In recent years, Green Arrow has become a more prominent character in the mainsteam DC Universe. The CW’s television adaptation Arrow has been a hit, Oliver Queen became a fan-favorite in previous shows such as Justice League Unlimited and Smallville. Meanwhile, in the comics, Green Arrow was a member of the Justice League of America, and writer Jeff Lemire’s run on the character received critical acclaim.
With this franchise at its highest point right now, it would be surprising if Warner Bros. did not cash in on that with a Green Arrow movie, especially after the unproduced Escape From Supermax script from a few years ago. Sure, the studio may wait until Arrow finishes its run, but if they can have both a Flash movie and a Flash television series going on at the same time, then why not Green Arrow? Plus, Oliver Queen has plenty of potential for the big screen, as a DCEU version can tap into elements of the character that Arrow has not touched yet.
Below, I’ve listed five actors who should be considered for the role of Green Arrow in the DC Extended Universe. Spoiler: there is no Charlie Hunnam on this list.
#5 – Liam Hemsworth
It is a bit surprising that Liam Hemsworth has yet to play a superhero. He auditioned to play Marvel’s Thor – a part which, of course, was later won by his brother Chris – while he is currently wrapping his multi-film role in The Hunger Games saga. Like his more popular brother, Liam is handsome, likable and a decent actor. He would be an ideal choice to land a comic book movie role, and one of these could be Green Arrow.
At 25, as of this writing, Hemsworth would be very age appropriate if Warner went with a younger Oliver Queen; think a Green Arrow: Year One-esque scenario. It would also play a role in Liam headlining his own superhero franchise, while Chris is starring in the Thor series. And with Marvel doing so well having a Hemsworth in its universe, perhaps WB may want to try to cast the younger brother for the DCEU.
Liam would do a good job playing the charismatic, celebrity Oliver Queen. And he has enough action chops to embrace the Green Arrow persona, making him a solid choice to add to the studio’s shortlist.
#4 – Dan Stevens
Former Downton Abbey alum Dan Stevens is currently on the move as an up-and-coming actor in Hollywood. Following his acclaimed performance in The Guest, Stevens will co-star in Disney’s live action Beauty and the Beast adaptation, which will surely be a big hit at the box office. It is only a matter of time before Stevens is cast in a comic book movie role, and Green Arrow is a pretty great idea, in my opinion.
Stevens did an outstanding job with his performance in The Guest
. There were essentially two sides to his character. On the one, we have the initial charismatic, likable guy who is easy to root for. On the other hand, he is a psychopathic serial killer who is absolutely terrifying. Stevens was wonderful in both sides of the role, and he could do an equally great job playing the two different sides to Oliver Queen (the beloved celebrity) and Green Arrow (the questionable vigilante).
Not to mention, physically, Stevens is an ideal fit for Queen. While he can play all kinds of villainous characters in the DCEU – Reverse-Flash, Red Hood, etc. – it would be great to see him take on a heroic character such as Green Arrow. And, again, the actor is a rising star in Hollywood, so Warner Bros. would do well taking advantage of that by casting him in a key DC movie role.
#3 – Alexander Skarsgard
Skarsgard is another fine actor who has yet to join a comic book franchise. Like Liam Hemsworth, he was in the running to play Thor before Chris Hemsworth was cast. Subsequently, that franchise also features Alexander’s father, Stellan Skarsgard, in a supporting role. Meanwhile, Alexander has appeared in tentpoles such as Battleship and The Giver, and he will star as Tarzan in Warner’s 2016 film. Assuming that the latter is a success, WB may want to reteam with Skarsgard on a DCEU film. Why not Green Arrow?
Skarsgard has the blonde, rugged good looks that are perfect for Oliver Queen. Also, the actor is 38 right now, and he will be somewhere in his 40s – at the earliest – by the time they bring Green Arrow to the big screen. So, he would be a great choice for an older, more seasoned Ollie. And he has some experience with action movies, making him more qualified for this role.
#2 – Ewan McGregor
Ewan McGregor had been my top choice to play Green Arrow for years. He is a terrific actor, he has plenty of franchise experience after playing Star Wars‘ Obi-Wan Kenobi, and he rocks a goatee wonderfully. (Just look at that image above and tell me that it doesn’t scream Oliver Queen.) Also, at 44, he would be a flawless pick for a seasoned Arrow who has been battling crime in Star City for many years.
However, while McGregor’s age could be a blessing, it could also be a bit of a curse. At this age, the actor may not be interested in committing to a multi-film contract that a role such as Green Arrow would require. Of course, that didn’t stop 43-year-old Ben Affleck from signing on to play Batman in at least five movies. So, this could easily be worked out if McGregor is a fan of the character and/or scripts.
Also, McGregor doesn’t have a busy schedule for the foreseeable future. His only tentpole is Disney’s Beauty and the Beast in 2017, while there are persistent rumors of him returning as Obi-Wan in at least one more Star Wars movie. So, he could easily fit a role like Green Arrow into his schedule. And quite frankly, he would do an amazing job portraying this character.
#1 – Garrett Hedlund
Finally, we have my personal top choice for the role of Green Arrow – although, this may be tied with Ewan McGregor. Garrett Hedlund has franchise experience after Eragon and Tron: Legacy, while he appears in the Warner tentpole Pan later this year. He also had a memorable performance in Unbroken. Hedlund is a great actor who should get his hands on a superhero role. And he would be a very ideal fit for Green Arrow.
At 30, Hedlund is at a perfect age to play Oliver Queen. Not too young or inexperienced, but not too old or seasoned. He is likable enough to play the celebrity persona of Queen, while he has the chops to play the Emerald Archer side of the character. Also, his beard looks exactly how I’d picture a Green Arrow goatee to look in live action.
As a bonus, Hedlund has a clear schedule after 2016, so he can easily make room for a big comic book movie role such as this. Ultimately, the actor is an excellent pick to play Oliver Queen in the DC Extended Universe. Fingers crossed that he, along with the other actors on this list, would at least be considered for this role.
Honorable Mentions: Matt Damon, Josh Holloway, Jake Gyllenhaal, Leonardo DiCaprio
Which actor would you like to see play Green Arrow in the DC Extended Universe?
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