After months of speculation, it was only recently announced that Robert Pattinson will be the next actor to don the Dark Knight's iconic cape in Matt Reeves's upcoming film The Batman. Unsurprisingly, the response to the casting news was mixed.
While it’s believed The Batman will center around a younger version of Bruce Wayne than we’ve seen previously, there is still a lot of mystery surrounding other major plot points—including which villains will be included, and who will play them.
We Got This Covered reports that various DC characters are being rumored to appear in the film, including Penguin, Catwoman, Riddler, Firefly, Two-Face, and the Mad Hatter. But fans are desperate to know if the most notable Batman villain will be included on the roster: the Joker.
Though there has been no mention of the Joker in conversations surrounding the new film, that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill—nor has it prevented fans from offering up their ideas on who could nail the iconic role, and Macaulay Culkin is apparently at the top of the list.
The former child star has not commented on the validity of the rumors, but many DC fans are on board with it, including digital artist Bryan Zapp who created an image of what Culkin would look like as the Joker.
Meanwhile, Todd Phillips's Joker, a standalone film focusing on the villain’s origin story and starring Joaquin Phoenix, is set to hit theaters on October 4.
Although it could get confusing, The Batman will be part of the DCEU, while Joker will not live in the shared universe, which means there could very well be two portrayals of the same character at the same time. Whether or not Culkin would take on the role—or if there will be a Joker at all—is only up for speculation right now.
[h/t We Got This Covered]