Bradley Cooper, Tom Cruise, Joel McHale, Armie Hammer, James Marsden, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds—it’s easier to list the actors that haven’t been shortlisted to play Hal Jordan at this point.
Admittedly, these reports are coming from The Wrap, rather than a first hand source, so we should take them with a pinch of salt. That said, it’s not hard to see why DC might want to cast a wide net to fill this role.
There are a few names that really don’t make sense on this list, though.
Bradley Cooper, for example, is already connected to Guardians of the Galaxy, and while his face doesn’t appear in the film, DC doesn’t seem thrilled at casting actors who appear anywhere in the MCU.
It might be pettiness, or simply an issue surrounding scheduling conflicts, but it’s hard to imagine Cooper being strongly considered for the gig.
Tom Cruise is a choice that makes sense, in that he’s almost exclusively a science fiction actor anyway (although he might not always be convinced that the movies are fiction, but that’s beside the point).
Joel McHale is a big, fat nope. There’s a face that really isn’t right for the role of Hal Jordan in any way shape or form.
Simply put, Hal Jordan shouldn’t look quite this creepy. It would distract from the movie as a whole, and possibly give children nightmares.
Armie Hammer, meanwhile, has stated that if DC are considering him for the role, they haven’t actually talked to him about it yet. This does suggest that TheWrap’s list might be a little on the dubious side.
James Marsden couldn’t possibly star as Hal Jordan unless the script involves Kilowog stealing his girlfriend—by this point, audiences have been subconsciously primed to expect Marsden to suffer in every movie he appears in.
Jake Gyllenhaal has bigger fish to fry—he’s busy with women’s rights marches in an attempt to fight injustice and fascism. With such noble goals, he’ll probably want to stay as far away from Zack Snyder as is physically possible, in case the mad director tries to murder him as an allegory for Superman or some similar nonsense.
By the point we get to the seventh name on this supposed shortlist, any pretense has basically eroded. Obviously this isn’t actually DC’s top picks for the role—no matter how desperate they get, the company is never ever going to hire Ryan Reynolds for anything again.
Especially not the role of Hal Jordan. The only casting choice that would be more unpopular than Ryan Reynolds would be Donald Trump, and supposedly he’s busy writing a high-concept science fiction series of his own, centering primarily on how white tarpaulin can make 750,000 people invisible during a presidential election.
Of course, DC Entertainment could try something new. They could center the movie around John Stewart, or even better, double the number of female superheroes in the DCEU by using Jessica Cruz as the star of Green Lantern Corps.
But alas, women of color are unlikely to gain any additional representation in comic book movies any time soon.
Not when there are so many white male actors that haven’t been given a chance to play a superhero yet.