The Batman was a welcome reset for DC’s flagship superhero. After Ben Affleck’s turn never truly established itself in Zack Snyder’s divisive spectacles, this younger refresh from director Matt Reeves was a rejuvenating exercise in course correction.
With a stronger emphasis on Batman’s detective work, this outing was also elevated by its cast, from Robert Pattinson as the gruff caped crusader, Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, to Colin Farrell’s standout turn as Oswald Cobblepot aka The Penguin. A sequel was inevitable, but what do we know about the next instalment in this revamped Batman saga?
Is a sequel to The Batman officially in the works?
The Bat is back
A sequel to The Batman was officially confirmed during a CinemaCon presentation from Warner Bros. on April 26, 2022. Matt Reeves was also announced to be returning to write and direct the sequel.
Speaking at the event (via Deadline), Reeves said: “Thank you all for your tremendous support for The Batman. We couldn’t have gotten here without the faith and enthusiasm of all your teams around the world. I’m excited to jump back into this world for the next chapter.”
Is there a release date for The Batman 2?
We have a rough window
While an official release date is yet to be announced, reports have suggested the sequel will not land in cinemas until 2025 “at the earliest”.
According to Variety, in a report about James Gunn and Peter Safran’s appointment as head of DC Films, a detail mentions that Reeves has yet to finish the script on The Batman follow-up.
“Also on the deck is a sequel to The Batman,” the report reads. “But writer-director Matt Reeves has yet to deliver a finished script, so that movie will not hit theaters until 2025 at the earliest.”
Who is returning for The Batman sequel?
It’s safe to assume some names are locked in
The only confirmed cast member for the sequel is Robert Pattinson as Bruce Wayne, although it’s reasonable to assume some other core cast members will be back, including Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Jeffrey Wright as Jim Gordon and Andy Serkis as Alfred.
The big question is who will be the villain? In The Batman, The Riddler, played by Paul Dano, was incarcerated in Arkham Asylum, where he met a version of the Joker played by Barry Keoghan. It’s likely these both could play a role in the sequel, although their involvement is yet to be confirmed. As he’s set to receive his promised standalone spin-off series, Colin Farrell might also reappear as The Penguin.
The only character who definitely won’t return is Carmine Falcone (John Turturro) who was killed in The Batman.
What have the cast and creators said about the sequel?
There’s been some villain chat
Matt Reeves has teased his interest in a number of Batman villains. Speaking at a press event in February 2022 (via Collider), the director expressed his interest in taking some of DC’s fantastical villains and making them more realistic.
“I just feel drawn to finding the grounded version of everything,” Reeves said. “So to me it would be a challenge in an interesting way to try and figure out how that could happen, even the idea of something like Mr. Freeze, that’s such a great story, right? I think there’s actually a grounded version of that story, which could be really powerful and could be really great.”
Along with Mr. Freeze, Reeves has also commented on the possibility of gifted surgeon and Batman baddie Hush making a debut at some point, although it might not be in the sequel.
Asked by a fan what character from the comics he’d love to translate into the films (via Twitter Movies), Reeves said: “I think Hush is a really interesting one to do. I’ll choose Hush, but that doesn’t mean the next [villain] will be Hush. I just want to say, there are so many.”
Pattinson has also shared his favourite storylines from the Batman universe, where he names the Court of Owls, a hidden society that secretly rules Gotham. “I’d love to do something like Court Of Owls,” Pattinson told Den Of Geek. “There are elements of The Batman which are kind of horror and I think it really feels quite new for Batman.”
The other villain he mentions is Calendar Man, a baddie who commits crimes that correspond with holidays and significant dates. The character made a cameo appearance in The Suicide Squad, where he was played by Sean Gunn.
Are there any spin-off shows in development?
Prepare for a new wave of DC TV
The Batman essentially seeded a number of future projects within the DC Extended Universe. In March 2022, it was confirmed HBO Max was developing a spin-off series about The Penguin starring Colin Farrell, which will pick up after the film’s events.
According to Farrell, the show will explore the character as “he rises through the darkened ranks to become The Penguin”. Lauren LeFranc will serve as writer and showrunner on the series, with Reeves, Farrell and Dylan Clark all set to executive produce.
Another spin-off series in development will revolve around Arkham Asylum, which evolved from an original plan to create a Gotham PD series. As reported by Variety in October 2022, Antonio Campos (The Staircase) will serve as writer and showrunner on the series.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Reeves is also meeting with writers and directors to “build out movies” focused on a number of Batman villains. While unconfirmed, characters mentioned in the report include Scarecrow, Clayface and Professor Pyg, which are described as “in the very early stages of gestation”.