Barry Keoghan has shared his audition tape that landed him the role of the Joker in Matt Reeves’ “The Batman.”
The actor, 29, revealed in a new interview with GQ UK that he sent the unsolicited tape to Reeves’ team soon after hearing about the project. Keoghan was angling for the part of the Riddler, which first went to Jonah Hill and then finally to Paul Dano. However, the video caught Reeves’ attention and secured the “Dunkirk” star a spot in the cast as another Batman villain — the Joker.
In his audition tape, Keoghan steps out of an elevator dressed in black pants, a black shirt, bright green suspenders and a bowler cap. His eyes are heavily lined with black eyeliner. He meanders through what appears to be an empty apartment hallway while wielding a cane seemingly as an extension of his body. At the end of the tape, Keoghan appears with a bloody handprint on his cheek as he stares menacingly ahead. Saint-Saëns’ “Danse Macabre” plays throughout.
— Barry Keoghan (@BarryKeoghan) October 3, 2022
“I wanted to be Riddler,” Keoghan told GQ UK, adding that he learned the role had already been cast only after submitting his audition. However, four months later, he got a fortuitous call from his agent. “‘The Batman’ wants you to play the Joker — but you cannot tell anyone,'” Keoghan recalled his rep telling him.
The Irish-born actor went on to say that he wanted his portrayal of the comic book baddie to be “a bit charming and a bit hurt […] a broken-down boy.” He even fought the movie’s makeup team who wanted to change the appearance of his blue eyes for the role.
“I wanted some sort of human in there behind the makeup,” Keoghan said. “I want people to relate to him…[to know] this is a façade he puts on.”
As for whether he will reprise his role as the Joker in “The Batman 2,” the actor says he’s still waiting to hear from Reeves. “As soon as that call comes I’m there, man, I’m there,” Keoghan said.
Reeves has previously suggested that the Joker might not return in the franchise’s next installment.
“It’s not an Easter egg scene,” Reeves said of Keoghan’s Joker scene that ends “The Batman.” “It’s not one of those end credits Marvel or DC scenes where it’s going, like, ‘Hey, here’s the next movie!’ In fact, I have no idea when or if we would return to that character in the movies.”