September 8, 2008

Batman to Take on Depp and Hoffman?

MTV's Splashpage blog is reporting that Johnny Depp is in the next Bat-flick as The Riddler and Philip Seymour Hoffman will be taking on The Penguin. Their source? None other than Alfred himself, Michael Caine. Sounds like huge news, no?

I have to admit to being a little wary. Christopher Nolan plays everything pretty close to the vest, he won't say anything until he is ready for the world to know. Considering that he isn't signed for the third film yet, and with The Dark Knight still in theaters, I think it may be a little too soon to start announcing casting decisions.

Of course, rumors have been flying around since the opening of The Dark Knight, and Depps and Hoffman's names have been discussed in relation to these characters being the new villains. Take this along with the rumor that Nolan wanted Cher to be Catwoman and Angelina Jolie campaigning for the role, you can begin to get the idea of how big the next film could be and how a veritable ton of big names will want to get in on the action.

Here is the Caine quote that seems to be getting the most attention so far as "confirming" this casting news: “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!’”

Now, that does not strike me as confirmation, more like an executive offering up a way to top Heath Ledger's charismatic performance. I do not see that and immediately think this is the casting. I am actually in the camp that thinks the major characters added to the next film will be one female and one male, with the most popular pairings being Riddler/Catwoman and Penguin/Talia al' Ghul. To me, this makes a bit more sense following the events of The Dark Knight.

Take this with a grain of salt as it may be some time before we get the truth. Although, I have a feeling that Chris Nolan is well along the way to knowing what he wants to do in the next film, after all, he had a script for The Dark Knight before anyone knew he was making it.


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