It’s telling how scores of times there are fans outraged at a casting and how it ‘can never work.” Michael Keaton as Batman, Chris Evans as Captain America, Chris Pratt as Star-Lord, and more have beaten fan expectations to work. A few castings don’t work out, but the success rate is better than the failures. Even though some actors work well in their roles, fans still like to imagine someone else in the part as everyone has their favorites.
That’s led to scores of artists imagining different actors or actresses in various comic book roles. From the big guns of the MCU and DCU to some secondary heroes, the options are endless. Even when the casting seems perfect, there are those who contend someone else would be better. Here are just 20 major superhero fan “recastings” better than what we got to show how fans love to argue who was better for a role.
20 Alexander Skarsgard as Aquaman
Jason Moama has done a fantastic job finally erasing the image of Aquaman as a joke. Yet some still feel his early arc of “beer-swilling fun guy” doesn’t quite fit the character. They’d much rather agree with matrixpath’s stunning artwork of Alexander Skarsgard in the role.
He’s more like the comic book version with lighter hair. and the True Blood star could be believable pulling off the action. He’d also be more like the serious and regal figure to show an Aquaman who's just as tough, but even hotter for the ladies.
19 Morena Baccarin as the Wasp
Fans love to imagine so many “could have been” castings as the real deal. Morena Baccarin had been a major candidate for the Wasp in Ant-Man (back when Janet was going to be the modern lead) and would have fit well. She’s the same age as Evangeline Lilly, loved for roles such as Firefly and Gotham, and could have brought a tough determination to the part. This image also shows she’d have fit well in the suit to take off nicely as the Wasp.
18 Jaimie Alexander as Wonder Woman
It may sound crazy to cast anyone else as Wonder Woman considering how terrific Gal Gadot is in the part, yet Jaimie Alexander was a serious candidate for the role as well and some would argue she’d have been better. The actress is known for playing Sif in the Thor movies which means she can be completely believable as a warrior goddess. Her TV show Blindspot has her doing a lot of stunts as well and proves she could capture the warmth of Diana. In many ways, Alexander could have been just as wonderful in the role.
17 Josh Brolin as Batman
He’s already played Thanos, Jonah Hex, and Cable. So why should casting Josh Brolin as Batman be much of a stretch? The actor is known for his incredibly tough demeanor and his raspy voice alone is absolutely perfect for the part. He could be a more edgy Bruce Wayne yet totally sell the brawling and even the detective work. Many would have preferred him over Ben Affleck in the part and it would allow Brolin to add another big name to his comic book resume.
16 Ryan Gosling as the Flash
Right now, plans for a big-screen Flash movie are a bit stalled. An issue is that the TV show with Grant Gustin is doing a great job with the speedster. That’s a contrast to Ezra Miller’s version being a bit nervous and unsure of himself which doesn’t fit the Fastest Man Alive. This image has Ryan Gosling in the role and he would be a good pick. He can have the laid-back manner of the Flash with some of the joking, while still selling the serious action. If they can recast Batman, the Flash might be next.
15 Katheryn Winnick as Black Canary
Arrow has had no less than three characters as the Black Canary, each of which seemed a bit less skilled than the comic book version. Jurnee Smollett-Bell is going to play the role in Birds of Prey and seems to have a different outfit than the comics. Fans had believed Katheryn Winnick was a major contender for the part and even hinted she’d be playing the role. The Vikings star could easily pull off the action scenes and this art shows she’d look great in the classic costume.
14 Vin Diesel as Black Bolt
The Inhumans has been the MCU’s biggest misfire. It was going to be a big screen movie but later shifted to a flop TV show. Maybe it would have worked as a film, especially with the casting of Vin Diesel as Black Bolt. The king of the Inhumans has a voice so powerful that a single word can destroy a mountain. Thus, producers wouldn’t worry about Diesel’s voice and would instead let his powerful presence sell the part. It could have made the Inhumans a great property instead of a joke.
13 John Krasinski as Mr. Fantastic
It’s sad how Marvel’s First Family have suffered in the movies. Ioan Gruffudd was rough as Reed Richards in the 2005 Fantastic Four movie yet still far better than Miles Teller in the 2015 disaster. With buzz building around the MCU finally bringing the characters in, John Krasinski has been the major candidate for the part. The actor/director has the charm and can easily sell the smarts of Reed while handling the action to make the role truly fantastic.
12 Matt Bomer as Superman
The casting of Superman has always been tricky as few can pull off not only the iconic hero but the mild-mannered Clark Kent. Christopher Reeve did both, but so many others have faltered such as Brandon Routh and Henry Cavill. Matt Bomer has been a serious fan favorite to take on the role as he’s well liked for White Collar and his various film roles. His performance as Negative Man in Doom Patrol also shows he has the acting chops to pull it off, so no wonder Bomer tops lists of who should be the next Man of Steel.
11 Kristen Bell as Harley Quinn
Margot Robbie has won over many fans with her performance as Harley Quinn. She was the best part of Suicide Squad and is ready to kick it up a notch with the Birds of Prey film. Yet there are still fans maintaining Kristen Bell would have been terrific in the role as well. The actress is loved for her work on Veronica Mars, Frozen, and The Good Place as well as her wild sense of humor. There’s also how Bell has talked constantly of how she’d love to play the part in some way and could have made the nutty jester even more fun to watch.
10 Emily Blunt as the Black Widow
One of the biggest “what if” castings of the MCU stems from how Emily Blunt was offered the role of the Black Widow but turned it down. While Scarlett Johansson has been great as Natasha, it’s possible Blunt could have been even better. Besides looking terrific in the suit, Blunt could have brought more gravitas to the dramatic scenes of Widow dealing with her bloody past and her relationships. That would have allowed her fate in Endgame to mean so much more. Blunt not getting the role remains a big miss for the MCU.
9 Katee Sackhoff as Captain Marvel
For every fan who enjoyed Brie Larson as Carol Danvers, someone else disliked it. While a great actress, the Oscar winner did have issues selling Carol as a tough pilot and heroine. Which is why so many would have preferred Katee Sackhoff in the role. The Battlestar Galactica vet could have been a great Carol from the cocky attitude to the flying and given the role much strength. Scores of fanart have pushed that for years with many contenting Starbuck as Captain Marvel should have been a no-brainer.
8 Jessica Biel as Hawkgirl
The problem with Hawkman and Hawkgirl is that the characters have one of the most convoluted backstories in comic book history. Legends of Tomorrow found that out as Ciara Renee’s performance in the role failed to click and the character was written out after the first season. However, if a big-screen version comes, Farrou imagines a terrific Jessica Biel in the role. The actress has proven her acting chops with movies like Blade Trinity and could pull off the costume. Biel could make the character soar.
7 Meghan Ory as Huntress
The Huntress has long been a popular character as a former mob princess now fighting for justice. Arrow had Jessica DeGouw briefly in the role and did a fair job of it but never got the chance to show it off more. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is set to play the part in the upcoming Birds of Prey film, but this art by Farrrou does a great job casting Meghan Ory in the role. The actress is best known as Ruby/Red Riding Hood on Once Upon a Time and this shows she could pull off that costume nicely.
6 Lily Collins as Scarlet Witch
Elizabeth Olsen just doesn’t seem to click right as the Scarlet Witch. She lacks some of the gravitas of the comic book Wanda and doesn’t have the edge needed for some grand magic user. Thus, some would prefer seeing Olsen’s friend, Lily Collins, in the role. The actress starred in The Mortal Instruments where she handled a world of CGI magic and action. She has taken on several dramatic roles too. This image shows she’d have brought more toughness to the part and been very notable as a hotter Witch.
5 Lupita Nyong’o as Storm
Halle Berry is a very good actress but her casting as Storm in the X-Men movies always felt off. She just didn’t seem to capture the near regal power the character should have and Alexandra Shipp also faltered as a younger Storm. Lupita Nyong’o is already connected to the MCU via Black Panther, but this art shows she’d have been a terrific Storm. The Oscar winner has proven she has the grit for the part and actually being from Africa means she can get the accent right and be a believable weather goddess.
4 Jensen Ackles as Hawkeye
Jensen Ackles had been a contender for the role of Hawkeye, but had to bow out due to his role on the TV show Supernatural. While Jeremy Renner was good, Ackles would have been much more like the comic book Hawkeye with his sardonic humor. He’d also be able to pull off the stunts and archery in a more believable manner. Maybe having a younger Hawkeye would have changed the role (such as no family) but Ackles would have been a better fit for the wisecracking archer.
3 Alexandra Daddario as Rogue
One of the biggest character changes of the X-Men movies was casting Anna Paquin as Rogue. The character is known for an outgoing attitude and looking very hot while a pre-True Blood Paquin was far quieter and sedate. With buzz growing on the MCU rebooting the X-Men, casting Alexandra Daddario in the part could work. She certainly has the body to fit the role and this art shows she’d look perfect in the suit and the white streak in her hair. All she needs it to pull off the accent and Daddario has it set.
2 Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Ant-Man
While Paul Rudd is good as Scott Lang, his ultra-joking manner does mar the character a bit. That was shown in Endgame as he couldn’t quite pull off moments like Scott reuniting with his now teenage daughter. Joseph Gordon-Levitt had been a candidate for the part and many think he could have done better with it. He could have shown a more sneaky side to Scott as well as the more dramatic beats of his relationship with his family and Hope. Rudd was good, but Gordon-Levitt could have been a better Ant-Man.
1 Nathan Fillion as Green Lantern
This is rather famous in the history of fan recastings. Even Ryan Reynolds has admitted he was a bad choice to play Hal Jordan in 2011’s Green Lantern, which may have contributed to that movie bombing. Many fans had felt Nathan Fillion would have been perfect for the role. The Castle and Firefly star could have brought the humor but also more gravitas to make the role work. Fillion did voice the role for a couple of animated DC movies and fans continue to contend he’d have been a natural in the part.
Sources: Deviantart.com, ign.com, io9.com