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Dream Casting: An Avengers Reboot
Dream Casting is an imaginative look at the casting process of potential Hollywood projects based on comics and other media. This isn't just about what is being made; this is about what should be made, and who we think should be the stars.
Everybody's talking about the Avengers this week. In the face of Avengers: Endgame, the end (-ish) of the current story cycle, we're all wondering what the future of the team will look like. Obviously, Disney and Marvel have no plans to reboot the franchise anytime soon; the movies will keep being set in the same universe, and any empty spaces left by characters who die for good will no doubt be filled by the arrival of new characters.
But what if they were rebooting the Avengers? Since I've already done the other option, this week as a thought experiment I'm reimagining the Avengers from scratch. I returned to the original comics from the 1960s, contemplated those versions of the characters, and cast a modern movie with that vision. I also cast some members of the Masters of Evil to be the villains, although I doubt they'd use that name in a movie.
Chris Pine as Captain America
Obviously casting Wonder Woman's Steve Trevor as Steve Rogers might seem a little on the nose, but the truth is there just aren't that many actors outside of the current MCU who can come close to Chris Evans in portraying the warmth and charisma of Captain America, and Chris Pine could.
Alexander Ludwig as Thor
Alexander Ludwig (Vikings) might lack the easy goofball charisma of Chris Hemsworth, but he's obviously proven he can play a Norse warrior, and he definitely looks the part, so I think it would be okay to have a less comedic Thor this time around.
Diego Luna as Iron Man
Diego Luna (Rogue One) has everything it takes to play Iron Man. He's charismatic, handsome, conveys impressive intelligence, looks great with facial hair... and he's also a very different actor from Robert Downey Jr., which will help avoid comparisons.
Cristin Milioti as the Wasp
Cristin Milioti (Fargo) has a perfect look and just the right personality to play a Janet Van Dyne who's a contemporary of the other Avengers and never got trapped in the Quantum Realm. In short, she'll regain the Founding Member status Janet has in the comics.
Vincent Kartheiser as Ant-Man
This is a younger Hank Pym, not Scott Lang, and Hank is a bit of a jerk. Vincent Kartheiser (Mad Men) has built a career playing jerks, and he and Milioti will make for a believably fractious couple.
Madeline Brewer as Scarlet Witch
Madeline Brewer (A Handmaid's Tale, Cam) is a really great up-and-coming actress whose gothy aesthetic will work perfectly for the Scarlet Witch.
Aaron Paul as Hawkeye
I want to bring back the more sarcastic, humorous Hawkeye of the comics, and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) is exactly the right actor to do that. He would also be great in a spin-off based on the Hawkeye comic by Matt Fraction and David Aja.
Damson Idris as Black Panther
I would be a particular shame to replace Chadwick Boseman anytime soon, but since that's part of the project I'm undertaking here, I do think Damson Idris (Snowfall) has the right sort of regal bearing and good looks for the role of T'Challa.
Alicia Vikander as Black Widow
Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina, Tomb Raider) has proven action skills, and she'd put a new spin on a role that's become almost synonymous with Scarlett Johansson.
Aidan Gillen as Baron Zemo
Aidan Gillen (Game of Thrones) can do a variety of accents and plays amazing villains. I think he can even manage a great performance from underneath the pink mask that this Zemo will absolutely wear.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw as the Enchantress
I've suggested Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Beyond the Lights) for the Enchantress in a previous column, and I continue to think that her level of beauty and glamour are perfect for playing the witchy goddess of beauty and glamour.
Rory McCann as the Executioner
Although Karl Urban was great in this part, I'd like to see an Executioner who's bigger, older, and gruffer. Rory McCann (Game of Thrones) has that in spades.
Awkwafina as Screaming Mimi
She'd be great. I mean, just imagine the on-screen credit: "Awkwafina as Screamining Mimi."