Batkid baddie is London-raised hero
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If you’re a vicious crime lord and 10,000 people have gathered to boo you, it’s got to be a bad day.
But for Mike Jutan, Friday was the greatest day ever.
For one day only, the Londoner became the Penguin, one of the villains defeated by the unstoppable Batkid in the inspiring story that’s been wowing people all over the world.
“I work with Batman,” he explained.
By that, Jutan means Eric Johnson, who played the DC Comics hero to help the Make-A-Wish Foundation grant an incredible wish for five-year-old leukemia survivor Miles Scott.
“I had no idea it was going to be this big,” said Jutan, who grew up in and still has ties to Lodnon. “When I was asked to do it, I thought we would just put on some costumes and romp around a playground for 10 minutes for a little kid.
“It certainly turned into something else.”
Three months ago, he was at a barbecue with Johnson and Johnson’s wife Sue — who played a damsel in distress on the day — and asked to get involved.
But as the planning continued, the event got bigger and bigger until Jutan, having kidnapped San Francisco Giants mascot Lou Seal, found himself snarling at a massive crowd from the back of a Bentley.
“We kind of closed down the whole city,” Jutan laughed.
In full costume as the Penguin, Jutan he and his captive were driven from Union Square to AT&T Park, where the final confrontation took place.
Batkid and Batman arrived in their Lamborghini Batmobiles to take him down.
There was an obstacle course, a smoke bomb, a slide and a defeat for the Penguin in his secret lair.
As for Batkid, he’s left a lasting impression on his arch-enemy.
“You could see the fight in his eyes,” said Jutan. “What a strong-willed kid. He was amazing.”
London’s Penguin at a glance
— Mike Jutan, 31, is a software engineer with Industrial Light and Magic in San Francisco. That’s the company headed by George Lucas of Star Wars fame.
— Jutan has worked there since 2007 and worked on the Avengers, Transformers and Iron Man movies.
— He was born in Hamilton but moved to London when he was four-years-old.
— He went to Sherwood Forest Public School, Orchard Park Public School and London Central Secondary School.
— If you want to buy him a drink, he’ll be home for a visit this Christmas.