The Batman: Colin Farrell On Penguin Make Up, Tease of Classic Monocle

Audiences who are not embedded in the movie or geek news discourse are going to walk into The Batman next weekend and be shocked when their friend (the friend is embedded in such discourse) tells them that The Penguin was played by Colin Farrell. The actor is covered in such heavy make up and prosthetics that he is unrecognizable, yet he will be offering every bit of a normal performance as the face cover does not prevent any bit of movement or emotion from coming through. In fact, if you ask Colin Farrell (which we did!), the prosthetic only enhances his and the viewers' understanding of the DC Comics villain.

"I mean, it's human, you know, as human beings we make very knee jerk kind of judgment calls on people based on their appearance right?" Farrell said. "We're told, we're taught to do that from a very young age. Sometimes it's a defense mechanism, and it's a survival mechanism. Other times, it's just a byproduct of kind of a social criticism that can be cancerous I think." As a result, Farrell expects everybody to form an immediate judgment of his Oswald Cobblepott who comes with scars tattooed on his face.

"I had thoughts and ideas based on what Matt [Reeves] wrote in the script, and what I read," Farrell explained. "But I was struggling to think what I could do with it, and how I could inhabit it. And then I saw Mike Marino's design for the character and there was so much going on in the face. And it so realistic, just from looking at the design, and then I tried it on. But there was the scarring, the pock-marked face. There was a sadness, there was a kind of an empathy that I felt when I looked at it. And Os is somebody who, you know, can be terrifying. He has a propensity for violence. But, like the majority of human beings on the planet, inside him there is a brokenness that Matt wanted to explore. And I think that Mike represented so much. So when I saw the actual makeup for the first time the penny started to drop on what drove this man, what his life might have been like before, when he was a young man, when he was a teenager, 20s, working his way up the criminal cabal. And it did so much of the work for me, man, it really did."

Marino is no stranger to impressive make up and prosthetic designs. He previously worked on such titles as Joker, The Irishman, I Am Legend, Black Swan, and more. Now, his impressive work is telling its own story in the new Gotham City universe. When it comes to whether or not the classic monocle DC Comics fans have known the Penguin to wear, Farrell may have dabbled with the idea. "I'm not sure, I dunno, I'm not sure," he said with a smirk when asked if he would ever sport it. "I might have tried it on a couple of times. And I know we went back and forth a bit. I'm not sure."

As the story goes, Penguin will be a major player in The Batman but there is "six or eight hours" more story to tell which is why he will be getting his own spinoff series on HBO Max which follows this cinematic debut's story. "It's just that it's kind of an amazing character to explore, his kind of awkwardness, and his strength, and his villainy, yes, his propensity for violence," Farrell said. "But there's also a heartbroken man inside there you know, which just makes it really tasty. I would love to do it. I won't believe it until I'm in the suit, and in Mike Marino's makeup, and I hear action, then I'll believe and see."

Are you excited to see The Batman? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Instagram! The Batman hits theaters on March 4!