Monday, February 1, 2010

JLA: The Movie – How it should be done (Part 5)

As per usual, first time readers are directed to please read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4 before reading the rest of this post.

Okay, so we’re missing some actors for some of our supporting roles (Booster Gold and Mister Miracle most notably). Hey, it’s a trilogy, remember? We’re introducing characters gradually. So, we don’t have to have a MASSIVE roll call in the first scene of the first movie.

When you’re stuck in any creative endeavour, a great piece of advice is to work backwards. In casting terms, this is just offering up names of actors you’d like to see in your movie without thinking about specific parts. After you have the names, think which open slots fit which actors.

Here’s what I dreamt up:

James Roday (from Psych) has a talent for one-liners, intellectual humour, and sarcasm. How about giving him the Blue Beetle role? That is, if Ted Kord makes it into the movie. His hair colour is a lot closer to Ted’s than other actors I know.

If Blue Beetle did make it into the movie, it would go down a little something like this...You remember the fact that Booster is a time-traveller, right? Goldie wants to save his heroes the JLA, but doesn’t know how. Well, that’s not the only bit of info about which he’s not 100% confident. It turns out that where (or when) he’s from, this info isn’t freely available. Yup, Booster had to steal it (in data-form) and flee to the past almost immediately without reading it. Unfortunately, it turns out that time travel isn’t like clicking your ruby shoes together. No, it’s more like riding a rollercoaster into the ocean where an undertow violently unseats you. Bad news: Skeets was damaged in the time jaunt. Now Booster has the when but not the how or where of the JLA’s demise. Part two of the stolen data (which was derived from a simulation*) gives him a name of someone who could help and the coordinates of this person’s nearest (temporally speaking) confirmed location. The name and coordinates are corrupted somewhat. So, midway through the mission, Booster sneaks off to find “Ted K----” in the now larger search area and meets Blue Beetle. Booster finds this out much later, but he was supposed to find Ted Knight (a.k.a. Starman).

* The simulation’s purely academic purpose was (or will be :)  to discover how the deaths of the JLA members could have been prevented, but any real attempt would be illegal. The future has its own irony.

Another casting option would be to give my initial Mr Miracle candidate (Ray Park) the role of Blue Beetle purely for his acrobatic prowess, but we’d lose the Beetle humour (or so we think).

Jensen Ackles (from Supernatural) has a talent for anything not mundane, physical acting, can come off as cocky, and delivers hilarious lines. I suspect he would make a really great Blue Devil. In fact, he might elevate the character. Alternatively, you could cast him as Booster Gold, if only for the fact that initially both characters try (too hard) to prove that they belong in the league. That's where his talent for playing up cockiness comes in handy.

As an unrelated aside, I’m totally straight when I say that I’d love to Mister Ackles in a Green Lantern uniform, but not in this movie and not necessarily playing a well known GL. I just think a classic GL mask would suit his face and clean-cut look.

Blue Devil meeting Blue Beetle – great dialogue is a must. This point could be moot if it’s nay to the Beetle’s inclusion.

How about James McAvoy (from Wanted) as Mister Miracle? Remember, there’s supposed to be a bit of a size difference between Scott and Barda. Lucy Lawless is 5'11 tall. I’ve always pictured Barda as say five years older than Scott as well. Perhaps McAvoy (Height 5'7'') looks too much like a wimp to play Scott...

Jake Gyllenhaal (Height 5'9'') could also be a good Mr Miracle.

Some other casting options:

Sean William Scott as Booster Gold could work, because Booster comes off as someone who’s in it for himself (at least to some of the JLA) and the actor always strikes me as semi-weasel-esque ambitious type (just his face).

Joaquin Phoenix as Orion might work. I think Phoenix has sadness in him - a sadness that a son would carry when he realizes that he will never experience peace as long as his father is around...

This Joaquin could pull off the son of Darkseid...

But not this Joaquin (below)

Are there any objections to Rebecca Romijn (from the X-men movies) or Jamie King (from Sin City) as Black Canary?


Jessica Biel is the PERFECT Hawkgirl. Yeah, I wasn’t exactly planning to have Hawkgirl in the JLA movie, but Miss Biel is just a great fit in terms of attitude and looks that you could work her into the plot. I mean, Hawkman and Hawkgirl are two totally different personas. Maybe, we’ll go with how their relationship is portrayed in JSA or maybe we’ll let the audience infer it during the story’s most dangerous scenes (when they are split up).

How about Clancy Brown as Darkseid (or the voice of Darkseid)? Okay, he does Lex Luthor's voice in animated DC movies, but he could pull off Darkseid.

"Superman, you have no concept of forever!"

Next time: A shocking surprise called...Part 6!


  1. I think James Roday is perfect for Ted Kord! What an inspired choice. He's got the personality AND the right look. You're a heck of a lot better at casting than I am.

    " in the now larger search area and meets Blue Beetle. Booster finds this out much later, but he was supposed to find Ted Knight (a.k.a. Starman)."

    That's a great plot twist.

    I haven't seen Jensen Ackles in action, but judging by your previous casting decisions I'm sure he'll work. (I'm just too squeamish to watch Supernatural.) Sean William Scott might work well, too, though...

    I'd pick McAvoy or Gyllenhaal for Mr. Miracle.

    Jamie King I think fits the role of Canary than Rebecca Romijn. I like Rebecca Romijn a lot--but she's too statuesque and cold to play Canary. I see Canary as grittier. Plus Rebecca is so tall. But maybe she'd play a more playful Canary, so it could work.

    Jessica Biel would be a great Hawkgirl, I think. As long as she can put a little spunk in the role, I'd be happy.

  2. I'm particularly proud of the James Roday / Blue Beetle (Ted Kord) choice.

    I agree with all of your points.

    Do you remember who you liked as Hawkman or Green Arrow? I know I threw a lot of names into the hat but never decided on anyone.

    Have you started your comics blog yet? If not, have you given some thought to the Blog title AND the url/address?

  3. I'll have to look back at your Hawkman choices to see. I don't remember off the top of my head who I had picked, if any.

    I actually did start a comics blog! I don't know if it'll last, as I'm not the best at coming up with ideas...but I put up a few posts and participated in Frank (from Idol Head's challenge) by writing a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure tale featuring the Metal Men. I wound up going with Comics Make Me Happy, though I'm still not settled on it as a final choice...I did want to incorporate your ideas into it somehow. (Perhaps having JJ Strange as a "guest commentator.")

    URL is, hope you enjoy!