Unless you’re living under a rock, you already know Chris McKay announced Warner Bros. has an open casting call out for Dick Grayson/Nightwing for a movie none of us have heard about yet. Now it’s still likely that the role will go to a big time actor, but there’s still that minute chance a no name actor gets it. Personally, I like that idea. Generally speaking, the best actors and actresses for superhero and supervillain roles are people we’ve never heard of yet. They immerse themselves in these roles because they know it’s their big chance at stardom.
Look at Gal Gadot. Never heard of her before Wonder Woman. Michael Fassbender, as far as I know, had only one semi-noticeable role in 300 (he’s the guy who said “then we will fight in the shade” in case you didn’t know). Hugh Jackman was an unknown before he became Wolverine, Chris Evans really only did minor things before the first Fantastic Four, following by his transformation into Cap. And it’s even allowed for the rebirth of some careers, like Robert Downey Jr.
But these actors handled the roles like it was the most important role they’d every get. Truth be told, that’ll probably end up being the case.
Now there are exceptions for successful actors who’re already well established, like Heath Ledger or Ryan Reynolds, but those are rare. If you look at Ben Affleck, people see Ben Affleck acting as Bruce Wayne, not just Bruce Wayne. No name actors don’t require that distinction.
And I will say, having big-time actors take on a character is obviously huge at times, like with Jason Momoa as Aquaman. You need a badass to play him, otherwise no one would give a damn about him.
There are quite a few notable actors being mentioned in connection to the role. Dave Franco and Zac Efron are two that I desperately don’t want to see play Grayson. Franco’s weird. He’s whiny. Not Nightwing material. Efron’s too much of a pretty boy to play Bruce Wayne’s former ward. And I feel like he’s fake. His on-camera persona has blossomed into a d-bag who doesn’t give a damn what anyone else things. Almost like he’s too cool to care, but not in a bad ass way, like in a “I’m cooler than you for no other reason than I said so, so you’re opinion doesn’t matter” kind of way. (Are you getting the point I don’t like Efron, and have dealt with people in real-life that remind me of him on-camera?) Not Grayson-like. Honestly, I wouldn’t either of them to play any superhero that I can think of at this juncture.
I’ve seen Steven Yeun a lot. That’s fine, I guess. I’ll still always see him as Glenn in The Walking Dead. Don’t know that he can pull off an acrobatic fighter. Same sort of thing with Kit Harrington (Game of Thrones, John Snow). I’d give them a chance, but I don’t LOVE the casting.
Part of me wants to see Jared Paladecki (Supernatural, Sam Winchester) get it, especially if Jensen Ackles (Supernatural, Dean Winchester) was the favorite to play Red Hood — he already did it in the Under the Red Hood animated film. Paladecki’s a face people will recognize and played his role well in Supernatural well, but I think he’s still in a position where he won’t be like Affleck as Batman.
Then again, there could be someone none of us have EVER heard of. I’d be fine with that. A big part of me kind of hopes that’s the case to be honest.