With #Marvel and #DC establishing their cinematic continuities with the #MCU and the #DCEU, respectively, casting an actor for a role is immensely important (yes, I just had to place an alliteration to emphasize my point). Why is it important? These people will most likely be ever-present entities in these universes. As some may argue that there are some roles that don't quite fit certain actors, we can all agree that there are some characters that were perfectly casted, almost blurring the line between fiction and reality itself.
We're talking about actors who walk and talk the role, as if they were the living embodiment of the character they're portraying. We're talking about actors who look the role, where sometimes they think that they themselves were the inspirations for the comic book characters their roles are based on. We're talking about actors who were born to play that role. We're talking about actors been defined by the characters they portrayed, and not in the bad way.
So, sit back and relax as we count down the five actors who were born to play their comic book movie roles. Before we begin the list, let's take a look at some honorable mentions.
(a.k.a. I'm gonna get hate mail for this.)
1. Tom Holland As Spider-Man
We can all agree that #SpiderMan's appearance in #CaptainAmericaCivilWar was something that fans loved and enjoyed. In my opinion, he was easily the best part in the film. However, the reason why Tom Holland only appears in the honorable mentions of this list is due to the fact that Spider-Man's appearance in Civil War was really meant to be an extended cameo, and I would really want to wait for Spider-Man: Homecoming before I cement Tom Holland as the perfect Peter Parker and Spider-Man.
2. Heath Ledger As The Joker
Now, before you get your pitchforks and torches, hear me out! Heath Ledger was the absolute perfect Joker. He fully embodied a Joker that was realistic, cunning, ruthless, and absolutely funny. However, he was a Joker that could only exist in Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy. Despite Heath Ledger's status as arguably the best #Joker on the silver screen, try imagining this Joker in the DCEU. That would take a whole lot of imagination as well as some stylistic tweaks. I don't think Heath Ledger's Joker would fit in a less realistic continuity, even if the studio behind the DCEU aims to make the movies more gritty and realistic.
3. Peter Stormare As Lucifer Morningstar
I noticed that this segment of the list has a lot of antagonists, but I digress.
Who could forget Peter Stormare's memorable appearance in 2005's Constantine film? For me, that was the best part in an otherwise terrible film. With the film being rather uninspired, Peter Stormare shined as one of the best parts in this film. Sadly, his appearance was rather short, and most of us probably wish that he had more screen time. I think this deserves a shoutout though, so people could recognize how devilish Peter Stormare's portrayal of Lucifer was. Have a look:
If you're still holding your pitchforks and torches, take a look at the list. Maybe you would agree with me (hopefully).
Ready to dive into the main list then? Here we go!
1. Matt Ryan As John Constantine
I have said it before, and I'll say it again: Matt Ryan is a great John Constantine. He brought the trenchcoat-laden, deadpan-snarking, chain smoking occult detective to life. In the first and only season of Constantine, he truly shined as the best part of the series. When news broke out of the series' cancellation, devastated fans launched a social media campaign, aptly named #SaveConstantine. The series was cancelled, but that didn't stop Constantine from appearing in another series, #Arrow. With Matt Ryan returning to his role, and appearing alongside Stephen Amell's Oliver Queen, the ratings of Arrow skyrocketed, most likely due to Constantine's appearance.
With a new animated film titled #JusticeLeagueDark coming out in 2017, Matt Ryan will be lending his voice to John Constantine in the film. With a live-action Justice League Dark film titled Dark Universe, I hope that Matt Ryan will reprise his role as our favorite exorcist, demonologist, and master of the dark arts, this time as a character in the DCEU.
2. Ryan Reynolds As Deadpool
When X-Men Origins: Wolverine came out in theaters, fans of the comics and the film series were appalled at the outcome. Perhaps the most wasted opportunity in the film is the fact that they took the mouth out of the Merc.
Fortunately, when #Deadpool was released in 2016, #Fox redeemed itself, giving us the definitive Deadpool with Ryan Reynolds embracing his role. Ryan Reynolds even acted as Deadpool in the film's marketing campaign, with a notable example of him poking fun at Hugh Jackman in this hilarious video:
Fans absolutely loved Ryan Reynolds's portrayal of Deadpool. It's a wonder that we got lucky with some leaked test footage. Without that, I doubt we would have even had a Deadpool film. This could prove that leaked footage could do some good.
3. Patrick Stewart As Professor Charles Xavier
He looks the part, plays the part, and is the part. When Patrick Stewart was cast to play Professor X, he asked, "What am I doing in front of a comic book?" (Rolling Stone)
In the X-Men films, Patrick Stewart truly embodied the wise, powerful, and charismatic leader of the #XMen. Acting in six X-Men films, and even voicing Professor X in several video games, Patrick Stewart gave us the Professor Charles Xavier that we deserved, and the one we needed. He will reprise his role in the 2017 film, #Logan.
4. Heath Ledger As The Joker
Aha! If you're still reading, then congratulations! Why is Heath Ledger in the honorable mentions list, as well as the main list?
Well, I do have to put Heath Ledger on this list. He really does bring the iconic supervillain to life. In #TheDarkKnight, the Joker was absolutely terrifying as he was hilarious. Heath Ledger locked himself up in a hotel room for three months in order to truly grasp the mind of the Joker. He came up with the Joker's voice, look, and even the minor nuances only the most observant of moviegoers would notice. He truly gave us a Joker of the ages, one that truly rivaled Christian Bale's #Batman, or any Batman to come.
5. Christopher Reeve As Superman
This is the classic portrayal of #Superman. Who could forget Christopher Reeve in Richard Donner's Superman? He wasn't only Superman, he was Clark Kent as well. He really made the glasses look like an incredible disguise, adjusting his posture, mannerisms, and voice in order to persuade the rest of the world that it was impossible that this lowly news reporter was Superman. Whenever he took the glasses off, Christopher Reeve stood tall as the Caped Crusader, showing his power and strength, as well as a believable Superman who kept his head up high whenever trouble was brewing. Take a look at this scene from Superman, and notice every single detail. This scene alone proves Christopher Reeve was the best at playing Clark Kent and Superman.
From the moment we saw him flying to the camera — giving audiences an infectious smile — we knew that Christopher Reeve was the definitive Superman.
With that, the list is concluded. I'm sure we can't wait for future comic book movies to show us that there are more actors and actresses out there who perfectly fit their comic book movie roles. It's a good time to be a comic book movie fan.
Who else do you think is a great comic book movie casting? Sound off in the comments below.