James Gunn has always been a filmmaker who likes to keep his friends and most admired talent close to him from project to project. For example, after working with him on Peacemaker, the director called Chukwudi Iwuji the "best actor [he's] ever worked with," leading him to offer him the villainous role of the High Evolutionary in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
One only has to look at the number of actors who appear to both Gunn's DC and Marvel projects to see this trend - Iwuji, Daniela Melchior, Michael Rooker, and Sean Gunn have already crossed the bridge between franchises in the last few years alone.
So, as Gunn now makes the move to DC Studios to lead the next evolution of the superhero franchise, many are wondering how much more talent he will be taking with him this time around.
James Gunn Teases 5 Guardians Actors Coming To DC
Speaking to Empire, DC Studios CEO James Gunn described the cast of his Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy as being "like [his] family," before specifically listing off five names who he thinks he will "probably" end up working with at his new job at the rival superhero powerhouse.
Taking James Gunn's comments into account, here are The Direct's picks for who these five actors could play in Gunn's new DCU:
First Choice: Booster Gold
DC has been trying to bring Booster Gold to screens for years now, and given Gunn's fondness for bringing lesser-known heroes to the forefront, that could finally happen under his leadership. Pratt certainly has the right look and characteristics to pull this one off, with his stardom undoubtedly being something that would boost the character into the spotlight.
Second Choice: Guy Gardner/Green Lantern
Although John Stewart or Hal Jordan will probably end up being the main Green Lantern of the new DCU, there will be plenty of room to get other members of the corps involved. Pratt could easily be seen as the hot-headed ruler-breaker flying around space, even if that is only slightly different from the job he's close to finishing as Star-Lord.
First Choice: Bane
It's perhaps not the most original of fan castings, but there's no denying that the muscle-loaded Dave Bautista might be the best choice going for Bane. The actor himself has even expressed interest in the past and explained how his take would differ from Tom Hardy's The Dark Knight Rises villain.
Second Choice: Hugo Strange
Bautista may have built his reputation as one of the wrestler-turned-actor muscle-heads of Hollywood, but lately, he has really been trying to showcase his range and potential. So, maybe another Batman villain like Hugo Strange may be better to offer him that kind of unique opportunity.
First Choice: Dolphin
Many may not be familiar with the Aquaman-related superhero Dolphin, but she is an Atlantean who was even once a lover of Arthur Curry. If Aquaman does receive a DCU reboot, finding another love interest as opposed to Mera may be smart after the controversy surrounding her current actress Amber Heard.
Second Choice: Lady Shiva
Alternatively, martial arts master Lady Shiva may be a fun one for Klementieff to get more involved in some action compared to her role as Mantis. A common adversary to Batman, Lady Shiva is one of the most skilled combatants in DC, and a character Klementieff would certainly have some fun with.
First Choice: Poison Ivy
If Zoe Saldaña was just a few years younger, she would certainly be among the actresses in consideration for the next Wonder Woman. But alas, fans will likely have to look elsewhere to find her a role in DC. Perhaps it's just the visual similarities to Gamora, but Saldaña could pull off Batman villain Poison Ivy.
Second Choice: Black Canary
But putting aside that option as that look may be a bit too much like Gamora for her liking, perhaps Black Canary may be an option. There was a project in development last year starring Jurnee Smollett's Birds of Prey version, but with the restructuring at DC, it's unclear whether she will make it into the new DCU.
First Choice: Wonder Woman
With James Gunn keen to keep his closest acting colleagues around for the DCU, one has to consider Nebula actress Karen Gillan for the next Wonder Woman. Now that Gal Gadot appears in line to be replaced, the Doctor Who breakout may be right around the perfect age at just 35 while also being on the taller side at 5'11".
Second Choice: Zatanna
Those who have seen Gillan as Doctor Who's Amy Pond will easily be able to see her as the confident and intelligent Zatanna. The magical hero marks yet another character that DC has been trying to get on screen for a long time, but with Gunn beginning his new era of the franchise, perhaps he could be the one to finally get it off the ground.
James Gunn will announce the first projects in his DCU slate this month; all five of the actors listed above will next be seen in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 which hits theaters on May 5.