Here's everything we know so far about The Penguin series coming to Max!

Are you ready to see the rise of a relentless supervillain in DC's most dangerous city? Here's everything we know about the Penguin series coming to HBO Max!
The Penguin. Courtesy of Macall Polay/Max
The Penguin. Courtesy of Macall Polay/Max /

Matt Reeves' The Batman premiered to great critical and commercial success back in 2022, taking the world by storm in the process. With a movie so acclaimed by critics and fans alike, Warner Bros. and DC wasted no time in expanding its universe by green-lighting a spinoff series centered around Oswald Cobblepot himself. Colin Farrell - who interpreted the role to perfection in Matt Reeves' movie - is set to make a return in the Max show. And now that we're closer to The Penguin's release date, we have to ask: what do we really know about it?

Well, thanks to many interviews, leaks, and news, we have a clear idea of what will be in store when DC ventures into the small screen again. So grab up a black umbrella, because it's time to break down everything we know about The Penguin so far!

The Penguin is expected to arrive fall 2024

While Warner and Max have yet to announce a specific release date for The Penguin, that doesn't mean we're completely in the dark regarding its premiere. The highly anticipated series featuring Colin Farrell as one of Gotham's most wanted has a release window of Fall, 2024.

Interestingly enough, it appears there were plans for an even earlier release, but that couldn't come to fruition. According to Meghan O’Keefe on X (formerly Twitter), we would've seen Oswald Cobblepot's rise to power at some point during Spring. However, the series got delayed due to the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes of 2023.

So when can we expect to learn more about The Penguin's release date? Well, San Diego Comic-Con is just around the corner, taking place in July. The massive event would be the perfect time for DC to finally break the silence about The Penguin's premiere date. And who knows? Maybe they could also surprise us and drop a new look at the series. So fingers crossed for that!

There is a teaser for the series, but no full-length trailer yet

In March 2024, DC gave us our first teaser trailer for The Penguin (which you can watch above). While it doesn't reveal much of the plot - aside from giving us an idea of Oswald's aspirations - it does give us a great sense of the series' tone alongside a first look at some characters such as Sofia Falcone.

In the clip, Oswald reflects on how a gangster named Rex Calabrese was celebrated when he died in the form of a parade that was thrown. He spoke of him with pride, asking the audience: "Can you imagine? To be remembered like that." It's clear that he has intentions of crafting a similar legacy for himself in Gotham City.

However, the question has to be asked: now that the teaser has been released, when can we expect to see the first full-length trailer? Well, again, San Diego Comic-Con would be the perfect place for Max to reveal everything related to The Penguin.

Fortunately, it won't be long before that day comes, as SDCC is scheduled to take place from Jul 25 to Jul 28 (a little more than a month at the time of writing this). So fingers crossed we learn more from the highly anticipated series there!


This iteration of Oswald Cobblepot was first introduced in Matt Reeves' The Batman, with Colin Farrell taking on the role and giving us a phenomenal performance. So of course, he's set to play the character once again in The Penguin spinoff series. However, he won't be alone as other big-name actors are set to share the screen with him.

One key aspect of The Penguin's plot appears to be de vacuum of power that Carmine Falcone left behind after being killed in the events of The Batman. So it doesn't come as a surprise that Sofie Falcone - his daughter - will be one of the protagonists in the Max series. A role as important had to be portrayed by a versatile actress, and that's exactly what Warner found in the form of Cristin Milioti. The Palm Springs and How I Met Your Mother star will act as a lead alongside Colin Farrell.

As if that wasn't enough, it has recently been revealed that Mark Strong joined The Penguin's cast. That would mark the third time we've seen the British actor on a live-action DC project. First, he interpreted Sinestro in 2011's critically bashed Green Lantern. Afterward, he once again took on the role of a villain as Doctor Sivana in 2019's Shazam! Now, he's set to star opposite Colin Farrell in an undisclosed role. But how do we know he'll appear in The Penguin? Well, personal trainer Giacomo Farci was asked in the comments of an Instagram post if he worked on the upcoming DC series. Unafraid of revealing any surprise, Giacomo confirmed he trained Mark Strong for it.

Here's a list of cast members set to make an appearance in The Penguin:

  • Colin Farrell as Oswald Cobblepot
  • Cristin Milioti as Sofia Falcone
  • Clancy Brown as Sal Maroni
  • Michael Zegen as, reportedly, Alberto Falcone
  • James Madio in an undisclosed role
  • Scott Cohen in an undisclosed role
  • Rhenzy Feliz in an undisclosed role
  • Michael Kelly in an undisclosed role
  • Shohreh Aghdashloo in an undisclosed role
  • Deirdre O’Connell in an undisclosed role
  • Mark Strong in an undisclosed role

How many episodes will the first season have and how long will they be?

The first season of The Penguin will have eight episodes under its belt. Better yet, thanks to Colin Farrell - Oswald Cobblepot himself - we know how long we can expect each episode to be. In an interview with Collider, Colin said the first season would have a runtime of six to eight hours:

"I read the first episode, which is just so tasty and so unusual as the character was on the page and what Matt Reeves kind of envisioned when he was thinking of this iteration of the bang up of Oz. So yeah, it’ll be, I think six or eight hours."

Colin Farrell

Based on the Irish actor's comments, we can assume each episode will be between 45 and 60 minutes long. That gives audiences enough time to see Oswald's arc to be properly developed on the small screen. Besides Sarah Aubrey - head of originals at Max - talked to Variety about how the first season's length will allow for many twists and turns to be developed over time:

"It is a great example of having the time over eight episodes to tell a longer-arc character story with a lot of delicious twists and turns and new characters."

Sarah Aubrey

Can one of those "delicious twists" be the appearance of Robert Pattinson as Batman? One can only hope.

The Penguin's plot will see Oswald's rise to power

During the ending of Matt Reeves' The Batman, there is a scene where Oswald Cobbelpot watches over a flooded Gotham with a look of ambition. Clearly, he was planning on taking over the city since Carmine Falcone was out of the picture. And wouldn't you know it, but that's exactly what The Penguin will be about.

The Penguin
The Penguin. Max original. /

Audiences will see Oswald's rise to power in the Max series, as revealed by Colin Farrell in an interview with MovieZine:

"It is one man’s rise to what he has always dreamed of inhabiting which is a certain power or social status and, you know, the death of Carmine Falcone at the end of the film leaves this vacuum in Gotham to be filled and so there are various people that are grabbing for that power"

Colin Farrell

That means it wouldn't be much of a shock if other famous Batman villains made a surprise appearance by attempting to fill the void left by Carmine Falcone. Maybe we'll get to see Black Mask or Hugo Strange at odds with Oswald Cobblepot. Or perhaps The Penguin will mark the first live-action appearance of Copperhead. The possibilities are as endless as they are exciting.

Additionally, Sarah Aubrey revealed when will the series take place in-universe in an interview with Variety:

"Penguin’ will sit immediately after the end of ‘The Batman’ and temporally before the events of the second movie. The show will come out in between the two movies."

Sarah Aubrey

Not only will The Penguin expand on the world introduced in 2022's The Batman, but it will act as a bridge between the first movie and its planned sequel. This means that the series is a must-see for anyone who loved Robert Pattinson's take on the Caped Crusader.

The series will be for mature audiences due to its violence

Audiences should expect any Batman adaptation to be dark, grim, and ruthless (unless we're talking about Batman & Robin, that is). However, it appears Lauren LeFranc - showrunner and writer of The Penguin - went to extreme lengths to ensure that was also the case for the upcoming DC series. As revealed by Colin Farrell in an interview with MovieZine, audiences should prepare to witness a dark narrative filled with lots of violence:

"It is dark, that is what I can tell you about it. It is really dark and really heavy I think. (...) It is incredibly violent (...) Lauren LeFranc wrote a really twisted eight hours of television."

Colin Farrell

Colin's comments are the cherry on top of the cake when considering The Penguin received a TV-MA rating. That means Oswald Cobblepot's stand-alone spinoff will be darker than The Batman, the original movie that inspired it. Matt Reeves' take on the Caped Crusader was, by all means, gritty and dark, and yet it only received a PG-13 rating. So we can expect the Penguin to spill more blood than The Riddler ever did as he makes his way to the top of Gotham City.

Meanwhile, be sure to stick around Bam Smack Pow for everything superhero-related.

The Penguin is set to release on Max in Fall, 2024.

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