20 Movie Stars Who Campaigned for Comic Book Movie Roles

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While back in the "˜90's appearing in a superhero movie wasn't exactely the dream of every actor (unless that movie had Batman in the title), it seems that everybody wants nowadays to appear in a comic book flick. Whether it is Marvel or DC or any other imprint, tons of actors audition and campaign in order to land their dream role.

And it is no surprise - the market is flooded with superhero movies, with this genre breaking record after record at the US or worldwide box office. So who wouldn't want a piece of this pie? Of course, this isn't the only reason why actors and actresses want to become superheroes or supervillains - some of them are actually fans of these properties.

This being said, here are 20 actors and actresses that have campaigned for such a role - of course, don't expect to see in here those who actually managed to sign a deal for a dream role with a major studio.

Tyrese Gibson

For what is worth, the Fast and Furious franchise has already given the world two superheroes: Vin Diesel has been Groot for 2 Guardians of the Galaxy installments, while Gal Gadot has become Wonder Woman. We can also mention in here The Rock, who will portray Black Adam, but he was a later addition to the Fast and Furious movies.

In any way, Tyrese Gibson is yet another actor who wants to become a superhero - namely, John Stewart of the Green Lanterns. With the Green Lantern Corps arriving in 2020 (hopefully), the actor knows that this role is for the taking - and he wants it.

And while he isn't exactely one of the best actors out there, he is still one of the actors that has helped the Fast and Furious franchise become one of the highest grossing franchises of all times. Does Tyrese have what it takes? We doubt it - but that doesn't mean that he won't get it.

Stephen Lang

Even if nobody would have thought, Deadpool is one of the best-reviewed superhero movies and the highest grossing R-rated flick of all times. So having actors campaign for a role in the sequel is no surprise - especially if that is a co-starring role. In this way, actor Stephen Lang (Avatar, Don't Breathe) took it on social media to announce the studio that he wants to portray the time-traveling mutant known as Cable.

And for many fans he was the perfect pick - with his grizzled look and his muscular body, the actor found himself on quite a few fan-lists. It went so far that rumors began to spread saying that he actually nabbed the role.

But it wasn't so - Josh Brolin was cast instead, which makes an even more interesting choice. However, before this announcement was made, Stephen Lang said that he doubts he'll get the role - mainly because of scheduling conflicts (after all, he is set to appear in James Cameron final three Avatar movies).

Missed opportunity - right?

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Sure - in a surprising twist, it was revealed at the end of The Dark Knight Rises that Joseph Gordon-Levitt was actually portraying Robin. However, this isn't the comic book character he wanted to play - and we guess he signed for the Dark Knight trilogy ending because this was a Christopher Nolan film.

Instead, for quite a few years Joseph Gordon-Levitt has been attached for a Sandman adaptation of the Neil Gaiman comic book series. And the actor, who signed with Warner Bros to produce and star in the movie, invested a lot of time in this project - this comes to show how much he wanted this role.

However, after Warner Bros moved Sandman to New Line, the actor was forced to drop out - as he said, New Line wanted something else from a Sandman adaptation, something that wasn't true to the spirit of the Neil Gaiman comic.

In total, the actor invested 3 years of his life (from 2013 until 2016) in this project. And that says something about his commitment.

At this moment, it appears that the Sandman movie won't happen any longer and that it might become a HBO series.

Keanu Reeves

With the actor's star reignited by the John Wick movies and after playing several other iconic roles throughout his career (including in the ones in Matrix and Speed), Keanu Reeves seems to be one of the most fulfilled actors in Hollywood. But it isn't so.

While he brought (a version of) John Constantine to life back in 2005, the actor has most recently revealed that he would have wanted to portray other superheroes. One of them was Wolverine - but he came to the decision that Hugh Jackman was perfect for the role. The other superhero was Batman - but, once again, he didn't get the role.

So now he enjoys these characters just a spectator. As far as we are concerned, maybe it is for the better that he didn't get these roles"¦

Terry Crews

Known as the funny muscular guy, the former American football player has campaigned for a couple of superhero roles in his life. And while there aren't that many African-American superheroes on the big screens, the actor first said that he wants to play the Silver Surfer - a rather ambiguous character from this point of view.

However, when Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer happened, the character was voiced by Laurence Fishburne and played by Doug Jones. So that was a missed opportunity.

Later on, when Marvel and Netflix started the casting for Luke Cage, Terry Crews expressed his interest in portraying the titular character. And, as it turned out, Mike Colter grabbed the role. We haven't decided yet if this was a better decision"¦

Jake Gyllenhaal

One of the most talented actors of his generation, Jake Gyllenhaal has expressed his admiration of superhero movies on repeated occasions, saying that they are myths that are meant to inspire - and, as such, he feels inspired when watching them. And so it shouldn't come as a surprise that he was in the run for two of the most iconic superhero roles ever - Spider-Man and Batman.

Sure - he didn't get any of these roles. Christian Bale was cast as the Dark Knight and Tobey Maguire reprised his role in Spider-Man 2, even if Jake Gyllenhaal was already announced that he'll take on the role.

And the actor did say afterwards that maybe it was for the better and that both of the aforementioned actors did a better job in these roles.

Right now, the actor said that he isn't particularly interested in playing a superhero, but rather on honing his skills as an actor. However, if the opportunity arrives"¦

So what did he choose? He didn't say. But he did say that he felt inspired by Thor.

Norman Reedus

Back in 2002, Norman Reedus appeared as Scud in Blade 2. Since then, besides voicing Frank Castle in the animated Iron Man: Rise of the Technovore, he didn't appear in other superhero flicks. Sure, he is one of the coolest characters to ever appear on the small screens in The Walking Dead (a comic book adaptation), but nothing bigger than that has come his way.

But that doesn't mean that Norman Reedus doesn't have his eyes on a particular superhero. As a matter of fact, after the rights to Ghost Rider reverted back to Marvel Studios, the actor was quite excited about bringing this anti-hero to life - riding a bike and having a flaming skull on his shoulders would be a blast, according to the actor.

Sure, this doesn't mean at all that Marvel will bring Ghost Rider on the big screens - but at least we know what actor really wants to portray the character and would actually be a perfect fit.

Armie Hammer

Besides Tyrese Gibson, there is another actor who heavily campaigned for a Green Lantern role - more precisely, for the role of Hal Jordan. And that actor was Armie Hammer - not exactely the very best actor in Hollywood, but one that certainly looked the part. Things went so far that even Henry Cavill joined him and teased his appearance as Green Lantern in the DCEU.

However, as it turned out, even if the actor expressed his interest time and time again, it didn't really mean that he actually sat down with Warner Bros to talk about this project. And it is a shame, since the actor has tons of potential.

But who knows? Maybe he grabbed the role but he is now pulling a Paul Rudd. Or a Jason Momoa for that matter. We'd love to see him as Hal Jordan!

Ronda Rousey

Back in 2015, when asked whether she'd like to portray a superheroine on film or not, Ronda Rousey (who was, back then, at the peak of her fame as an MMA champion) said that many of the roles she'd want have been already taken. However, there was one that she wanted the most - the role of Carol Danvers, also known as Captain Marvel.

And, for quite a while, her statement maintained the rumor that she has been approached by Marvel for this role - after all, even Kevin Feige said that she'd make an interesting choice.

However, in 2016 it was announced that Brie Larson was selected for the part. And if we'd have to choose between an Oscar winning actress and a former martial artist without any notable role to her career, we would make the same choice.

Maybe some other character would fit Rousey better"¦ Right?

Nathan Fillion

Is it a wonder that Nathan Fillion is on this list? After winning the audiences with his role in Firefly (and then Serenity) and after starring in the beloved Castle series, Nathan Fillion also wants to bring a superhero to life. To be noted, the actor voiced Hal Jordan in a couple of DC animated movies and he also cameoed in the first Guardians of the Galaxy, while having his second cameo from Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 removed.

So what role does he want to play? Apparently, it is a role seemingly made for him: Booster Gold. And that is because this DC superhero is not that bright, a bit vain, a bit show-offy, and totally fun.

To be noted, some time ago Warner Bros has announced that it intends to make a Booster Gold movie, with Greg Berlanti rumored to direct. This was back in May 2016 - however, since then, nothing was heard about this flick. Furthermore, Warner Bros pushed forward quite a few other DC projects.

So Nathan Fillion will have to wait some more until he becomes Booster Gold.

Emily Blunt

The British actress has expressed her interest in appearing in a superhero film on quite a few occasions - last time it was after the release of Edge of Tomorrow, where she proved that she can play a very believable action star. It was then when she said that she'd like to appear in a comic book movie that would scare the bejesus out of her - whatever this might mean.

And, apparently, Marvel has seen her interest way before that. In this way, Emily Blunt was courted for both the roles of Black Widow in Iron Man 2 and of Peggy Carter in Captain America: The First Avenger. However, due to scheduling conflicts, she was forced to turn down the roles.

More recently, she was linked to the Captain Marvel role, which eventually went to Brie Larson.

Bryce Dallas Howard

While she isn't the most well-known actress on this list, Bryce Dallas Howard has quite a few roles under her belt - and while her Jurassic World role (co-starring Star Lord himself, Chris Pratt) is the most recent one, she also appeared in Pete's Dragon, Terminator Salvation, The Twilight Saga, and the little gem 50/50.

But, since we are talking comic book movies, she has also appeared in a minor role in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3 as Gwen Stacy. But even if that was just an extended cameo, it appears that the actress had quite a lot of fun on the set. In this way, most recently, the actress was anxious to see if Marvel will take her campaign for the Captain Marvel role seriously.

We know - Brie Larson took the role. But we do believe that Bryce Dallas Howard has plenty to offer. So who knows? Maybe Marvel already has a role for her in store.

Al Pacino

As said, there was a time when appearing in comic book movies (others than focused on Batman) wasn't on the bucket list of the Hollywood's greats. However, times have changed and now we see stars like Michael Douglas and Sylvester Stallone joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe in roles that could span several movies.

One other star has expressed his interest in joining this shared universe, although he didn't say as whom - and this star is none other than Al Pacino, who made history with movies like The Godfather, Dogs Day Afternoon, Heat, and quite a few others.

After viewing Guardians of the Galaxy back in 2014, the actor praised the movie as being one of the most entertaining, inventive, and beautiful films he has ever since. As such, the actor also said afterwards that he has already met with Kevin Feige and that he has a role in an upcoming superhero flick.

Which is great!

Megan Fox

While Megan Fox isn't exactely the best actor on this list, she surely is famous - after appearing in the Transformers movies, the actress also nabbed a starring role in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise (which is, of course, a comic book movie series). Prior to that, after her breakthrough role in the Transformers flicks, the actress starred in another comic book movie called Jonah Hex (with a couple of other comic book movie actors, such as Josh Brolin, Michael Shannon, Wes Bentley, and Michael Fassbender).

But the actress expressed her interest for another comic book - Gen 13. According to the actress, a Gen 13 adaptation is the perfect occasion for a studio to have a lucrative movie about three super-hot, kick-ass superheroines.

Sure, she also said that Wonder Woman (a role she has been linked with in the past) is a lame superheroine, but maybe this was a case of sour-grapes.

In any way, if this is the kind of movie Megan Fox wants to be in, maybe this movie shouldn't be made.

Eddie Redmayne

Eddie Redmayne is considered one of the most talented actors of the new generation, having already stunned the critics in movies like The Danish Girl and The Theory of Everything. Furthermore, he is also the main star of the Harry Potter prequel series Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. However, not even he could save Jupiter Ascending from being a major flop.

And this leads to him having admitted that he enjoys the movies set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Furthermore, the actor also said that he believes his friends Scarlett Johansson and Tom Hiddleston appear to have loads of fun while on the set. And so he'd like to join them, maybe as an English big baddie.

And we say - yes! Feige should consider him as a Marvel villain!

Kristen Stewart

While Kristen Stewart is best known for the horrendous Twilight franchise, the actress has focused since 2012 on smaller movies - and, despite what everyone would have believed, she was actually lauded by the critics for movies such as Clouds of Sils Maria and Certain Women. So it can be said that Kristen Stewart has come a long way since the Twilight ended.

And it shouldn't be a surprise when hearing that the actress wants to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The actress even said what solo franchise she wants to join - Captain America, which makes it an even more interesting choice.

But, sadly, the Captain America franchise has run its course. But who knows? Maybe she'll land some other role - we know we'd be interested to see her joining the MCU.

Tom Hanks

As one of America’s most beloved actors, Tom Hanks needs no introduction, so we won't say anything about his career.

We will say that he’s expressed interest in appearing in superhero flicks, and it’s a wonder that he the studios haven’t jumped at the chance to court him. Maybe more surprisingly, the actor known for playing good guys has said that he would like to play a Batman villain.

Thankfully, there are tons of Batman villains. Whether Hanks plays someone we’ve already seen or a villain who’s new to the big screen, we’re certain that he’ll make a lasting impression. Who knows? Maybe Matt Reeves is listening. Maybe he has a part for Tom Hanks in the Batman reboot.

Donald Glover

Donald Glover has a role in the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming, but it isn’t his first choice. He was most interested in the role of Miles Morales, who is another version of the web crawler, and he’s made that interest public since Sony’s first Spider-Man reboot. At that time, Andrew Garfield was cast as Peter Parker, and the franchise died after the second movie.

Then Marvel and Fox made their deal, and Donald Glover once again expressed his interest. Unfortunately for him, Marvel went with the Peter Parker version of the character (again) and cast Tom Holland as the web slinger.

It’s interesting that Glover's character remains unnamed. Numerous fans suspect that he’ll play Aaron Davis, Miles Morales’ uncle.

Derek Theler

Derek Theler may not have numerous major roles under his belt, but we should mention him here. Best known for his hit TV series Baby Daddy, Derek Theler has been campaigning via social media for the role of SHAZAM! for ages.

Sure, we could say that these are fan posts, but the fact that he personally knows The Rock (who is playing Black Adam, SHAZAM!'s main antagonist) makes us wonder.

We believe Theler would be a great fit, but we doubt that SHAZAM! will be released anytime soon.

Sean Young

Lastly, we have Sean Young, who’s best known for her role as Rachael in the amazing Blade Runner. She’s also appeared with Bill Murray in Stripes and John Candy in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. She was set to portray Vicky Vale in the first Batman movie, but had to drop out after being injured during rehearsal (Kim Basinger took over for her).

While Young hasn't starred in any other notable movies, she did wage an epic campaign to play Catwoman in Tim Burton’s Batman Returns. She made a Catwoman costume and wore it on the Joan Rivers Show, and even attempted to confront Tim Burton and Michael Keaton wearing the same outfit during production.

We're glad that Michelle Pfeiffer won the role, even though Sean Young missed out despite her historic Blade Runner role.

Most recently, the actress has said that she still wants to appear in a Batman flick, even if it means just playing Selina Kyle’s mother. Go figure"¦

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