Following the news that Ben Affleck would portray the Caped Crusader in Batman V Superman, the internet exploded with memes and gifs casting the actor's frequent collaborator and friend, Matt Damon, in the role of Robin. Of course, Damon was quick to dismiss the idea - while also throwing support behind Affleck as Batman; nevertheless, many fans have wondered, if Dawn of Justice is going to feature an aged and experience Dark Knight, wouldn't it make sense that Robin exists (somewhere) in this new DC cinematic universe?
However, in spite of a slew of casting and film announcements this week, Warner Bros. and director Zack Snyder have never made mention of the Boy Wonder (or a potential actor for the role). In a film that's already set to include a featured appearance by Wonder Woman and other future Justice Leaguers, including Batman's sometimes controversial sidekick might be overload. Still, rumors have persisted that Robin will appear in the film - with the most recent speculation suggesting that Hunger Games actress Jena Malone will portray Carrie Kelley, one of the female Robin characters - one that just happens to appear in The Dark Knight Returns (which is being cited as a major source for Batman V Superman's storyline).
Initially, we held-off on reporting the Malone speculation - since much of it was derived from circumstantial details, specifically two pieces of debatable evidence:
- Malone was spotted on the Batman V Superman set alongside Zack Snyder - suggesting that she could have a role in the film. That said, it wouldn't be the first (second, third, fourth, or last) time an actor has visited an active film set without actually being part of the production.
- Malone posted a selfie picture to Instagram - sporting bright red hair with the caption "Drastic times call for drastic measures."
Combining the two pieces of "evidence" many began to suspect, as mentioned, that Malone had been cast as Carrie Kelley - a teenager who is rescued by Batman on his first night back in the cape and cowl for The Dark Knight Returns. After his intervention, Kelley sets out to become the new Robin and is accepted by Batman after she saves him from near-death at the hands of the Mutant Leader.
Fast forward to today and we're hearing two separate reports that increase the possibility that Malone is in fact Robin - though, there's still some room for some debate.
THR has confirmed with multiple sources that Malone does, in fact, have a role in Batman V Superman. The trusted industry outlet reached out to insiders following a report from the Batman V Superman shoot in Michigan, where local affiliate WILX10's Kirk Montgomery spoke with a production informant (who asked to remain anonymous). While the local broadcast focused on details of an upcoming scene between Lex Luthor and Bruce Wayne, midway through the report Montgomery asserted that he has "learned that the character of Robin, as scripted now, is female" and then goes on to detail the previously explained Internet speculation regarding Malone.
You can watch the full video report below - courtesy of Bleeding Cool:
Unfortunately, Montgomery's phrasing makes it difficult to know the credibility of his claims. Did he simply assume that the speculation surrounding Malone means that Robin is female or did an actual source close to production outright tell him that we'll see Carrie Kelley (or Stephanie Brown) instead of Dick Grayson (or Tim Drake, among others)? Furthermore, if a source did confirm that Robin will be a female, is the source reliable? Montgomery never makes it clear how the insider in the video (which may or may not be the same one claiming Robin is female) is even related to the production - making it hard to determine how much they actually know about Batman V Superman's better kept secrets.
Coupled with the common-held belief that Batman V Superman will feature Bruce Wayne investigating whether or Kal-El is a threat, the Caped Crusader could bring along a trusted ally - in case he needs backup. Not to mention, Dawn of Justice is also set in Gotham City - meaning that any scenes with Kelley could take place on her home turf and be little more than DCU world-building (possibly for later inclusion in an upcoming Ben Affleck-led Batman film). After all, we're expecting to see a lot of characters that will be expanded on over the next six years as Warner Bros. launches their ambitious Justice League movie storyline and solo spin-offs.
At this point, it's hard to know for sure but, unlike those rumors of Scoot McNairy as the Flash, fans could have been right about Malone's casting.
Batman V Superman arrives in theaters on March 25th, 2016 with Justice League set to follow on November 17th, 2017.
Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick for any future updates on Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, as well as movie, TV, and gaming news.