LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 18:  American actors Jack Nicholson (R) and Danny DeVito are seen leaving a performance of "Crazy For You" at the Prince Edward Theatre on February 18, 1993 in London, England.. (Photo by Dave Benett/Getty Images)
Movies - TV
Jack Nicholson
Had A Hand In Danny DeVito Becoming The Penguin In Batman Returns
Joining Michelle Pfieffer and Christopher Walken as the villains in “Batman Returns,” Danny DeVito took on the role of the Penguin and created one of the most convincingly deranged and unsettling villains ever seen at the time. DeVito was highly committed to the part and gave a memorable performance; however, his involvement in the movie almost didn’t happen.
Newspapers began reporting the actor had been cast in the “Batman” sequel as the Penguin, but no one had ever approached DeVito about the movie. The actor was upset about the newspaper’s claim and asserted that he wouldn’t be playing Penguin; he later changed his mind after meeting with Tim Burton, recalling he got “hooked into what [Burton] was talking about.”
After Burton’s initial choice of Marlon Brando was rejected, the character was reimagined into the grotesque figure that ended up in the film, and DeVito became the first choice. But it’s reported that Jack Nicholson, who played the Joker in the previous film, had to convince his friend to take the role and pointed out the financial benefits of starring in a Batman movie.