We got a chance to talk to David Mazouz and Sean Pertwee about “Gotham”, and there was even a visit from Doctor Who.
For four years, David Mazouz and Sean Pertwee have portrayed Bruce Wayne and Alfred Pennyworth on Fox’s “Gotham”. Now, they’re filming the final season and getting ready to say goodbye to characters they’ve made their own. During a visit to Tampa Bay’s MegaCon on Sept 23, I had a chance to speak with the duo about what “Gotham’s” final season will have in store. It was a fun chat that even featured a surprise “Doctor Who” reunion.
Bam Smack Pow: What are you excited about for season 5?
Mazouz: Initially, what I was most excited about when we first started shooting was Batman. Now, I know how the show’s gonna end, this is before I did. I was thinking: “Well, this is the last season, there has to be some kind of if not Batman himself, some kind of reference to Batman at the end.” And, that’s what I was excited about. That’s what I was most looking forward to. But, now that we’re halfway done with it, over halfway done with it, which is pretty crazy to think about, and I kind of know the storylines, what I’m most excited about is the grittiness of it and kind of the coming together of our characters to beat one really bad enemy that kind of shows up pretty soon after the premiere. We’ve kind of done things similar to that before, but what’s special about this is the “No Man’s Land” environment. All bets are off. All hell has broken loose. Everybody is out for themselves. It has brought out the grittiest in everybody. It’s really fun to play that. That environment kind of extracts the overarching versions of every character to make them the characters they’re destined to become. That’s what I’m most excited for. The scripts are just really phenomenal. They’re just so hard to put down, every single one that I’ve read. The first seven I can just tell you that they really move and really grip you. Because we’re doing a shorter season, I think the writers were kind of forced to pack twice as much into every episode. Twice as much power. Twice as much intensity.
Pertwee: I’m very excited personally, because I get the opportunity to work with some of the actors I haven’t worked with over the last five years. We’re privileged and lucky enough to be given that chance by Fox and Warner Brothers. Very important that we mention that. We understand it’s a tenuous time. We’re proud and honored to be able to finish the show and give it the ending it richly deserves. We were very worried, all of us, that we were going to leave something we loved unfinished. That would have broken hearts. As you know, the “Gotham” family is strong, from the studios, to the actors to the heads of department. We feel like we’re finishing with dignity and with the ending that it so richly deserves. I feel honored, proud and sad. What I’m most excited by is the fact that we’ve planted our flag in the sand in the legacy that is Batman. This will be a huge culmination for us.
Mazouz: Just like the animated series created Harley Quinn, I feel like characters that we’ve created like Fish Mooney or iterations of characters that we’ve created like SAS Alfred have already been translated in future incarnations. Jeremy Irons stole it straight from Sean Pertwee (laughs).
Bam Smack Pow: And, then there’s the Pennyworth show!
Pertwee: I haven’t read it. It’s very interesting because Danny and Bruno are genius at what they do. I’m really looking forward to seeing it. What I’m proud about is that the fanbase’s interest has been piqued to actually consider Alfred now as a player and be interested enough in his history and his past. We’ve been given the honor of being able to perform 98 hours of television and contextualize and research into these characters.
Mazouz: There was a girl who had a t-shirt that said “Alfred is the real superhero”. There is zero question in anybody’s mind that the reason that Alfred is now being considered a superhero in his own number one slot with his own suit as his cape is because Sean has brought this character a whole other dimension that works. And, that is phenomenal. There’s no question that the reason that the show Pennyworth was ever conceived was because of the way Sean portrayed him in a way so different than anybody else had before him, and the reason Jeremy Irons stole straight from it also (laughs). Because it works.
Bam Smack Pow: Fans have been asking about getting a sixth season. Is there anything they could do to make it happen?
Pertwee: There’s been a lot of noise out there. It’ll be interesting to see what happens. We have no say, unfortunately.
Bam Smack Pow: David, when we first spoke in 2014, you said you wanted the show to run long enough for you to become Batman…
Mazouz: Yeah, I was twelve!
Sean: A third of his life!
Bam Smack Pow: …once the show wraps up, you’ll go down in history as one of the live-action Batmen alongside people like Adam West, Michael Keaton, George Clooney and Christian Bale. Has the weight of that hit you yet?
Mazouz: It hasn’t really hit me, because I haven’t stepped in a Batman suit as of Sept 22, 2018. I don’t consider myself a Batman now. I consider myself a Bruce Wayne. It hasn’t really hit me as of now. I’m not saying that I will! I’m not giving anything away. This is not me saying that I will step in a Batman suit.