penguin and The Riddler to star in the third movie, whether Depp or Hoffman sign on is another matter — and one that I still don’t see being confirmed for a long while yet.
How do you feel about The Riddler and Penguin potentially appearing in Batman 3?
Christopher Nolan has stated an interest in the extensive and elaborate 70 year history of Batman — particularly the interesting parts that have not yet been in the movies or the sixties television show.
Meanwhile, The Riddler, The Penguin and Catwoman are all villains that have been bandied about as potentials for the next movie; I personally doubt whether we will see these characters pop up in the next feature. Instead I think we will see Nolan opt for a villain that impacts more on Batman/Bruce Wayne’s profile. As seen so devastatingly with The Joker, when the villain really messes with the Hero in every which way, the stories become much more intertwined, complex and exciting.
So — on that note:
Which villain(s) do you want to see in Batman 3?
The less obvious, the better — feel free to include your casting wishlists.
Now that The Dark Knight has been out for over three weekends, I will begin to splatter more spoiler-ish information into posts as we begin to discuss “Batman 3″, or whatever name we can derive for the next film.
Christopher Nolan hasn’t yet signed on for a third Batman movie, and his screenwriter John Nolan is still on the set of Terminator Salvation. Until the key players sign-on, including David Goyer, ANY casting rumors that you see are most likely wishlists or articles looking to capitalize on The Dark Knight’s popularity.
Taking this point into consideration, I now present you the three main rumblings that are spreading across the internet:
Angelina Jolia as Catwoman
This rumor seems to have originated from an NY Daily News article which reckons that Angelina Jolie should play Catwoman in the next Batman incarnation — or so former Catwoman and ‘Batman icon’ Julie Newmar thinks.
“Angelina would own the part. My industry friends tell me [she] has made inquiries about the role. I can understand how it would piqué her interest. Catwoman is Batman’s one true love. She’s tremendously popular with women because she’s both a heroine and a villainess. When you look at the staggering box office of this current film, which actress wouldn’t want to jump in?”
Although this goes against Nolan and Goyer’s inclination NOT to bring back the humanoid feline.
Johnny Depp as The Riddler
Meanwhile, the suprious and terrible National Enquirer, via Jake and Hollywood.com are tipping Johnny Depp to play The Riddler. That’s the extent of the news feature.
“(Producers) are convinced that the role of the Riddler is perfect for Depp. Johnny’s a pro. He’ll be able to take direction from director Chris Nolan and still make the character his own.”
(SPOILER: I’ve also read rumors that Depp would be a good substitute for The Joker should they wish to bring him back in some capacity.)
Philip Seymour Hoffman as The Penguin
The tabloid also thinks:
“And what better Penguin is there than Philip Seymour Hoffman.”
I can guarantee that come 12 months, none of these predictions will be close. Fan reactions to these rumors are also entirely inconsequential — we all remember how masses reacted when Heath Ledger was cast as The Joker.