Production On The Penguin HBO Show Put On Hold

First Image From The Penguin HBO Series Released

DC Studios’ production on The Penguin for Max, formerly HBO Max, is now on hold due to the Writers’ Guild of America (WGA) strike. Another major project comes to a standstill in the absence of a writer during production despite having an already completed script.

Days after the onset of the writers’ strike, productions came to a standstill one after another. DC Studios now has The Penguin’s shoot on hold without a writer to make the necessary changes during filming. It is because despite the series already having a completed script, there are times when changes have to be made as the need arises.

Certain factors are variables in the actual shoot. Thus, what may be completed on paper doesn’t necessarily immediately make sense when cameras are rolling. Certain workarounds are needed to push the plot forward. Sometimes, scenes are needed to be added for the end result to make sense.

Many things will require the presence of a scriptwriter when the director begins to shout ‘action!’. Character lines need to make sense. And what characters say in a specific scene adds to the complexity of the role as well as the story.

While some have continued on with their production despite the strike since the script is already complete, the same cannot be said for a lot of high-tier projects that will affect a broader umbrella of a franchise. The Penguin, being a spin-off of Matt Reeves’ The Batman focusing on the rise of the new leader of the crime syndicate in Gotham City, is no different.

The Penguin for HBO Is Put On Hold Due To Writers’ Strike

READ MORE: The Penguin Teaser Trailer Has You Rooting For The Villain

Deadline reports that production for The Penguin‘s shoot is put on hold. Writers who didn’t cross the picket line, in effect, crippled the progression of the series in development.

The series had been scheduled to film in Westchester, NY. However, WGA East picketers, Teamsters and local guilds were successful in disrupting the production. Participants take to Twitter to post the day’s happenings. Ryan Kennedy, with the user account @TheRyanK, wrote:

The Batman: trying to shut The Penguin down since 1941

The @WGAEast: manages it in one day

#WGAstrong #UnionStrong

Currently, on its 16th day since May 2, writers are steadily making the production companies feel the weight of their action, and in most parts, non-action. There are, however, now rising concerns that the strike, while sending a message of the importance of hearing what the writers are asking for, is also hurting other aspects of production.

Some are reacting that because one or a handful of writers are not on set for the filming, a whole crew has lost their wages for the whole time that production is on hold. And no one is talking about their immediate concerns. There is one anonymous comment on Deadline’s article saying the person was supposed to work that day but didn’t get to and now doesn’t have his pay.

Meanwhile, those who agree with the efforts and believe in the cause of the writers’ strike defend that they do it for everyone’s benefit. Going further, once they have secured a better and fairer contract for the writers, then they can support the rest of the production guilds to negotiate better contracts of their own.

WGA Strike Puts HBO The Penguin Production On Hold


Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

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There is just cause for the writers to take action and put their feet down for their conditions in future contracts. The industry has changed since the rise of streaming projects. As the world changes and evolves, considerations and stipulations on work contracts should also change and evolve for the benefit of all parties.

In the end, there are people behind the contracts. People at the end of the signatures provide means of living to several families. That is what should be the priority.

Starring Colin Farrell as the eponymous crime leader Oswald Cobblepot aka The Penguin, directed by Craig Zobel with showrunner Lauren LeFranc, the series is set to stream on Max. The release date is still under wraps.

What do you make of the writers’ strike putting the production of The Penguin on hold? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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