Fresh from his mammoth, 12-hour live reading of The Hobbit, actor Andy Serkis has been chatting about his role as loyal butler Alfred Pennyworth in The Batman.
The DC comic book reboot is being helmed by Matt Reeves, responsible for two of the critically acclaimed Planet of the Apes remakes. It stars The Lighthouse's Robert Pattinson as Bruce Wayne, in a movie that purports to take the character back to his origins as a detective of sorts.
Reeves told Nerdist back in April: "I wanted to do not an origin tale, but a tale that would still acknowledge his origins, in that it formed who he is. Like this guy, he’s majorly struggling, and this is how he’s trying to rise above that struggle."
Amidst an all-star cast that includes Zoe Kravitz as Catwoman, Colin Farrell as The Penguin and Paul Dano as The Riddler, Serkis' casting is particularly intriguing. He's famous for motion-capture roles in the likes of Lord of the Rings and the aforementioned Apes movies, but this is in the live-action realm. It's suited Serkis well in the past, particularly with his critically acclaimed performance as Ian Dury in biopic Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll.
Speaking to LadBible, Serkis echoed Farell's recent comments that the movie would be "darker", saying: "I would say that's not far from the truth."
Serkis also said that the Bruce/Alfred relationship would be at the heart of the story. "It’s very much about the emotional connection… that’s really at the centre of it. And it is a really exquisite script that Matt has written."
The actor follows in the footsteps of previous Alfred performers Michael Gough, Michael Caine and Jeremy Irons. Of the three, Serkis confesses to being a fan of Caine's portrayal, telling Cinemablend: "He [Caine] was fantastic. His Alfred was legendary, I couldn't even begin to go there, really. You find it for yourself. It's like playing these iconic roles in Shakespeare, you go back, you revisit them and you have to make it your own, and see what it is about the character that connects with you and your personal venn diagram"
The Batman is scheduled for release on 1st October 2021. How do you think Andy Serkis' portrayal of Alfred will stack up next to his predecessors? Let us know @Cineworld.