The Penguin: Max Exec Says The Batman Spinoff Will Help Fight Superhero Fatigue

Casey Bloys praises the "different style" of the DC TV series.

After The Batman became a smash success for Warner Bros. last year, the studio is not slowing down on that side of the DC Universe. A television spinoff, The Penguin, is currently in the works for Max, promising a unique crime drama around Oswald Cobblepot / The Penguin (Colin Farrell). While production on The Penguin has been stalled amid the recent Hollywood strikes, it sounds like HBO and Max executive Casey Bloys has a lot of praise for the show. During a 2024 programming showcase in New York, Bloys argued that The Penguin and the studio's various DC-inspired television shows have a clear sense of style, something that might not be the case in the stories of other superhero competitors.

"I don't know that it's necessarily tentpole fatigue as much as it is a sameness of storytelling," Bloys explained. "I think the key, even within DC, is trying to tell different stories in different styles, to not try to do the same show over and over and over again. I would say Peacemaker is a very different show tonally than The Penguin. So, there's not a uniformity to the storytelling and I think that helps. Unfortunately, Marvel, as good as their shows are, there's probably been a lot of them. That's one of the advantages we have at Warner Bros. is it's not just one set of stories. There's a lot of stories you can go to."

What Is The Penguin About?

While plot details surrounding The Penguin are currently under wraps, it is expected to take place in the aftermath of the events of The Batman.

"We are thrilled to bring audiences a new version of this iconic DC character that they have never seen before," Sarah Aubrey, Head of Original Content, HBO Max, said in a statement when the show was announced. "It is incredible to be working with Matt, Dylan and Lauren on continuing this story and to see Colin take his already exceptional performance in 'The Batman' to the next level."

"Colin exploded off the screen as the Penguin in 'The Batman,' and having the chance to thoroughly explore the inner life of that character on HBO Max is an absolute thrill," The Batman director Matt Reeves echoed. "Dylan and I are so excited to work with Lauren in continuing Oz's story as he grabs violently for power in Gotham."

"I have long been a fan of the world of 'The Batman,' and Matt's film is such a powerful and bold entry into the canon. I am excited and humbled to continue telling stories in the grimy world of Gotham City – and what better excuse to channel my inner villain than to tell the story of Oswald Cobblepot? I am thrilled to work with Colin, Matt, Dylan, 6th & Idaho, Warners, and HBO Max as we work to bring this story to the screen," said showrunner Lauren LeFranc.

Who Is the Cast of The Penguin?

The cast of The Penguin includes Colin Farrell as Oswald Cobblepot / The Penguin and Cristin Milioti as Sofia Falcone, Clancy Brown as Salvatore Maroni, as well as Rhenzy Feliz, Michael Kelly, Shohreh Aghdashloo, and Deirdre O'Connell.

"The only thing I had an idea was that I wasn't nearly getting to explore the character as much as I wanted to," Farrell explained in a recent interview with Variety. "Because there was all this extraordinary work done by [makeup artists] Mike Marino and Mike Fontaine and his team, and I just thought it was the tip of the iceberg, pardon the pun, that we were getting to do the six or seven scenes that we did in the film. I was grateful for them, but I wanted more."

Are you excited for The Batman's The Penguin spinoff? What do you think of these new comments? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

The Penguin is set to debut exclusively on Max at a later date.