Jonah Hill exits talks to play either The Penguin or The Riddler in Matt Reeves' upcoming DC film The Batman, reportedly over money issues. Hill's potential involvement in The Batman was first reported late last month, with some outlets reporting the actor was up for The Penguin role, others saying The Riddler, and still others saying he was in consideration for both parts. While Hill was once primarily known as a comedic performer, some acclaimed dramatic work in recent years has helped to change that view, so it's not hard to imagine him playing either villain.
Robert Pattinson has of course been cast as the Caped Crusader in The Batman, despite the choice causing a divided response from fans. Similarly to Hill, Pattinson was once primarily known for one thing, in his case playing swoon-worthy vampire Edward in the critically panned but fan adored Twilight films. Pattinson has also gone a long way in proving his dramatic chops since, suggesting those doubting his involvement may need to reconsider. Sadly, it appears that Pattinson and Hill aren't destined to meet each other on the streets of Gotham City.
Deadline was the first to report that Hill had dropped out of the mix for The Batman, and while their report doesn't specify the reasoning for his departure, a tweet from THR's Borys Kit sheds some light on the situation. As with most things in Hollywood, Hill not joining The Batman looks to come down to money, specifically him wanting more of it then Warner Bros. wanted to pay him.
That said, Hollywood deals can be like comic book deaths. Always a chance for a return. If the price is right. https://t.co/z3DmIXeO9n— Borys Kit (@Borys_Kit) October 16, 2019
In addition to Pattinson, The Batman has also cast Jeffrey Wright as Commissioner Jim Gordon and Zoe Kravitz as Catwoman. Hill would've made an interesting addition to that line-up, but alas, it seems like the chances of that happening now are slim. Of course, as Kit says, in Hollywood, deals aren't ever really dead for good. One need only look at the rollercoaster saga of Spider-Man leaving the MCU, which ultimately ended with Disney and Sony mending fences and making peace.
If Hill doesn't play The Penguin, one wonders if The Batman will finally give a look to Josh Gad, who's been actively lobbying for the part on social media for years now. As talented as Gad is though, perhaps Reeves and DC think he leans too far into comedy for the part, although it should be noted that Danny DeVito played up the comedic aspects of Penguin quite a bit to great effect in Tim Burton's Batman Returns. The Riddler role also remains open. Thankfully, with The Batman not set for release until summer 2021, it still has time to iron out the casting kinks.
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