As we've seen in the new Batman v Superman trailer, and as I've already discussed in my article about introducing the Bat Family into the DC Cinematic Universe, Robin is very much a part of Warner Bros' DC films. So I decided to come up with a bit of a fantasy cast for each Robin, past and present. And before I get into it, these castings are purely personal choice, and I haven't taken any casting rumours (like the one that surfaced recently about Zack Snyder's son, Eli, playing Jason Todd) into account.
Dick Grayson - Danny Shepherd
Who better to play Dick Grayson than someone who already has? Danny Shepherd played Nightwing in the YouTube fan film Nightwing: The Series and played the character perfectly. Not only was he an actor, he also wrote the series, borrowing from comics like The Killing Joke and A Death in the Family. He would be perfect to bring Dick to the big screen alongside Ben Affleck's Batman, and having already shown his ability to act in the role of the vigilante in a production that ran on a $35,000 Kickstarter and personal funding (which I believe still came in at under $50k total), imagine how good his performance would be in the big budget blockbuster that a Batman/Titans film would be.
Jason Todd - Thomas Brodie-Sangster
It's hard to believe that Thomas Brodie-Sangster is 25 years old, and that's why he'd be perfect for the Boy Wonder. Still looking like a teenager, he could easily play both past and present versions of Jason. He looks innocent enough to be the teenage Robin, and has displayed a more serious side in Game of Thrones as Jojen Reed, which will help with the Red Hood version of Jason. And for anyone worried about his English accent, his voice role as John Tracy in the new Thunderbirds Are Go series proves he can put on an American accent without breaking a sweat. As Jason, he should be able to win over audiences, both familiar and unfamiliar with the character, with portrayals of both sides of Todd that are clearly within his capability.
Tim Drake - Logan Lerman
Do I even need to explain why this fits? Logan Lerman fits a number of superhero roles. He was my pick for Spider-Man, even though he didn't make the final six. He was my choice for The Flash, but The CW went with Grant Gustin and Warner went with Lerman's Perks of Being a Wallflower co-star Ezra Miller. But no role fits Logan as well as Robin. Just like Brodie-Sangster, he possesses youthful looks that will aid him in his portrayal of the Boy wonder, and he could even go on to become Red Robin. Lerman can both work in an ensemble and play the lead. Both of those sides were seen in Perks, where, despite playing the main character, he had to hold his own alongside Ezra Miller and Emma Watson, two incredible actors. And with Affleck as Batman and Jeremy Irons as Alfred, Lerman's going to need to step up his game again, which I believe he can do. And it's not only me that thinks Lerman would be the perfect Tim Drake. I came across this article earlier on why Lerman must be cast as Drake, and I agree with it all.
Damian Wayne - Asa Butterfield
When I was thinking of who to cast as the most recent Robin, only one person came to mind. Look at Asa Butterfield and tell me he doesn't look like Damian Wayne. Okay, so he missed out Spider-Man. Big deal. DC are poised to slaughter Marvel in cinemas if they get their films right, and Asa might not mind missing out on the Wall Crawler if he gets the role of the son of the Dark Knight. At 18, he's the youngest actor on this list, fitting for the youngest Robin, and this role could catapult an already promising career to the next level. Being on a set with actors like Affleck, Irons and Jared Leto (and maybe even Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, and the rest of the Justice League if he gets a part in one of those movies) would be great for him as he grows as an actor.
And the girls?
I don't think DC are going down the road of a female Robin just yet. Then again, Jena Malone has been rumoured to be playing Carrie Kelley in BvS. For me, that wouldn't work. Carrie is 13 years old in Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, the graphic novel inspiring Snyder for this movie, so I don't think a 30 year old would be the right choice. Personally, I'd choose Maisie Williams to play Carrie. She's an amazing actress, well deserving of a place in such a big movie that any Batman film would be.
As for Stephanie Brown, one thing needs to be addressed first; don't over-sexualise her. I'm sure your average teenage boy (and middle aged man) would love to turn up to a Batman film and drool over a girl in a small amount of clothing dressed as the Caped Crusader's sidekick. In the comics, she was also the third Batgirl, and it's obvious from her clothing and poses what she was there for. Just google image search her name and the first line will show you what I mean. Once they address that issue, they need to cast someone fitting. The problem is, outside of Maisie and her Game of Thrones Stark family sister Sophie Turner (who is currently playing Jean Gray in X-Men: Apocalypse), there aren't many young actresses I think could take on the role of Robin (or Stephanie's other personas, Batgirl and Spoiler). However, I would choose Dakota Fanning. A promising young actress who already has a well known name and a list of awards, Fanning could step onto the superhero stage as Stephanie Brown and perform well. Her role in the well-received Night Moves opposite Lex Luthor himself, Jesse Eisenberg, showed that she could indeed act in a leading role, and that experience will help when acting with the talent that the DCCU possesses.
And isn't that Stephanie better than some of the other pictures out there?
So that's my fantasy cast for the Robins. I doubt all of these version will appear, and I fully expect DC to stick to Dick Grayson, Jason Todd and Tim Drake. However, Damian Wayne would be great (y'know, son of Batman and all), and introducing Carrie Kelley and/or Stephanie Brown would give some gender diversity to the Batman films, something that the Dark Knight trilogy was lacking. We got Rachel Dawes, Talia al Ghul and Catwoman, and then some supporting characters like Gordon's wife and Bruce's girlfriend from the Russian ballet. The characters you remember from Nolan's movies were all male; Batman, Joker, Ra's al Ghul, Bane, Jim Gordon, Harvey Dent, Scarecrow, Falcone, Alfred, Lucius Fox. You get the picture.
As was the case with my Bat Family article, feel free to respond, be it positively or negatively.