‘The Batman’ Spinoff Series About Penguin in Development at HBO Max

HBO Max’s slate of superpowered television will expand soon via a TV spinoff of the upcoming “The Batman” film that will focus on the Penguin.

Variety and Deadline reported on Monday afternoon that a Penguin-focused television series was in the works. Colin Farrell, who will portray the iconic supervillain in “The Batman,” has been approached to star in the spinoff. No deals have been inked, according to the publications. Deadline stated that the series was “‘Scarface’-like”; Variety reported that the show would delve into the Penguin’s rise to power in Gotham’s criminal underworld.

An HBO Max representative declined to comment.

Per Variety, “The Batman” director Matt Reeves and producer Dylan Clark will executive-produce the upcoming project, which is in early development and does not have an official title. Warner Bros. Television is set to produce. “The Batman” is scheduled to release in theaters on March 4, 2022.

The reported Penguin series will further bulk up HBO Max’s roster of DC Comics-based titles. A John Cena-led series, titled “Peacemaker” and based on Cena’s character from James Gunn’s “The Suicide Squad,” is set to premiere on HBO Max in January 2022. A television show based on the Green Lantern is also in the works, as is a project titled “Justice League Dark,” though details about those titles are scarce. The animated “Harley Quinn” series also premiered its third season on HBO Max earlier in 2021.

As for Farrell, who previously starred in television shows such as “True Detective” and “The North Water,” the actor discussed portraying the Penguin in “The Batman” on a podcast in July, noting that he was relieved to be able to wear a fat suit for the role instead of gaining weight to resemble the corpulent villain.

“Mike Marino is a genius,” Farrell said of the makeup artist working on the film. “He’s an absolute and veritable genius. And that word gets thrown out a lot, but he is a drawing, sculpting, shaping genius. And he created this visage for the Penguin. I mean he and Matt talked about what physically the character stature would be, and I had been quite big for ‘The North Water’ and I didn’t want to naturally go big again cause I had a few little health things as a result of ‘The North Water’ and I was just like, f-ck, this acting thing ain’t this important. I know the top actors that go up and down, and God bless them, I wish them good health. But for me, I think ‘The North Water’ is the last time I’ll go up that much. So, we decided on a fat suit.”

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