During an interview for the home video release of Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman, Flickering Myth questioned actor Paul Walter Hauser about his campaign to play the Penguin/Oswald Cobblepot in the DC Universe (especially Matt Reeves’ upcoming The Batman, in which the character is rumored to appear); while he didn’t divulge any details about whether or not he’s heard of any interest from DC, he did make an impassioned case for the role.
Paul Walter Hauser said, “I think that I can do with the Penguin what Heath Ledger did with the Joker. If somebody gives me the opportunity, I’m far from the most famous choice, and I don’t know if I can put butts in seats, but I know I can give an unforgettable performance.”
An actor campaigning for a role in a comic book movie isn’t a rare occurrence in Hollywood, but Hauser has already released proof that he actually has the chops to pull off playing The Penguin. “[I]f you go to my Instagram page you’ll see both photographic and videographic evidence of me doing the character,” Hauser stated. Check out some samples of his particular take on the character below…
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Trying To Give Warner Brothers A Contact High #paulforpenguin #penguin #oswaldcobblepot #dccomics #comics #comicbook #comiccon #comics #comicbookartist #batman #superman #joker #batgirl #catwoman #casting #dceu #mattreeves #warnerbros #warnerbrothers #film #movies #gotham #villain ARTWORK BY: @bmchaps
Judging by the video, Hauser’s approach to the character does, in fact, seem to be similar to Ledger’s iconic Joker performance, in that he’s taking a typically cartoonish villain and injecting a healthy dose of humanistic darkness and idiosyncratic tics/movements.
Previously, in live-action projects, the Penguin has been played by Burgess Merideth (1966’s Batman), Danny DeVito (1992’s Batman Returns) and Robin Lord Taylor (Fox’s Gotham).
Hauser may not currently be a household name, but he’s a recognizable face nonetheless, who although has made a career out of skillfully playing dumb, incompetent characters (as showcased by his role as KKK member Ivanhoe in BlacKkKlansman), as he told Flickering Myth, he also is ready to face new challenges and demonstrate his comedic and dramatic range, an opportunity that his role as the Penguin would provide. Not to mention, Hauser’s I, Tonya co-star, Margot Robbie, has quite a bit of pull in the DC Extended Universe, between her role as Harley Quinn and going behind-the-scenes to produce Birds of Prey.
The BlacKkKlansman actor certainly has some competition for the role, as Frozen and Beauty and the Beast star Josh Gad has also expressed interest in donning the classic Penguin top hat and monocle.
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) September 13, 2018
Matt Reeves’ The Batman is expected to go into production sometime next year for a 2020 release date, although the project has been plagued by delays and could be pushed back even further.
Universal Home Entertainment will be releasing BlacKkKlansman on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow, November 6th, but those anxious to see the much-buzzed-about, critically acclaimed comedy/drama, or watch it again, can view it on digital platforms now.
From visionary director Spike Lee comes the provocative story based on Ron Stallworth’s real life as Colorado Springs’s first African-American police officer who went undercover to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan. Unbelievably, Detective Stallworth (John David Washington) and his partner Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver) penetrate the KKK at its highest levels to thwart its attempt to take over the city. Produced by the team behind the Academy-Award winning Get Out, Spike Lee uses his trademark take-no-prisoner style and humor to tell this story often missing from the history books.
Also, check out this exclusive clip from the special features for BlacKkKlansman, where the cast reveals their favorite scary movies (and talk about the scary social and political relevance of BlacKkKlansman today)…