Josh Gad Confirms He Will Not Play Penguin in The Batman

Josh Gad, who has flirted with the role of the Penguin in the Matt Reeves-directed The Batman for more than two years, claims he won’t be playing the Gotham mobster in the upcoming DC Comics film. After first adding Zoe Kravitz as the Catwoman to Robert Pattinson’s Dark Knight detective, Warner Bros. is in talks with Paul Dano for clue-dropping villain the Riddler. The studio is still on the hunt for an actor to play Penguin, a.k.a. Oswald Cobblepot, with only Seth Rogen named as an actor the studio reportedly expressed an interest in. Jonah Hill — who was circling one of two villain roles in The Batman — recently dropped out of talks.

“Love you all. But, once again, for those in the back... I 👏 AM 👏 NOT 👏 GOING 👏 TO 👏 PLAY 👏 THE 🐧,” Gad tweeted Thursday. Gad earlier admitted in June his frequent teasing has resulted in an overwhelming and frequent amount of fan speculation surrounding his potential involvement with The Batman.

“Ok, seeing as I keep getting this question... as much as I have LOVED torturing you all with teasing you about the Penguin, I feel like it’s time to tell you... I’m NOT actually playing this character,” the Frozen star tweeted. “But I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the fan art and the love. 😂😘”

In 2017, when asked about his apparent campaign for the role, Gad said he was “just having some fun.”

“Really, I promise! There’s nothing to... there’s no there there,” Gad told MTV News. “The internet just goes wild. I’m just having some fun putting things out there.” Asked if the villain role in a superhero movie is something he’d turn down, Gad said, “No, never. I would absolutely be open to playing the Penguin in the Batman movie.”

More recently, catching up with MTV at D23 Expo in August, Gad admitted he was “trolling” with his two-year casting campaign.

“I felt like I was just taking it to a point that it just went too far. I’ve had so much fun with it, but it was just something where I was like, ‘I should really put this to bed,’” Gad said. “Everyday, I started getting asked questions about it. And I’m like, ‘As far as I know, I am not the Penguin. I need to put this all to bed then.’”

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Gad added he never met with Warner Bros. about the role. “Honest to God,” he said, “I’ve just been having fun. I just wanted to get into the trolling of it all. It was fun.”

Warner Bros. opens The Batman June 25, 2021.