The DC Universe will begin anew under James Gunn, with 2025’s Superman: Legacy rebooting the DC movie franchise and cutting things off from the DC Extended Universe (aka the Snyderverse) that began in 2013. Given some of the controversial and less than successful elements in the former movies, it would seem that DC as a whole has a somewhat dodgy reputation. Nevertheless, that hasn’t stopped several actors from being interested in where the shared universe property is going.
Two major celebrities have recently come out as being interested in portraying iconic DC characters. One of these is even an actress from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, signaling that DC truly could become the next hot shared universe. Here’s why the building interest in the new DCU is a definite sign of good things to come.
A Guardians of the Galaxy Actress Wants to Play a Major Batman Villain
On film, Karen Gillan has become most well-known for playing Nebula in Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the Galaxy films. The third entry in the series is seemingly the end for the franchise, but things may only just be getting started for Gillan as far as superhero movies go. Gillan recently expressed interest in playing Poison Ivy, the arboreal Batman villain Poison Ivy in the rebooted DC Universe, and it’d be a fitting role beyond just a similar shade of hair. Gillan’s previous role as Nebula showcases that she can play cold yet three-dimensional antagonists, which is something that Poison Ivy needs to truly erase the stain of Batman & Robin.
Another self-cast is the humorous actor Ben Schwartz, who’s wanting to be in the running to play the similarly silly Plastic Man. Schwartz actually does look like Plastic Man quite a bit, and his rising star, like Gillan’s own, can similarly be a benefit when bringing him onto the big screen. For a while, the idea of Plastic Man showing up on the big screen seemed almost as laughable as the comical hero’s antics. With James Gunn in charge, however, it’s definitely a possibility now more than ever. In fact, he may be why so many are now looking toward the DCU with interest.
James Gunn’s DCU Reboot Has Attracted the Interest of Major Talent
The DC Universe reboot idea was initially controversial, especially due to it involving the end of Henry Cavill’s tenure as Superman. Nevertheless, it’s attracted top talent behind the scenes, with directors such as James Mangold being involved with various projects. On top of that, James Gunn is running the show, and he’s had success at Marvel Studios and in Hollywood in general. He’s since developed a veritable rolodex of talent that he’s worked with, all of whom seem to enjoy making films with the director and DC Studios’ creative lead. It’s this rapport and Gunn’s past successes that are likely drawing the attention of those who might not otherwise want to be a part of the cinematic DC Universe.
Obviously, Gillan worked for Gunn as Nebula in the MCU. Schwartz’s interest in Plastic Man is probably inspired by the bold new direction that Gunn is taking the DCU in by embracing more obscure characters and embracing the comic books. For as much as Zack Snyder has his fans, the DC universe he birthed simply didn’t create that kind of confidence, especially after its initial entries. Gunn is already changing that, and it highlights how iconic and legendary many DC characters are.
Plastic Man may not be a household name, but he’s still a pillar of the DC Universe who helps to define its more classical scope. This is why actors like Ben Schwarz are already putting their hats in the ring to portray these heroes. As long as the DCU gets off to a solid start, they’ll have the chance to play them. Even if they don’t don the costumes these characters use, it would seem that Gunn’s involvement is changing the reputation of DC already.