Comic book characters have to be one of the most fun roles for an actor to take on. It not only gives them the chance to portray some of their biggest heroes from childhood, but also allows them to reach out to the diehard fans of the property. However, this kind of role doesn't come without its share of responsibilities. An actor must look cool in a costume, put themselves into the mind of a fictional character, and make this all look convincing.
It's not for everyone, as it usually takes an actor outside of their comfort zone. They're also usually the most scrutinized roles an actor can take on, as it usually comes followed with a massive fan base. Those who take on these coveted parts will realize quickly that they haven't signed on for just any ordinary movie role, but an opportunity to portray a legacy.
In the past, there have been a number of fumbles on Hollywood's end in terms of casting for comic book characters. There are for sure a number of politics that go into this process, but box office numbers usually speak for themselves... along with the critics. Here are 12 actors that portrayed some of the biggest flops in comic book movie history.
12 James Franco as Harry Osborn in the Spider-Man franchise
Movie fans rarely enjoy when a comedic actor signs on for a serious role. This goes double for serious comic book roles. It takes the viewer out of the film's tone and usually hinders the more experienced actor's performance.
11 Eric Bana as Bruce Banner in Hulk
“HULK SMASH” didn't seem to be present in this Ang Lee adaptation of Marvel's titular green giant. Moviegoers must have been fairly disappointed when they arrived in theaters to see a brooding and depressed Bruce Banner who transformed into a comical CG rendition of his better half (which can be attributed to the time period's technology).
10 Nicolas Cage as Johnny Blaze in Ghost Rider
Hollywood has trusted Nicolas Cage to portray many different kinds of characters, however we believe it best that we draw the line at undead comic book characters.
9 Brandon Routh as Superman in Superman Returns
To be fair, attempting to follow up an act as coveted as the late Christopher Reeves is pretty much close to impossible, but that still doesn't excuse this actor's bland rendition. Brandon Routh's portrayal almost seemed like it was meant to bring no spirit to the Man of Steel at all.
8 Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan in Green Lantern
We're pretty sure after the recent Deadpool trailer, we can all agree that Ryan Reynolds looks a lot better in red and black rather than green. While there are some actors that should never play superheroes ever, it's fair to say that some just shouldn't play certain ones.
7 Keanu Reeves as Constantine in Constantine
Who better than the actor that brought us Neo to portray a slick-talking paranormal investigator that uses his skills in the dark arts to fight the forces of Hell on Earth? Matt Ryan apparently, but that conversation is for a different list.
6 Jessica Alba as Sue Storm/The Invisible Woman in Fantastic Four
A pretty face may serve to get moviegoers in the theaters, however it may not get them to stay. Fans of the Fantastic Four franchise and unfamiliar viewers alike were unimpressed with this actress's take of the titular Invisible Woman, yet after the recent rebooted film, we're sure fans wish the whole franchise did a disappearing act.
5 Arnold Schwarzenegger as Mr. Freeze in Batman & Robin
This movie committed an insurmountable amount of mistakes in general, but casting The Terminator as Dr. Freeze had to be somewhere near the top. Actors such as Arnold Schwarzenegger are one of the many victims to typecasting, and for good reason!
4 Ben Affleck as Daredevil in Daredevil
Actors like Ben Affleck took a rocky road to his point of success, and let's just refer to this movie as one huge pothole. In fact, the actor has probably only been forgiven for this dismal performance based on the fact that he has proved himself to be a stellar performer prior.
3 Halle Berry as Catwoman in Catwoman
Why not cast an Academy Award winning actress as Catwoman in her solo film? What's the worst that could happen?
2 George Clooney as Batman in Batman and Robin
Every man in the world may have wanted to be Batman at one time or another, but no man wants to bear the shame of being the one to nearly destroy the franchise. We just hope this movie wasn't anyone's first introduction to the beloved character.
While the acclaimed actor has apologized for the abysmal performance, we're all still in shock as to the studio giving the green light for this portrayal. Perhaps the name Clooney as Bruce Wayne appeared better on paper.
1 Topher Grace as Eddie Brock/Venom in Spider-Man 3
After years and years of awaiting Spider-Man's most recognized villain in a live-action movie, and under that black symbiote we get... Topher Grace? It's the equivalent of opening a huge present at Christmas to only receive socks.
Grace may not be a bad actor and in his own right is fairly talented, but there very well may have been a hundred or so available actors that could have been a better choice. In the comics, Eddie Brock is depicted as bodybuilder and a pretty intimidating dude. Grace merely only served as a watered down version of the fearsome supervillain, which also served to bring down the movie as a whole.
Sources: heyuguys.com, fandango.com
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