People Tell Me I Look Like Han Solo.
Thursday, February 25, 2010
  Captain America casting talk
I’ve covered the development of the new Spider-Man movie here recently, and touched on the Thor movie due next summer from Marvel. But there’s another huge superhero movie coming from Marvel in summer 2011, and that’s The First Avenger: Captain America. The movie starts preproduction March 1 in London, and director Joe Johnston has said he wanted to have his lead in place by then. Given that it’s late February, there’s been a surge in casting news, with a leaked list of the final candidates Marvel’s looking at to play the Star-Spangled Avenger. It’s . . . weird.

The most well-known name on the list (Marvel and Johnston apparently are looking for a lesser-known lead to surround with more recognizable faces in supporting roles, similar to Thor) is probably John Krasinski of The Office. Also on the list is Chace Crawford from Gossip Girl, Garrett Hedlund from the upcoming Tron Legacy, Scott Porter from Friday Night Lights, Mike Vogel from Cloverfield, Patrick Flueger from Brothers and Michael Cassidy from TV’s Privileged.

For whatever my opinion is worth, most of these choices seem bland (a big chunk of these actors are on shows I don't watch, like Gossip Girl and Friday Night Lights, so I can’t judge them on much beyond their looks, and I didn’t even know there was a show called Privileged), and one is downright bizarre (Jim from The Office as Cap? WTF?). Now, I really like Krasinski; I’m a fan of The Office and I loved his work in the wonderful Away We Go, but he simply doesn’t have the dramatic heft and seriousness needed to play Captain America, the quintessential leader of men. There are other roles in Marvel’s movie universe I think Krasinski would work quite well in (he would make a great Dr. Henry Pym in The Avengers, a brilliant but troubled scientist who creates a serum that allows him to grow into the Godzilla-sized Giant Man), but I just can’t see him as Captain America. Who knows, the comic community lost its collective mind when Tim Burton cast Michael Keaton as Batman in the late ‘80s, and he’s still, for my money, the best Batman we’ve had in the movies, so if Krasinski does indeed get the nod to wear Cap’s red, white and blue tights, maybe he’ll prove everyone wrong like Keaton did in 1989.

The Captain America movie will apparently be mostly a period piece set during the Second World War (which I’m personally not a fan of, but I get the importance of that era to establish the character). I recently saw Johnston’s update of The Wolfman, and it’s a fun, violent monster movie, the kind they don’t make anymore. Johnston’s a very talented filmmaker, and I look forward to seeing what he does with a character like Captain America, and what that film will mean to Marvel’s movie universe.

But . . . Jim? Really?

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