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Warner Bros. really seems to be going all in on The Batman universe before the movie has even swooped into theaters. Speaking with The Toronto Sun, director and co-writer Matt Reeves pretty much confirmed another HBO Max spinoff series is in development alongside the projects centered around the Gotham City Police Department and Colin Farrell's Penguin.
"This is the beginning of this world and there are all these places we can go with these characters," the filmmaker explained. "And with this cast that came and brought such vivid life [to it]. We're doing this Penguin ... Colin Farrell is like you've never [seen] in this movie. He's incredible and he actually is sort of a scene-stealer because he's just so funny, he's just so great. Along the way, we thought, 'Oh, well maybe we can do this as a series.' And when I talked to HBO Max, I showed them Colin in the movie and I talked to them about what this could be. And they were like, 'Let's do that.' So we're doing that and we're doing another series that connects to Arkham."
Of course, he could've been referring to the Gotham PD show, which might end up depicting how the city's police force was able to throw a slew of dangerous criminals into padded cells at the famous mental asylum over the years. Whether Arkham is a subset of that or fully spun out into its own animal, the decision to dive deeper into the location makes a lot of sense. We won't be spoiling anything, but let's just say the institution does play a rather significant role in building out the blossoming lore of Reeves' continuity.
Nevertheless, the crime-busting tales of Gotham's Finest are still a ways off after original showrunner, Terence Winter (Boardwalk Empire, Vinyl), bowed out in November 2020 over creative differences (Joe Barton ended up taking his place several months later).
Per a recent article from Variety, the Penguin-focused spinoff is much closer to kicking off production. Oswald "Oz" Cobblepot's solo outing was apparently born out of an early idea for the second movie, which proposed tracking the rise of Oz from Carmine Falcone's underling to a full-on criminal kingpin.
In terms of a direct theatrical sequel, Reeves admitted that he and WB "are talking and thinking about the next movie, but to be honest with you, at the moment, the most important thing is that after five years — I started this in 2017 — this movie's finally coming out. I really want the audience to connect to it and I really believe they will because I think Rob [Pattinson] is an incredible Batman."
Producer Dylan Clark also discussed the potential for a sequel with ComicBook.com, stating that if a follow-up receives the coveted studio green-light, fans will have to wait "less than five years" before it opens in theaters.
The Batman arrives on the big screen tomorrow — Friday, March 4.