The Batman isn’t even out yet, and people are already speculating about which villains might show up in the next film. Matt Reeves’ upcoming movie has three of the most iconic Bat-rogues in it. It features Riddler, Penguin, and Catwoman. So, who should pop up next? Well, Robert Pattinson has some ideas on who he’d like to see next. And it is not a singular baddie, but a shadowy group of several villains: the infamous Court of Owls.
In an interview with Den of Geek, Pattinson said “I’d love to do something like Court of Owls.” This refers to Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s critically acclaimed 2011 story. It explored a secret society that has been operating in Gotham for centuries, controlling things from behind the scenes. The cult-like organization all wore white owl masks to conceal their identities. Members include people from Gotham’s most powerful and elite families. They have an army of undead assassins they refer to as Talons; the Talons carry out their bidding.
Pattinson added, “There are elements of The Batman which are kind of horror and I think it really feels quite new for Batman.” The Court of Owls has a very horror-movie vibe in the comics, should they wish to continue in that vein for a sequel. Their cult is reminiscent of films like Rosemary’s Baby or Eyes Wide Shut. Their zombified assassins Talons also have a horror-esque vibe. And the creepy nursery rhyme which Gotham’s children recite about them is very A Nightmare on Elm Street. It all seems very in Matt Reeves’ wheelhouse.
With The Batman dealing with the Dark Knight’s most iconic villains, all of whom have appeared in film before, it would be appropriate for a sequel to give us adversaries that have never shown up in live-action. But there is one villain who has appeared in films before, to dubious results. He deserves a do-over. That is Victor Fries, a.k.a. Mister Freeze. Portrayed in campy fashion by Arnold Schwarzenegger in Batman and Robin (and of course by several actors in the Batman ’66 TV series), Mr. Freeze has not appeared in a film for 25 years. But Matt Reeves thinks there’s a way to do it right.
Via Collider, we learned that grounded takes on more fantastical villains is something Reeves is interested in. He said, “I just feel drawn to finding the grounded version of everything. So to me it would be a challenge in an interesting way to try to figure out how that could happen. Even the idea of something like Mr. Freeze, that 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.”
Batman: The Animated Series gave Mister Freeze a tragic origin story, giving the character weight he never had in the comics. With some modifications, it would make for the perfect subject in a feature film. Certainly, the character is due for a redemption film. Just skip all the ice-puns this time, and we might have a real movie there. Now, where do we sign the petition to get a version of Man-Bat up on the big screen? We think he’s long overdue for his close-up too.