Barry Keoghan says he “just wanted swag to come across” in his audition for the Riddler

Barry Keoghan has revealed more details about his initial audition for the role of The Riddler in Matt Reeves’ The Batman.

Keoghan revealed in October last year that he had first auditioned for Riddler, sending director Matt Reeves an “unsolicited” recording of himself to campaign for the role. The audition clip – which he shared online and can be seen below – instead landed him the role of the Joker once Paul Dano was named the Riddler.


Now, speaking to Esquire for a profile, Keoghan has opened up to share more details about his initial audition tape, including the fact that it only cost ten dollars to make. For his take on the Riddler, Keoghan said he was channelling his inner-Stanley Kubrick and referenced A Clockwork Orange by donning suspenders, a bowling hat and walking with a cane.

“I just made it up. I wanted to make it Kubrick-y: symmetrical, the X on the back, the square doorframe, everything square. I just wanted swag to come across. Swag and endearing,” Keoghan told Esquire.  “It was just me giving my idea. And then I’s like, ‘I’ma send this in!’”

Four months after sending in the tape, the actor received a call from producer Dylan Clark. “The Batman wants you to play The Joker – but you cannot tell anyone,” his agent told him.

Keoghan described his take on the Joker as “a bit charming and a bit hurt, a broken-down boy,” adding: “I wanted some sort of human in there behind the makeup. I want people to relate to him… [to know] this is a façade he puts on.”

Barry Keoghan at the premiere of ‘The Batman’. Credit: Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

While a sequel to The Batman has officially been greenlit, Keoghan said last year that he hasn’t yet been asked to reprise his role as The Joker. “As soon as that call comes, I’m their man, I’m there,” he said.


The Batman scored a four-star review from NME‘s Alex Flood, who wrote: “Director Matt Reeves has mixed up gritty mob drama with film-noir detective thriller – and thanks to Dano’s ultra-creepy villain, some psychological horror too. Most of the time it comes off brilliantly. Pattinson plays him with a dour fanaticism that only occasionally topples over into parody (“I’m vengeance” could’ve come straight from the script of The LEGO Batman Movie). Slighter than Bale and Affleck, Pattinson’s Batman moves more slowly and deliberately than his predecessors. It’s as though he’s permanently punch-drunk, dazed from months of getting the shit kicked out of him every night.”