Last week, Josh Gad briefly set the internet on fire by posting, without comment, a photo of Batman nemesis The Penguin. As we noted at the time, this also came on the heels of several DC Films executives following the actor on Twitter. That’s a not-inconsequential amount of smoke for any casting rumor, which led plenty of people (ourselves included) to wonder aloud if Gad would have a role in Ben Affleck and Matt Reeves’ upcoming The Batman movie.

Well, you can halt your Josh-Gad-as-Penguin fan art, folks, because it turns out that this was just the actor having a little bit of fun with us. In a recent red carpet interview with MTV (via Heroic Hollywood), Gad was pressed on the swirling Batman rumors and admitted he was just having a little bit of fun:

Just having some fun! That’s it. Really. I promise. There’s no ‘there’ there. You know what? The internet just goes wild  —  I’m just having some fun. Just putting things out there.

When pressed on the subject, Gad admitted that he’d never met The Batman director Matt Reeves but that he wouldn’t be against playing The Penguin in a future movie, describing the tweet as just “putting it out in the ether.” We have plenty of examples of actors garnering public support for a role before the studio has even cast a character; if there’s anything serious to Gad’s post, it seems to be that he’s trying to encourage folks to start linking him to a role to ensure he at least gets a meeting if/when the character shows up in the DC Cinematic Universe.

And if it’s all just a joke? Honestly, I don’t blame Gad for having a little bit of fun at the expense of his followers. It wasn’t that long ago that Armie Hammer  —  who seems to treat his Twitter account as one giant, interactive easter egg  —  admitted that he spent weeks trolling Green Lantern Corps fans on twitter with his constant references to Hal Jordan. Why can’t Gad have a little bit of fun, too? If we’re going to treat every suspicious post as proof positive that an actor will be joining a major blockbuster franchise, then there’s no reason these actors can’t turn the game against us.

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