JK Simmons on playing Commissioner Gordon despite not reading the comics: 'He's the old guy with the moustache'

The character will first appear in Justice League: Part One

Jack Shepherd@JackJShepherd
Monday 18 April 2016 09:31
JK Simmons in Spider-Man
JK Simmons in Spider-Man

While Batman v Superman may have failed to meet many fans’ expectations, Warner Bros. is still adamantly pushing forward with their Zack Snyder-directed Justice League film.

Already, we know Batman (Ben Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Flash (Ezra Miller), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Lois Lane (Amy Adams) and Superman (Henry Cavill) will appear in the film, along with one new comic book stalwart: Commissioner Gordon.

Earlier this year, superhero-movie veteran JK Simmons was confirmed to be playing Batman's ally, dashing all hopes of the Oscar-winning actor appearing as J. Jonah. Jameson in Spider-Man: Homecoming (having previously played the Daily Bugle editor in Sam Raimi’s trilogy).

Speaking about the upcoming character with Collider, Simmons revealed he hasn’t read the Batman comics yet but has watched past iterations of the character, including Gary Oldman and Pat Hingle’s take on the iconic officer. He added how his knowledge of the character currently extends to Gordon being "the older guy with the moustache who relates with our hero in a certain way".

“I’m still a couple of months out from doing that and I have two other films before then, so I haven’t gotten started on that,” he said when asked whether he had begun reading the comics.

“Obviously, a lot of really wonderful actors have played that character previously, and most of them I saw at the time the movies came out, never imagining that I would be doing the same thing.

“So, I can’t say that I don’t have some impression of that character in my head that’s based on what I saw, but I’m not planning on going back and watching any of the other films. I’m just planning on learning as much as I can about him through the comics and getting my feet wet in the first movie, and then hopefully continuing on from there.”

He went on to liken revisiting the character to his theatre work: “I take this from my days doing theater. If I was doing a musical, I would never listen to the cast album because I wanted to do my version of something.

“I’m sure there will be differences and similarities with what Gary Oldman or Pat Hingle have done before, but I’m just going to try to do my take on it and be as informed as I can about the rich history of the Batman universe, going into it.”

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Simmons also compared the upcoming role his previous part in Spider-Man, discussing how Jameson was a comic-relief yet Gordon is very serious.

“There are easy comparisons to make,” he explained. “I wasn’t a big comic book reading kid, so I did a fair amount of reading when I was playing Jameson, who was very much the comic relief in those movies. Even in the comics, he was a blowhard who was all bark and very rarely bite."

Meanwhile, Batman v Superman has crossed $825 million worldwide but still has some way to be more profitable than Man of Steel.

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