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SYFY WIRE Renfield

'Renfield' star Nicholas Hoult reflects on losing out on 'The Batman' role to Robert Pattinson

Thankfully, Mr. Hoult still got to play a bat-related gentleman opposite Nic Cage's Dracula.

By Josh Weiss
Nicholas Hoult & Robert Pattinson header GETTY

Back in May of 2019 (which feels as though it were a lifetime away in our post-pandemic existence), Matt Reeves' blockbuster Batman project had narrowed its search for Bruce Wayne down to a pair of British actors: Tenet's Robert Pattinson and X-Men's Nicholas Hoult. As we now know, Reeves ended up choosing the former for The Batman, though Hoult doesn't harbor any ill will toward the writer/director.

"I think Matt Reeves’ ideas were fantastic and he made a brilliant movie," the Renfield star remarked during a recent interview with GQ España (via Variety). "And I also think that Rob [Pattinson] did an amazing job with the character, and I loved seeing him in it. So I don’t think I would have done as good a job as him ultimately. I don’t think I could have fit as well into the world that Matt created as Rob did."

RELATED: Could Christian Bale rise again as Batman? Dark Knight star explains the one way it could happen

He continued: "When they tell you for the first time that it’s not you, it’s painful, but then you have to accept it as normality. I think that’s probably a strength of mine as an actor as well. I can accept that they didn’t cast me pretty well and when I see the chosen actor doing a great job, and I enjoy it, and it’s good, I’m like, ‘Oh yeah, they made the right choice. They knew what they were doing.’ So it’s not like I’m sitting there like, ‘Oh, I’m not going to watch it now.’ It’s a good movie and Rob is brilliant in it."

Of course, Hoult ended up playing a very different type of bat-related gentleman in Renfield as the right-hand man to Count Dracula (Nicolas Cage). The actor's time on the vampire train will continue in Robert Eggers' upcoming reinterpretation of Nosferatu, whose cast also includes the talents of Lily-Rose Depp (Voyagers), Bill Skarsgård (Barbarian), Willem Dafoe (The Northman), Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kraven the Hunter), Emma Corrin (Lady Chatterley’s Lover), Simon McBurney (Carnival Row), and Ralph Ineson (The Green Knight).

Hoult confirmed that production is currently underway in Prague. "I am really enjoying the experience," he said. "I'm also learning a lot and I think Robert Eggers is probably one of the best directors out there right now, especially with period films. They are so captivating! For someone who has been a spectator, it is exciting to see from the inside, as an actor, the way he creates those universes."

Pattinson, meanwhile, is locked in to return as Gotham City's Caped Crusader in The Batman Part II (scheduled to hit theaters on Oct, 3, 2025). Reeves, who inked an overall production deal with Warner Bros. Discovery last summer, returns as director and co-writer for the sequel, which falls under the "Elseworlds" designation laid out by new DC Studios co-chiefs: James Gunn and Peter Safran.

Renfield is now playing in theaters everywhere. Click here to sink your fangs into some tickets.

Craving even more vampire shenanigans? Check out SYFY's Reginald the Vampire, which is set to return later this year for a second season. Or head on over to Peacock, where Vampire Academy is now in session. And that's not all! Universal Pictures will release a second Dracula-inspired movie — Last Voyage of the Demeter — into theaters this August.