News broke last week that Joss Whedon is in talks with Warner Bros. to write and direct a Batgirl solo outing for the DC Extended Universe. Since then speculation has been running wild with media sites running casts and fans posting dream castings about which actress could potentially be cast in the title role.
It’ll be interesting to see what kind of version of Batgirl we will get on the big screen. Will it be the rookie crime fighter taken under Batman’s wing? Or will it be a crime fighting veteran looking out over the streets of Gotham? Here I’ll run through a list of actresses that could potentially be for consideration to play the role of Barbara Gordon (we’re all presuming it will be that character on the big screen) in the solo outing for the Batgirl film.
Once the news of a Batgirl film was on the cards at Warner Bros. it wasn’t too long that the rumour mill began to mention Lindsey Morgan’s name for the project. A few weeks before it was mentioned that Joss Whedon was in talks to write and direct Batgirl, Lindsey Morgan took to social media to announce that a new project was on the horizon that she was ecstatic about. Since the Batgirl news broke, she’s retweeted it as well as an article on could she possibly be cast in the lead role and liked multiple tweets from referring to her being cast in the role. Morgan has been doing well for herself as one of the strong female characters on CW network’s The 100 playing Raven Reyes and while she’s been killing it on there, you wonder whether or not the studio will give Morgan the opportunity to audition for the role or will they attempt to go for the so-called ‘film names’ only?
Chloë Grace Moretz
It’s been seven years since Chloë Grace Moretz had her breakout role in Matthew Vaughn’s Kick-Ass and while she’s appeared in many films since then, it’s still surprising to hear that she’s just turned twenty this year. It almost feels by default Moretz name will be mentioned on multiple fan casting articles due to having experience of being in a comic book film and the process that comes with it while being potentially the right age to play the character.
Gina Rodriguez has been making a name for herself in the last few years on the big and small screen. Currently she’s the lead in CW network’s Jane The Virgin in which she earned a Golden Globe win for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical. On the big screen she impressed in Peter Berg’s Deepwater Horizon and has a couple of films coming out in the year, with Alex Garland’s Ex Machina followup Annihilation, Timothy Reckart’s The Star and Fox Animation’s Ferdinand. It’s worth mentioning Rodriguez’s name into the mix as last year when asked by a fan on twitter if she could be any superhero, who would it be and her response was simple….Batgirl. She’s an actresses that has the ability to work balance the line of dramatic moments with the comedy which fits into the mould of Whedon’s structure of his work, the only question marks that would hang over her is the ability to work in the fight sequences and also is she too old for the role (Ben Affleck is in his 44, while Rodriguez is 32)? It will all depend on what age bracket the studio is aiming at for the role, late teens/early 20’s or actresses near/in their 30’s.
Mary Elizabeth Winstead
I’ve been a fan of Mary Elizabeth Winstead’s performances for quite some time, from Scott Pilgrim vs The World to Smashed to The Thing to the criminally underrated television series BrainDead. Thankfully Winstead has appeared on everyone’s radars again with her performance in last years 10 Cloverfield Lane and will be appearing as a series regular in the upcoming third season of FX’s critically acclaimed series Fargo. Winstead has performed in almost every genre there is on the big screen and has the ability to shine in her roles, even if the films are a bit of a disappointment (again, see The Thing, the 2011 version that was thought to be a remake but happened to be a prequel). She’s currently not got much coming up other than the Fargo series and a short film and honestly she’s too talented to not be considered for the role.
When it comes to casting, Warner Bros. usually mixes it up with Oscar-calibre actors with so-called up-and-comers, as evidence with the cast of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad. Right now, Elle Fanning is a hot name in Hollywood with her performances in Trumbo, The Neon Demon, 20th Century Women and Ben Affleck’s Live By Night. By association with Affleck, her name might be mentioned in terms of the Batgirl project and while there’s no denying she’s a very good, expressive actress, she has a couple of films to shoot in the next few years and not only is it a scheduling issue, it remains to be seen whether she’s the right age bracket for the role as she’s only eighteen.
Speaking of young-sought after talents, Saoirse Ronan is a name that has been around for over a decade and has managed to earn to Oscar nominations in that time. Not bad for a twenty-three-year-old. Ronan is mainly known for working on the smaller scales, ranging from How I Live Now to Brooklyn, to young-adult film adaptations of City of Ember and The Host. She even developed her physical acting chops in 2011’s Hanna. Batgirl will be an interest role for Ronan to take in a big, mainstream film though it’s only if the actress is willing to take on such a role if the material interests her.
Potentially the most unlikely suggestion for the lead role, however Imogen Poots has proven to be a fine actresses in her own right over the last decade. She first appeared onto my radar with V For Vendetta, then brokeout most notably with her performance in 28 Weeks Later. Even though she’s been in films that some wouldn’t consider to be good (e.g. Need For Speed, That Awkward Moment), she’s often the bright spark in those films and works well in drama and comedic roles. She gave a memorable performance in last years Green Room, proving that she is a forced to be reckoned with in the film and could potentially be a good fit for the role of Batgirl.
It seems that if you come to Hollywood from Downton Abbey, chances are you’ll soon be catching your mainstream break. Dan Stevens eventually got there with Beauty and the Beast after his performances in The Guest and A Walk Among The Tombstones. Right now Lily James is in a similar position appearing in Cinderella and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Currently Baby Driver and Darkest Hour are on the film schedule for this year, meaning with a few projects after that her star could shine brighter to put her into contention for playing the role of Batgirl. She’s definitely got the acting ability and if you’ve caught her in PPZ you can see that she could fit well on the physical side of things as well as fit into Whedon’s style of comedy amongst the action sequences.
Hailee Steinfeld has come along way since appearing in The Coen Brothers True Grit back in 2010, having high profile roles in Ender’s Game, 3 Days To Kill, The Homesman, the Pitch Perfect sequels and most recently The Edge of Seventeen. Considering her age, Steinfeld has played a variety of roles ranging from dramatic to comedic to musical and has an Oscar nomination to her name. If they’re going for an early twenties Barbara Gordon that’s starting out as a crime fighter, Hailee Steinfeld could be a perfect fit for the role.
If Warner Bros. will be moving forward for a veteran crime fighting Batgirl, one actress I would consider to have the part would be Sarah Snook. If we’re going by a Barbara Gordon near her 30’s I think Snook fits the bill perfectly. She impressed me in 2014’s Predestination and was surprised to find out I already seen her before in These Final Hours and I’ve heard good things about her performance in The Dressmaker. She’s not quite had the big studio break I think she deserves and won’t be on many peoples radar, but Snook definitely has acting ability to fit the bill, it remains to be seen on the physical front how she would fare.
Jane Levy is an actress that feels very predictable a choice but it’s with good reason. She’s got the looks to play Barbara Gordon, had previous roles in which her character had to go through physical challenges in Evil Dead and Don’t Breathe, as well as proving she can work well in a comedic environment as she played the lead in television series Suburgatory. Like I said however, it seems to obvious a choice and sometimes the fan favourite doesn’t get cast in the lead role.
If Warner Bros. is aiming for an up-and-comer to be cast in the lead role, then Anya Taylor-Joy will have to be a strong contender to play the role of Barbara Gordon. She has impressed me alot with her performances in the last eighteen months with The Witch, Morgan, Barry and most recently Split. It’s her most recent performance in Split that was the most high-profile role she had and it isn’t a surprise that she’s set to receive a number of offers for projects. The issue for this role however is that Anya Taylor-Joy has been rumoured to be a part of the New Mutants project which is set in the X-Men universe alongside Maisie Williams though it’s never been officially confirmed.
In terms of talent to play a veteran Batgirl, my top choice will be Tatiana Maslany. You only have to look at her performances as multiple clones with distinct personalities on the criminally underwatched Orphan Black which is airing its fifth and final season in the summer and her performance in the series has earned her a Golden Globe nomination. While she’s had supporting roles on the big screen in Woman In Gold and The Vow, Maslany looks set to raise her profile higher later in the year as she stars alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in Boston Marathon bombing drama Stronger. While she might not be everyone’s top choice for the role (I’ve left of Emma Stone at this rate for a reason), Tatiana Maslany has proven she’s an absolute chameleon and if cast in the role she can easily win over audiences on the big screen.
Who would you like to see cast as Batgirl? Anyone that I missed out on that is worthy to be considered for the role? Put your casting choice in the comments below.