Fans finally got The Batman trailer courtesy of grimly beautiful footage released during last weekend's DC FanDome event. Not only did it reveal the first footage from the movie, but the official description for the trailer lists the ensemble cast, revealing that Dunkirk's Barry Keoghan has been quietly cast as GCPD Officer Stanley Merkel. '
Making his first appearance in the pages of DC comics in 1987's Batman #405, Stanley Merkel was Jim Gordon's original GCPD partner when he first started out his career in Gotham City. The character appeared sporadically ever since, having several run-ins with Batman, before dying at the hands of the Hangman.
Alongside his endearing performance in Christopher Nolan's World War II drama Dunkirk, Barry Keoghan has proven his ability to play sinisterly creepy individuals in the likes of The Killing of a Sacred Deer and The Shadow of Violence. The actor has also appeared in the likes of HBO's Chernobyl, Trespass Against Us, and '71. Noting the obvious age difference between Keoghan and Jim Gordon actor Jeffery Wright, it is possible that he will appear in a flashback sequence detailing the early years of the future Gotham commissioner and Batman ally.
The Batman is a noir-driven story that picks up with Bruce Wayne around two years into his crime-fighting career. A young Bruce Wayne has become disheartened by the lack of impact he is having on crime in Gotham, when suddenly a series of murders occur at the hands of The Riddler. Lead down a path that will reveal dark secrets about his parents, Bruce is forced to confront the corruption going on in the shadows of his city, all while trying to catch The Riddler before he kills again.
Robert Pattinson is suiting up as the Caped Crusader, with director Matt Reeves recently explaining that it was not just Pattinson's acting talent that drew him to the actor, but their shared passion for the Batman mythology as well. "[Robert has] been working on his craft in this really incredible way, and he also happens to be a tremendous, passionate sort of fan of Batman that way that I am and so... it was an incredible thing to be able to connect with him and to share the excitement about the character and to work with him," Reeves said. "I mean, you know, he looks like Batman but more than anything, he has the soul of someone I think can play a Batman like you'd never seen before."
The rest of cast includes the likes of Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Paul Dano as Riddler, Colin Farrell as Penguin, Andy Serkis as Alfred Pennyworth, John Turturro as Carmine Falcone, Peter Sarsgaard as Gil Colson and Jeffery Wright as Commissioner Gordon. The Batman is currently scheduled to be released on October 1, 2021, with filming due to commence in the UK as soon as next month following a pause in production.
The Batman will not be the only foray into the comic book movie genre for Keoghan, with the actor due to play Druid in the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe blockbuster The Eternals. Picking up following the events of Avengers: Endgame, The Eternals centres on an immortal alien race who have secretly lived on Earth for over 7000 years, who must reunite to protect humanity from their evil counterparts, the Deviants. The Eternals is scheduled to hit theaters on February 12, 2021.
Keoghan's involvement in The Batman was revealed via the official description for the trailer on Warner Bros. Pictures official YouTube channel, and was later confirmed in a press release at the official DC FanDome website.