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Days of Cyclops Past: James Marsden Rumored to be on the Shortlist for Green Lantern Casting

One report indicates a veteran superhero actor could well be in for the role.

James Marsden in 'Westworld'. [Credit: HBO]

Excitement is building for Green Lantern Corps, a movie that promises to give us not one but two Green Lanterns in what's been teased as 'Lethal Weapon in space'. In terms of casting the most famous Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, fans are tossing around names like Tom Cruise, Joel McHale, Armie Hammer, Jake Gyllenhaal, and even Ryan Reynolds! But one report indicates a veteran superhero actor could well be in for the role...

Meet James Marsden

A seasoned actor, James Marsden made his superhero debut in 2000's X-Men, where he was cast as Cyclops. He played the role through the first X-Men trilogy, but it's not really viewed as his best work; he was only really given a chance to show his acting skills in the last film, when Jean Grey's resurrection brought the repressed Cyclops's emotions to the surface. Unfortunately for Marsden, that was also the scene where his character was killed off!

The problem, you see, was that — like Bryan Singer himself — Marsden had been drawn to another project: Superman Returns. This was really Marsden's breakout role, as he played Lois Lane's fiance, who had to deal with the return of the Man of Steel - and the fact his fiancée was in love with Superman! He was soon taking on major roles in films like Hairspray and Enchanted.

A very different James Marsden in 'Enchanted'. [Credit: Disney]

Westworld has given Marsden's career another boost. Marsden played Teddy Flood, a major figure in the sci-fi drama, and right now the sun is shining on all things Westworld. Superhero fans may not have been impressed with Marsden's performance in X-Men, but in the years since, he's proven himself to have real star caliber. Personally, I think he'd play a great Hal Jordan.

How Likely is This?

Hal Jordan. [Credit: DC Comics]

Warner Bros. is undoubtedly considering a whole range of options for the role of Hal Jordan, one of the two stars of Green Lantern Corps. Trying to confirm the initial reports about the casting shortlist from The Wrap, We Got This Covered reached out to sources inside Warner Bros. - and they named James Marsden.

"I’ve heard one more name, too. Ever since Westworld Marsden has been pretty hot around here. They’ve discussed him for Hal as well."

Now, it's worth noting that this is one unconfirmed report, and that according to this, Marsden's name is only being "discussed". In truth, Warner Bros. will only be at the first stage of casting right now — throwing out names to see which ones fit. What's more, the studio won't just be considering actors in isolation; Green Lantern Corps has two stars, not just the one, and the dynamic between these two actors is what will really sell the role.

Green Lantern John Stewart. [Credit: DC Comics]

This is where I think Marsden shines. He's proven that he can build strong rapport with his co-stars — Superman Returns, Enchanted and Westworld all demonstrated that. His star is on the ascendant after Westworld, and he'd pretty much be a perfect fit for this kind of partnership movie.

Of course, right now this is only an interesting rumor. In my view, James Marsden is easily due for a return to the superhero genre; although his experience with the X-Men franchise wasn't the best, he's an actor of far greater caliber than that role demonstrates. He proved that on Westworld, and I for one hope he gets the chance to prove it as Hal Jordan as well!

(Source: We Got This Covered)

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