In this edition of the casting couch, we’ll take a look at one of my favorite characters – Clint Barton AKA Hawkeye! Ol’ Clint is a property Marvel has been optioning for the last few years, but so far has nothing really concrete lined up in terms of SOLO output for. However, with his popularity in a distinct incline and Jeremy Renner stepping into his shoes for Marvel’s upcoming silver screen Avengers adaptation, I figured now would be the time to take a stab at speculating what such a solo flick might look like, who would be in it and what a good storyline might be.
Click below for the digs!
Jeremy Renner as Clint Barton/Hawkeye
When it was announced that Renner would be stepping into Clint’s shoes, I didn’t really have an opinion either way on it. I guess he looked the part, but I honestly didn’t know much of his work to really judge and briefly thought about re-casting him for this article. Then I FINALLY saw The Hurt Locker and it became clear as day: Jeremy Renner IS Hawkeye. The bravado, the sheer bravery, the almost childlike curiosity in the face of extreme potential for death? That is Clint Barton, period.
You can’t have a Hawkeye movie without Mockingbird, not only because she’s the love interest for whom Clint will always pine, but also because her status as a SHIELD Agent creates a perfect means to bring Clint into the established SHIELD-run Marvel Movie Universe. Wilde’s a good pick for this one since she can definitely pull off the sassy, brainy scientist type (See: House) and I’d bet my hat she can pull off a little acrobatic spy action as well. While some remain unconvinced of her as a blonde, the above pic really is a dead ringer for Bobbi, so if it works it works.
If anyone can pull off “suave con-artist with extreme hand-to-hand combat skills in a lead villain role”, it is definitely Tom Hardy. Look no further than his wonderfully daring performance in Inception and you’ll see why this one works. The man that came very close to turning young Clint Barton into a villain (and then later becomes redeemed himself) needs to be suave, somewhat mysterious, undeniably educated (can’t be crafty if you ain’t smart) yet intimidating enough for a Frenchman with a love of the color purple. Hardy fits the bill like a glove.
Traditionally, the man who taught Clint Barton how to shoot and then betrayed him to pursue villainous endeavors has been portrayed like a mammoth character, usually twice Barton’s size (though whether that size is mostly due to muscle or fat varied from appearance to appearance.) I’m going with muscle for this one and picking Eli Roth since, honestly, did you SEE him in Inglorious Basterds? The Bear Jew. Nothing else really need be said on this one.
Admittedly not the biggest part in the flick, and their major story beat is getting shot by Hawkeye, but you still need someone to carry the familiar connection and no one knows how to be a gruff, slightly failed brother than Casey Affleck. Plus, casting a perennial younger brother into an older brother role (which I definitely think he could pull off, physically, next to Renner) could get an interesting performance out of him.Continued below
While Mockingbird may be the belle he’s most traditionally attached to, Hawkeye’s first belle was the Black Widow (back when she was a villain, but we’ll make a few allowances for current Marvel movie continuity.) While we’re not getting them together, having Widow appear and guide Clint to his destiny would be an appropriate nod to all continuities. Now, I’ll give Scarlett Johanson some credit: she can play random, bodaciously hot spy chick pretty well, but what she gave us in Iron Man 2 (and, sadly, what we’ll get in Avengers and lord knows what else) was NOT the Black Widow. For one (and this one is painfully obvious), the girl ain’t RUSSIAN. She wasn’t even trying to be either…shit, she didn’t even hit the Atlantic ocean with that full on American drawl she was rocking in that flick. No, too too white bread…and since this is my casting couch, I’m recasting the part and giving it to Franka Potente. Most easily recognizable as the start of Lola Rennt (or Run Lola Run to you simps), she definitely embodies the European seductive edge a good Natalia Romanova needs to embody on the silver screen.
However, one recasting that is 100% not necessary is the man that vouched for Hawkeye’s credibility and sponsored him for the Avengers. Nothing broke here, no need to fix. Carry on, Robby.