DC Films fans are still waiting anxiously to learn some official details about Matt Reeves' The Batman, but today all we have is yet another rumor. According to Variety's Justin Kroll, the current plan is for The Batman to feature The Penguin as its main villain!
Take this with a grain of salt as things are constantly changing in the DCEU but I'm hearing the Penguin is possibly the choice to play the main villain in THE BATMAN. Sources add even if Reeves decide to go another route the studio could then make him the main villain in BOP— Justin Kroll (@krolljvar) May 30, 2018
The tweet comes with caveat that things are definitely changing with DC Films plans for upcoming movies, so this is strictly a rumor in the purest sense. Kroll also adds that if Penguin doesn't end up in The Batman, the villain could be moved to the upcoming Birds of Prey movie.
The Penguin being the main bad of a Batman movie will give certain fans immediate flashbacks to Danny DeVito's role as the villain in Batman Returns. However, if The Batman is going to be, in part, establishing a new cinematic world for the Batman movie franchise, Penguin (as a major crimeboss at the nexus of Gotham's underworld) would be a smart choice of character. He's easily the type of Batman villain that could serve as a bridge to so many other types of rouges - from the more believable psychos and killers like Victor Zsaz, to more fantastical foes like Scarecrow or Mr. Freeze. Given the angle the DC Films have taken with Jared Leto's Joker, Penguin could also serve as either a rival crimeboss or gangland ally to Joker.
To be honest, however, it may be more interesting to see Penguin featured in the Birds of Prey movie, which is being directed by Cathy Yan, and will reportedly bring back Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn, and introduce Batgirl to the DC Films Universe. Penguin serving as that movie's villain would bring an obvious amount of pun-related joy, but would also be a nice wrinkle between Harley Quinn (used to running in underworld circles with the likes of Penguin), and Batgirl (constantly trying to bring down Penguin's empire. As the movie will likely revolve around the two DC ladies' odd-pair relationship, having Batgirl trying to bring down Penguin while Harley tries to usurp his business, would be fun in a 48 Hours kind of way.
With Gotham making Penguin a mainstream DC villain, the time is right for the character to get a big screen debut again. The only question left is: will Frozen star Josh Gad finally get to play him?
The DC Extended Universe continues with Aquaman on December 21, Shazam on April 5, 2019, Wonder Woman 2 on November 1, 2019, Cyborg in 2020, and Green Lantern Corps in 2020.