2011’s Green Lantern narrated the story of Hal Jordan, who was selected to become the first human member of an intergalactic police force called the Green Lantern Corps. The iconic character was played by actor Ryan Reynolds, but even Reynolds’ charm couldn’t save the movie from being one of the biggest box-office bombs in DC’s history.
It has been confirmed that actor Nathan Fillion will be making an appearance as a brand new Green Lantern, Guy Gardner in James Gunn’s 2025 movie Superman: Legacy. In the past, many famous Hollywood stars have auditioned for the role, but DC had to put this idea on a back-burner for many years. While we wait for Fillion’s Green Lantern, here is a list of 6 actors who almost played Green Lantern on the big screen:
In the late 2000s, Warner Bros. was developing a Justice League movie directed by George Miller titled Justice League: Mortal that featured characters like Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, The Flash, Martian Manhunter, and Green Lantern.
American rapper and actor Common was selected for the role of John Stewart, one of Earth’s Green Lanterns. However, the whole idea was shelved mainly due to the 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America Strike. Common has appeared in many iconic movies like John Wick: Chapter 2, Terminator Salvation, Wanted, and Suicide Squad.
2) Jared Leto
We all know Jared Leto from his iconic performances in many blockbuster hits like Fight Club, American Psycho, and Requiem for a Dream. The casting directors of 2011’s Green Lantern shortlisted Leto alongside Ryan Reynolds for the main role.
Unfortunately, Leto didn’t get the role but a few years later he made his DC debut as Joker in 2016’s Suicide Squad. His performance was not well-received by the fans but that didn’t stop him from exploring the superhero genre again. He made his Marvel debut as Dr. Michael Morbius in 2022’s Morbius, which was another disaster.
3) Corey Reynolds
Many people know Hal Jordan as the primary Green Lantern, however, John Stewart is undoubtedly the most important one. In the early 2000s, actor Corey Reynolds pitched in an idea for a Green Lantern movie focusing on John Stewart, titled, Green Lantern: Birth of a Hero. Corey Reynolds was expected to play the lead role in the film.
The idea was liked by the studios and a release date was also planned, however, for some reason, the project was shelved and fans got the Ryan Reynolds’ 2011 movie instead.
4) Justin Timberlake
With his performance as Sean Parker in 2010’s The Social Network, American singer Justin Timberlake proved that he’s a talented actor as well. The actor reportedly auditioned for the lead role before Reynolds.
5) Jack Black
Actor Jack Black is the last person one would expect to play a major superhero role. In 2004, an action-comedy film was planned in which Abin Surm sends his ring to find a worthy host, but it reaches Jud Plato instead of Hal Jordan. Black was expected to play the role of Plato. The film had a lot of terrible jokes and fortunately, the whole idea was scrapped.
6) Zack Snyder’s Green Lantern, Wayne T. Carr
Technically, actor Wayne T. Carr did appear as John Stewart in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, however, due to the studios’ interference, his scenes were removed from the film. Warner Bros. claimed that they had plans for the character in the future.