The past couple of days has been massive for the DCEU. Not only has Matt Reeves defied breakdown rumors to sign on the dotted line to direct The Batman, but Ben Affleck has emphatically endorsed his new creative partner, signaling Warner Bros' new standalone move for the Caped Crusader is well on the way to reality.
An even bigger surprise, however, came from another side of Bruce Wayne's world. Following the success of The LEGO Batman Movie, Chris McKay is set to direct a film based around former-Robin Dick Grayson, Nightwing. Since the announcement, there's been all manner of young actors nominated to play the part, with Jared Padalecki even saying he'd love the call.
In the wake of the speculation, artist Boyz Alsofake has imagined what Nightwing might look like if two-time Oscar nominee Dev Patel were to take on the role.
Patel first came to people's attention with British drama Skins as Anwar and rose to international notoriety playing the lead in Danny Boyle's Academy Awards smash Slumdog Millionaire. He's back on the Oscar trail currently with Lion, the story of an adopted Indian child brought up in Australia seeking out his estranged family through his memories and Google Earth. Patel is nominated for playing the grown-up Saroo, while the film itself is nominated for six other awards, including Best Picture. Although Patel isn't expected to win on Sunday night (he's in the competitive Best Supporting Actor category which is a dead cert for Moonlight's Mahershala Ali), he's one of the most praised parts of Lion.
Patel previously flirted with blockbuster cinema with The Last Airbender as Prince Zuko. M. Night Shyamalan's adaptation of the Nickelodeon cartoon was widely panned, not least because of its racial insensitivity in regards to the Zuko's Fire Nation. Patel has since talked about how the experience had a great influence on his career outlook and led to him taking roles in smaller films. For him to take on Nightwing would see him returning to the big budget fray, although it's fair to say Batman offers a different opportunity. He's definitely shown the range required to play such a role and has the movie star charisma to match, while the artwork shows he'd definitely fit.
Patel is just one of many names fans have raised as a potential actor to play Grayson since the project was announced - other popular choices include Ryan Guzman, Rami Malek and Richard Madden. There's a lot of excitement about the Nightwing movie and what it could mean for the wider DCEU, so be sure to stay tuned for more updates.
Source: Boyz Alsofake
- Justice League (2017) release date: Nov 17, 2017
- Wonder Woman (2017) release date: Jun 02, 2017
- The Batman (2021) release date: Jun 25, 2021