As one of DC’s most iconic characters, Green Lantern is expected to debut in the DC Cinematic Universe in Warner Bros.’ Justice League, if not sooner. Of course, there has been much debate on which Lantern to use. Despite the Green Lantern movie’s failure, should WB bring Hal Jordan back, albeit with a different actor? Or should the studio enlist John Stewart, a well-known Lantern who can bring some much-needed diversity to the League? Below, I’ve compiled a list of five actors who should be considered to play the latter on the big screen.
#5 – Will Smith
A generic choice, sure, but this is a piece of casting that could easily work. Smith is one of the most recognizable actors in the world, but some can argue that his career is declining for a number of reasons. However, there’s no denying that Smith would be an interesting choice for John Stewart. He has the acting chops and physicality suited, and attaching a big name to Green Lantern would help audiences forget about the 2011 film more easily. Plus, with a Hancock sequel unlikely to emerge from development hell, a superhero franchise might be the thing Smith needs right now.
#4 – Chiwetel Ejiofor
Ejiofor is a rising star, coming off of a Best Actor nomination at the Oscars for 12 Years a Slave (which won Best Picture). He is an excellent actor who would be an obvious choice for a superhero series. While many fans have suggested that Ejiofor should play Marvel’s Black Panther, he would also be a great choice for John Stewart. He has sci-fi experience with Serenity, and he expressed interest in the comic book movie genre in the past. Additionally, casting an Oscar nominee as Green Lantern would give the franchise much more credibility, and the role could make Ejiofor an even more recognizable name.
#3 – David Oyelowo
Oyelowo is another rising star, known for his supporting roles in Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Lee Daniels’ The Butler. He has also been rumored for blockbusters such as Jurassic World and Star Wars: Episode VII. One way to take advantage of his growing fame, naturally, is to cast him in a superhero film. In past roles, Oyelowo has shown some hardness and a bit of edginess, which would be perfect for John Stewart. Plus, he’ll have more sci-fi experience under his belt with Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar later this year.
#2 – Idris Elba
I’ll go ahead and get the most obvious choice out of the way. Yes, Elba is the fan-favorite for John Stewart, but for good reason. He is currently a go-to guy for tentpoles, after supporting roles in Pacific Rim and the Thor movies. However, he has expressed interest in taking on a real superhero role, and even said he liked the idea of playing Green Lantern. Elba is without a doubt a physical match for Stewart, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s a great actor. Only thing stopping this could be his contract with Marvel, even though his role in the Thor franchise isn’t all that big. However, he’s likely signed on to one more film, which would free him up completely for a DC role.
#1 – Dwayne Johnson
And here we are, at the top of the list. Johnson is actually rumored to be playing John Stewart, as he recently confirmed he is teaming up with DC for an unknown project this year. Johnson playing Green Lantern is actually unique, and I love the idea the more I think about it. “The Rock” is known for bringing struggling franchises back on track – see G.I. Joe, Journey and Fast & Furious. Johnson is also a very bankable actor, increasing interest in his movies. Plus, he’s an absolute boss in anything he’s in, so a comic book movie is a no brainer. Finally, Johnson hasn’t made his love for John Stewart a secret, and he would make anybody forget about the 2011 Green Lantern movie. Of all the DC rumors going around, this is one that I hope turns out to be true.
Who would you like to see play John Stewart/Green Lantern on the big screen?
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