It was recently announced that Ben McKenzie will play Detective Jim Gordon in Fox’s Gotham television show. Now, the latest casting report reveals who will play the younger versions of Oswald Cobblepot/The Penguin and Alfred Pennyworth, as well as two female characters. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Robin Lord Taylor (The Walking Dead) is set to play Cobblepot, who is “described as having the brains of a chess grandmaster and the morals of a jackal, [and] is a low-level psychopath for gangster Fish Mooney who hides his sadistic lust for power behind an exquisitely polite demeanor.” Taylor is the second actor to play Penguin in live action, after Burgess Meredith in the 1960s Batman series and Danny DeVito in 1992’s Batman Returns.
Next up, Sean Pertwee (Camelot) has been cast as Alfred Pennyworth, Bruce Wayne’s loyal butler. In Gotham, Pennyworth is “a tough-as-nails ex-Marine from East London who has loyally served Thomas and Martha Wayne for years. Now, in the wake of their tragic deaths, he is fiercely protective of their young son, Bruce.” Alfred has been portrayed in every live action incarnation of Batman. Most famously, he was played by Alan Napier in the 1960s Batman, Michael Gough in the Tim Burton and Joel Schumacher films, and Michael Caine in The Dark Knight Trilogy. It was recently announced that Jeremy Irons will play Alfred in 2016’s Batman vs. Superman.
Finally, the roles of Barbara Kean and Captain Essen have been filled. The former, to be played by Erin Richards (Being Human), is “a sophisticated ER doctor who is engaged to marry Gordon. Joyful but with an edge of vulnerability, she stands by her future husband — which can be difficult in a world as corrupt as Gotham.” The latter – presumably Sarah Essen, who Gordon had an affair with and later married in the comics – is described as “rookie Gordon’s boss at the Gotham City Police Department’s homicide unit, who balances the two worlds of police and politics with a Machiavellian skill that is as much corporate litigator as cop.” She will be portrayed by Zabryna Guevara (Burn Notice).
Still to be cast is a young Bruce Wayne, who will become Batman by the end of the series. Iconic villains such as Joker, Riddler, and Catwoman are also set to appear in origin stories. Production on Gotham is expected to begin this spring, and will likely premiere on Fox next fall.
L-R: Erin Richards (Barbara Kean), Sean Pertwee (Alfred), Zabryna Guevara (Capt. Essen), Robin Lord Taylor (Penguin)
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