Casting Call for a Comic Book Movies: Teen Titans

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Posted by Undeadpool (206 posts) - - Show Bio

The Teen Titans originally formed as a team made up almost entirely of sidekicks to have their own adventures separate from their more grown-up guardians. The books were aimed at younger readers, even in a time when almost all comics skewed young, but as the years went by, and the readers grew up, the team began to be alternately called The Titans (which was appropriate since several of the members were in their 20s or even 30s).

However not one of these characters has been introduced into mainstream DC movies, even being left out of most of the animated movies that go direct-to-DVD and Blu-Ray. But that hasn't stopped rampant speculation in Hollywood about bringing the youngest team this side of the Power Pack to the silver screen, and it certainly won't stop me from speculating even MORE wildly about who should take the helm and who should step into the shoes of the team. As a side-note: I chose the cartoon roster for the team not for any particular reason other than if you're going to do an ensemble film, it shouldn't be more than five characters.

Rare footage of Raven actually enjoying something
== TEASER ==

Director

Martin Scorsese

All his pictures look like really upbeat mugshots

This might appear to be an odd choice unless you're up on current events and realize that Mr. Scorsese has just directed and released a children's movie called Hugo to rave reviews. Now I'm not saying Teen Titans needs to be a kid's film, in fact it probably should straddle PG/PG-13, but one of the most difficult things in moviemaking is directing young actors to give vibrant, emotional performances.

The thing that would absolutely kill this movie is a wooden performance from a flat, unemotional cast of late-teen/early-twenty year olds, and if there's one thing that Scorsese has proven over the years, it's his ability to get deep performances out of any caliber of actor. This isn't to say the actors could be just anyone since they'll have Scorsese to lean on, but even great actors can give terrible performances under the right (wrong) circumstances.

Robin

Anton Yelchin

Laugh all you want, in twenty years he'll probably STILL look like this.

Best known for playing Chekov in the new Star Trek, Kyle Reese in the new Terminator and...the kid from Fright Night in the new Fright Night, but he's shown a great capacity for emotional range as well as playing much younger than he actually is (in his mid-20s an dcan easily play high school), so I think he could pull off the Boy Wonder striking out on his own. But that's the other question: which incarnation of Robin would be leading this Titans incarnation?

Canonically it should be Dick Grayson, but he's tied so inexorably to Batman that having him left out of the movies while throwing him in here would be disingenuous. Likewise, Grayson's costume would never make the transition to the big-screen in anything but a parody or a revival of the old 60s Batman (at which point just bite the bullet and bring back Burt Ward, why not?), and to both those ends I think Tim Drake would be the best choice. Obviously he's still tied to Batman, but I'm talking about pre-Identity Crisis when his father was still alive, so Bats hadn't yet become his adoptive parent. Tim's detective skills would also ensure that writers could create conflicts more complex than those that simply need to be punched away.

Starfire

Felicia Day

Try finding a picture of her NOT smiling. Ya can't! And if ya can, I'm not interested.

Something that's easy to lose sight of in the midst of Kori'ander's...questionable costume choice is that underneath it, she's actually a fairly plucky, sprightly and somewhat naive person. To that end, I wanted to avoid casting an obvious "sexpot"-type actress, and go for someone with a little bit more wide-eyed enthusiasm and innocence that was coupled with the ability to exert a commanding presence when needed (her 5'5" frame isn't exactly imposing, but it's still taller than the average woman, for instance). And really, did you SEE The Guild? Wide-eyed enthusiasm is this woman's bread-and-butter. And like the actors below and above, I think she can play much younger than she actually is thanks to the perpetual smile and babyface.

As for versions, I definitely think that this Starfire should be pre-New-52. The orange skin color might look a little silly on-camera (Oompa Loompa comparisons would be unavoidable and show up in every single lazy critic's review), so the best way to handle that would be to steer into it, so to speak. Just own it, don't tip-toe around it, don't pretend like it isn't there, maybe even hvae Beast Boy throw in a straight-up reference to Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I think with an actress like Day, it could be doable.

Beast Boy

Jesse Eisenberg

It ain't easy being green.

From Michael Cera knock-off to legitimate superstar in one role (or maybe two depending on who you ask), Jesse Eisenberg has shown a unique ability to take a fairly well-worn archetype (the stammering, perpetually put-upon, nerd) and add his own twist on it.

Beast Boy, whether you're going by the cartoon or the comic book, has more often than not been the comic relief, but he's rarely ever been so one-dimensional as to be that alone. He's experienced some of the greatest tragedies of the entire team, so casting a comedic actor would be too much of a risk as people need to be able to laugh AND cry with our green friend. In fact that should be the center of his performance: the dizzying highs and wrenching lows.

I'm not saying he needs to go through all that in one movie, it would be disingenuous, but who says only one of these is getting made?

Raven

Mary-Elizabeth Winstead

Azerath-Metreon-ZINTHOS! BAM! New hair-color!

The apple of Scott Pilgrim's eye has more than shown her capacity for sullen, weary performances and that's what makes her absolutely perfect to play the gothic, dour Raven. But unlike Ramona Flowers, Raven's subdued, cynical outlook can be played for laughs as easily as it can be taken seriously and to that end, it needs an actress who can be the "straight-woman" to someone like Beast Boy's off-the-wall antics.

The only person in the room who's not in one the joke and doesn't even really care to be in on it, which is why I chose Winstead. Even just looking at her eyes as Flowers (I keep coming back to that performance because I think it was her most nuanced), she had the look of someone who was trying to be nonchalant about a massive, possibly world-shattering secret and being the daughter of a demon lord...definitely qualifies.

Certainly more than having seven evil exes, even if one of them IS powered by veganism.

Cyborg

Donald Glover

Donald Glover would like to be serious for a moment...about something hilarious, no doubt.

The man who would be Peter Parker (and might be Miles Morales if those photo-ref rumors are true) could bring a certain degree of levity to the tragic Cyborg. Though not known as a jokester in the comics, I'd see the movie cyborg as a bit more like the cartoon version: less self-hating "woe-is-me for my lot in life" and more upbeat and enthusiastic about his second lease on life. He wouldn't have to start that way, having over half of one's body replaced with robotic parts deserves to be both dramatic and traumatic, again not all these changes need to appear in the space of a single movie, I'm casting in the long-term.

Glover has shown a shockingly wide range in both Community and Mystery Team, even though those were primarily comedic roles. And honestly? If I tried hard enough, I could just make this entire movie a Community reunion.

Deathstroke the Terminator

Daniel Craig

I have to end the article now because I'm lost in those eyes.

The latest James Bond can definitely take a sinister turn (check out Layer Cake for proof of this) but even playing the heroic super spy, Craig brought a level of pathos and determination to the normally ultra-suave spy that hadn't been seen since...ever really.

Asking him to play Deathstroke would take SOME doing because I don't like anyone playing a role within their natural age range apparently, Craig is only 43 after all, but gray hair and a gray goatee along with some minor make-up would do the trick just fine from where I'm sitting. More than that, though, he is fully capable of embodying someone who is simultaneously on the bleeding edge of power and about to collapse under the weight of that very power.

Deathstroke can't always be slick and one step ahead, it makes him boring and it makes any victory the Titans get over him seem completely absurd, so Craig would need to show Slade's age, he'd need to juxtapose his brutal action with near-exhaustion when he's not "on," so to speak.

#1 Posted by thanosrules (546 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice choices.

Also, I really like the layout you chose for this post. :)

#2 Posted by Kurrent (14070 posts) - - Show Bio

Craig as Deathstroke is an excellent choice

#3 Posted by JimmyOlsen1 (144 posts) - - Show Bio

Hmmm I would love to watch a Teen Titans movie but I would prefer the "real" Teen Titans like Wally, Garth, Dick and Donna ... or Conner, Cassie, Bart and Tim - but your choices are good ones! :)

#4 Posted by ReVamp (22798 posts) - - Show Bio

I like Craig as Deathstroke.

#5 Edited by NightFang (10274 posts) - - Show Bio

@thanosrules said:

Nice choices. Also, I really like the layout you chose for this post. :)

I think Stephen Lang could make a good Deathstroke.

#6 Posted by Red Rum (357 posts) - - Show Bio

What would be better is if they bring back the Teen Titans animated series.

In the final season, they revived Terra (albeit without her memories and powers), greatly expanded the Titan's roster, introduced the Doom Patrol as possible recurring characters, and brought back Slade (Deathstroke) as a main threat.

What they could do with a new season is more episodes starring the new Titans, such as Kole, Jericho, Red Star, and Pantha, reintroduce more villains from the comics, like Mr. Twister and Cpt. Calamity, and explore the canonical romances between the Titans' members, such as Beast Boy and Raven.

Also, I really liked Ron Perlman as Slade.

#7 Posted by zombietag (1483 posts) - - Show Bio

this all would be amazing

#8 Edited by Outside_85 (10312 posts) - - Show Bio

To be honest, I'd rather have a NTT styled movie and not aim it at kids. I know it's called Teen Titans, but at least make it late teens.

As for the actors; Anton looks like a beat up Frodo in that photo, Winstead I think you picked for the hair...as for Craig as DS, think I'd rather have Viggo Mortensen or Ron Pearlman (plus we get the voice there) or William Hurt.

#9 Posted by KainScion (2969 posts) - - Show Bio

first 3 suck. last 3 AWESOME!!

#10 Posted by radar5 (52 posts) - - Show Bio

I really like your pics. As much as I love Felicia Day, I feel there's probably someone better suited for the role, though your reasoning is good. I haven't seen Scot Pilgrim so I don't know about Mary-Elizabeth Winstead's acting chops. I have another actress in my head but I'm not sure who.

#11 Posted by Outside_85 (10312 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red Rum said:

What would be better is if they bring back the Teen Titans animated series.

In the final season, they revived Terra (albeit without her memories and powers), greatly expanded the Titan's roster, introduced the Doom Patrol as possible recurring characters, and brought back Slade (Deathstroke) as a main threat.

What they could do with a new season is more episodes starring the new Titans, such as Kole, Jericho, Red Star, and Pantha, reintroduce more villains from the comics, like Mr. Twister and Cpt. Calamity, and explore the canonical romances between the Titans' members, such as Beast Boy and Raven.

Also, I really liked Ron Perlman as Slade.

Just a note, Slade only appeared once in the very last episode of season five...and that was a robot, the treat was the Brotherhood. And if they brought back the show, they should keep it in the same form as before where Beastboy was only truly after Terra not Raven.

#12 Posted by Skaddix (3106 posts) - - Show Bio

@JimmyOlsen1 said:

Hmmm I would love to watch a Teen Titans movie but I would prefer the "real" Teen Titans like Wally, Garth, Dick and Donna ... or Conner, Cassie, Bart and Tim - but your choices are good ones! :)

Real Titans? I hate purity tests, still thanks to the cartoon the above is the most famous group.

#13 Edited by Joesoef95 (315 posts) - - Show Bio

I love the casting, especially on Raven and Beast Boy. Spot on. But the director? I just don't a see a legendary director of his caliber to ever direct a comic book movie.

Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, Goodfellas... Teen Titans? :/

And I think Dakota Fanning will make an awesome Terra

#14 Posted by clumsyninja (143 posts) - - Show Bio

Uhhh...Felicia Day, I'll skip that one. Can Nolan north do female voices?

#15 Posted by The Fastest Man Alive (74 posts) - - Show Bio

These are great choices, however Martin Scorsese I cant imagine.

#16 Posted by EdwardWindsor (14340 posts) - - Show Bio

Craig would own deathstroke. A very good choice

#17 Posted by danhimself (22718 posts) - - Show Bio

John Hughes would have been a perfect director

#18 Posted by MANofSHAZAM (17 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm really not a fan of Daniel Craig but I think Anton Yelchin is a really good idea for Robin

#19 Posted by csimon (2110 posts) - - Show Bio

THIS CAST SUCKS

#20 Posted by Wattup (646 posts) - - Show Bio

Donald Glover as Cyborg?! AWESOME! I would have never even considered that.

Must be a way to put Abed in the cast as well.

#21 Posted by The Stegman (26070 posts) - - Show Bio

i think Logan Lerman could make a good young Robin 
 
 

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#22 Posted by shrmntnk62 (252 posts) - - Show Bio

That would be pretty sweet. I love Craig as Deathstroke. But if I could pick any comics movie for Scorses to direct, I think he would do an awesome X-Factor Investigations.

#23 Posted by JePx (30 posts) - - Show Bio

GREAT CHOICES! Holy crap, I like em, I like em. Make this movie. Honestly, make it.

#24 Posted by RedRobin92 (233 posts) - - Show Bio

It's gonna be tough thinking of Donald Glover as anyone else but Childish Gambino.

#25 Posted by Kairan1979 (16926 posts) - - Show Bio

I prefer Smallville version of Cyborg to Donald Glover.

#26 Posted by Chibi-Iroh (381 posts) - - Show Bio

The only one of those choices that I like is Daniel Craig as Deathstroke.

I would have Matthew Vaughn direct it.

Robin would be played by Aaron Johnson

Starfire would be played by either Amber Heard or Isabella Lucas

Raven would be played by Emily Browning

Beast Boy would be played by Jean-Luc Bilodeau

Cyborg would be played by some unknown

I would also cast Taylor Launter as Superboy.

#27 Posted by The Impersonator (5620 posts) - - Show Bio

@Kurrent said:

Craig as Deathstroke is an excellent choice

#28 Posted by moywar700 (2775 posts) - - Show Bio

this is something to look to

#29 Posted by Mbecks14 (2029 posts) - - Show Bio

Felicia Day is definitely NO Starfire. And Yelchin is not really robin material, and Jesse Eisenberg is far too awkward to be Beast Boy.

#30 Posted by GothamBat (643 posts) - - Show Bio

@Chibi-Iroh said:

The only one of those choices that I like is Daniel Craig as Deathstroke.

I would have Matthew Vaughn direct it.

Robin would be played by Aaron Johnson

Starfire would be played by either Amber Heard or Isabella Lucas

Raven would be played by Emily Browning

Beast Boy would be played by Jean-Luc Bilodeau

Cyborg would be played by some unknown

I would also cast Taylor Launter as Superboy.

Agreed. Except maybe Taylor Launter...

#31 Posted by Icarusflies (12513 posts) - - Show Bio

I LOVE your casting choices.

I'd certainly watch this movie.

Moderator
#32 Posted by BlackArmor (6138 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree with Deathstroke nothing more

#33 Posted by buttersdaman000 (10575 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeah....Donald Glover is like 30 years old 
and Taylor Lautner would make a horrible Superboy.......he would make a horrible anything....

#34 Posted by CodeComiX (26 posts) - - Show Bio

Just an honest question here...........Why didn't you choose a teenage cast instead, I didn't look up these actors/actresses, but by the looks of it they aren't teens so it doesn't really make sense for them to be cast (although to be fair hollywood does this all the time). If you had to choose a cast that was CLOSE to the age of the actual characters, give or take 2 years, who would you pick....

I mean, they are called TEEN Titans for a reason, not 20-something titans

#35 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6836 posts) - - Show Bio

I disagree with all the choices except Daniel Craig as Slade Wilson. I think that's brilliant!

#36 Posted by DKing_CiCADA (330 posts) - - Show Bio

If only it was so

#37 Posted by Or35ti (1101 posts) - - Show Bio

Any superhero film where Scorsese calls the shots would be super-duper amazing. I also think Daniel Craig, Jesse Eisenberg and Mary-Elizabeth Winstead are excellent choices for Deathstroke, Beast Boy and Raven

#38 Posted by Bestostero (5590 posts) - - Show Bio

I understand that those are the most recognizable Teen Titans...but I would like to see Donna and Roy involved as well!!!

#39 Posted by KidSupreme (826 posts) - - Show Bio

@csimon: i would not put it so harshly, but I agree with you, I do not like the cast he picked.

But Craig never crossed my mind for deathstroke, but I don't think he would do a very bad job.

#40 Posted by GuruOfFunk (441 posts) - - Show Bio

I like Craig as Deathstroke but hate everyone else, but I could probably handle Anton Yelchin (I'd prefer somebody was cast as Nightwing in a slightly older Titans though). I think Donald Glover would make a better Static but that's my opinion.

#41 Posted by Bluefox170 (387 posts) - - Show Bio

Daniel Craig would actually be an awesome choice for Deathstroke. Stephen Lang would be a great choice as well, no other big names come to mind that fit the description more than those two. I also agree with Donald Glover as Cyborg, though honestly I wouldn't mind seeing him playing ANY role haha.

#42 Edited by The Average Bear (2079 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree with all of these, except I think Emma Stone would make a neat Starfire

EDIT: Dave Franco would be a good Robin or Beast Boy, as well

#43 Posted by BallsMonkey (21 posts) - - Show Bio

...Really?

#44 Posted by Knight Train (112 posts) - - Show Bio

great ideas really, although Scorsese is a long long shot. Couldn't disagree more about Jesse Eisenberg in the part, I think he's a great actor but he has never really played a character as 'cool' as beast boy. I think Aaron Yoo would be fantastic in the role (not to mention make it a little less white), he has proven himself in these kind of roles in Disturbia and that horrible Friday the 13th remake. He would be my choice, loving the Donald Glover choice, perfect.

#45 Posted by Danial79 (2326 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice casting! I could totally see every one of those working. I hope you keep these pieces coming.

#46 Posted by CrimsonTempest (305 posts) - - Show Bio

Dude, this casting is so much win. I would love it if Scorcese gave a stab at this!

#47 Posted by DarkShadows (741 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice casting, though I would put Ellen Page as Raven--Mary-Elizabeth Winstead is also an excellent choice to be Raven.

As long as it is NOT Kristen Stewart, I heard a lot of people saying she could play the part because she's "perfect" for it. Just... no. Kristen Stewart can't act. I would literally throw a tantrum if she got the part.

Ellen Page or Mary-Elizabeth Winstead for the win, those two girls have this cynical, dark, tragic kind of feeling to me.

Back to the topic (and away from my ranting), I am loving the choice of the actor for Deathstroke, perfect!

I would watch this movie, either alone or with friends; however, I would rather watch an animated movie based off of them. I know Judas Contract was suppose to be made into an animated film, but they cancelled it for some reason... well, I hope the idea comes back to the studio.

Again, wonderful casting!

#48 Edited by The Cyan Lantern (227 posts) - - Show Bio

All great choices but I think Josh Hutcherson would make a better Beast Boy. When I think BB, I think a short guy with a bigger than life personality but has a bit of a witty side. I think Josh could deliver and not portray him as too cocky.

#49 Posted by GothamRed (2553 posts) - - Show Bio

love the daniel craig option, the other one's are pretty good too.

#50 Posted by frozenedge (1344 posts) - - Show Bio

Daniel Craig would be an awesome Deathstroke. I can see Mary Elizabeth being Raven but I don't know who anyone could play Beast Boy or Starfire seeing as how they'll both look weird on screen

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