A new piece of fan art has attempted to solve the riddle of how Paul Dano will look as Edward Nygma (aka The Riddler) in the Matt Reeves' upcoming The Batman. Until recently, Jonah Hill was in talks for a villainous role - rumored to be either The Riddler or Penguin. Ultimately, however, negotiations between Hill and Warner Bros. broke down. Soon after, Dano was officially announced as stepping into the enigmatic shoes of Batman's iconic foe. The acclaimed actor joins an already stacked cast, that also recently added Zoë Kravitz as Selina Kyle (aka Catwoman) and is expected to see Jeffrey Wright sign on to play Commissioner Jim Gordon.
The Caped Crusader himself was most recently played on the big screen by Ben Affleck. After debuting as the iconic character in Batman v Superman, Affleck later reprised the role in a Suicide Squad cameo and more prominently in Justice League. Following the underwhelming reception of the latter, Affleck stepped away from the role. Opting to return to a younger iteration of the character, Warner Bros. screen-tested multiple actors before ultimately confirming Robert Pattinson's casting earlier this year. Although it looks more and more like The Batman can't be a part of the DCEU canon, the film has remained increasingly anticipated by fans.
Following the official announcement, the acclaimed digital artist, BossLogic, has taken it upon himself to whet fan's appetite further. Posting on Instagram, his latest work offers a glimpse at how Dano may look in the role. Pitting him opposite a glimpse of Pattinson in the cowl, the results are surprisingly subdued and yet perfectly in keeping with what little is known of the film. Dano's version, in this representation, is infinitely less overt and garish than the one played by Jim Carrey in 1995's Batman Forever. Instead, it offers a more real-world, down-to-Earth take, with The Riddler persona demonstrated subtly in the question mark on his tie-clip and the shimmer of green in his glasses. The full image can be seen below.
The interpretation is not wholly dissimilar from Corey Michael Smith's version on Gotham. As such, it would no doubt make for an interesting foil for The Batman's reportedly still fledgling vigilante. And an assuming yet menacing version of the character that Dano could do wonders with. The actor first came to prominence in Little Miss Sunshine, before receiving wider acclaim in dual roles opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in There Will Be Blood. Dano has since carved out a truly eclectic career - with performances in such drastically alternating fare as literary period pieces like War & Peace and the more outlandish concepts seen in Swiss Army Man. As a result, it's easy to see why the casting announcement has been met with widespread praise.
Details regarding the film are being kept firmly, and understandably, under wraps. Despite that, it's been heavily rumored to be an adaptation of The Long Halloween storyline. As such, though Pattinson's Batman won't cross paths with Joaquin Phoenix's Joker, he will have a whole cadre to square off against - with even a Two-Face casting announcement expected in the near future. Given that, it remains to be seen just how much screen time the actor will get and how prominently the character will feature in the story. Whatever the case, the above image will no doubt only add to the anticipation and hype for The Batman's eventual release.
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