Jack Bannon Explains How ‘Pennyworth’ Goes Beyond Batman Origin Story with Young Alfred

Batman fans are about to take a deep dive into the origin story of butler Alfred and the Wayne family in the new Epix show “Pennyworth.”

Steve Schofield/emmy magazine

The show takes place in the 1960s and will follow a young Alfred Pennyworth, a British SAS Officer who goes on to start a security company and eventually meets Bruce Wayne’s father Thomas.

Jack Bannon, who stars as Alfred, recently opened up to emmy magazine about the role, insisting, “This is not a superhero show. It’s a character-driven drama and very stylized, and we’re all excited by it. Every day when I went to the studio, I counted myself as the luckiest man in the world.”

He has some big shoes to fill, following in the footsteps of stars like Michael Caine.

Bannon revealed, “It was hard to not go back and use other performances as a safety blanket. But this Alfred is unique because he’s optimistic, cheeky, and flirtatious. The world is his oyster.”

Executive producer Bruno Heller told the mag they were looking for a relatively unknown actor for the part. “There’s so much baggage there already, so from an artistic point of view, you don’t want a big star,” he said. “You needed a fresh, clean look for the guy, and Jack has that self-possessed cool charisma.”

Steve Schofield/emmy magazine

Jack, who did have small parts in “Fury” and “The Imitation Game,” fit the bill. He confessed he almost didn’t audition, saying, “I hadn’t landed a job in a couple months and didn’t want to send in the tape because I was so disheartened by the industry. But I figured I might as well learn the lines and do it…. You have to keep plugging away and keep knocking on the door and eventually, hopefully, something will work.”

Bannon shares the cover of emmy magazine with Sir Ben Kingsley, who stars in the Epix show “Perpetual Grace.” Watch the behind-the-scenes video from their photo shoot!

“Pennyworth” premieres July 28 on Epix, and emmy magazine hits newsstands June 10.