Nowadays, it’s hard to find a movie star that has never played some kind of comic book roles. With superhero movies being as popular as they are, there are many actors and actresses who’ve had more than one of them in their resume. Some of them have become household names and most people forget about all the previous comic book roles and movies they might have had.
Today, we present you with nine movie stars who have jumped into spandex more often than anyone else. So without making this introduction any longer, let’s start off with number nine.
9. Adrianne Palicki (4 times)
Bobbi Morse, a.k.a. Mockingbird, is a former agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. and an ex-wife of none other than Lance Hunter. She has an all-black, armored suit and pretty good fighting skills, which come in handy in combat. The character appeared in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Marvel’s Most Wanted short.
Back in 2011 Wonder Woman was close to getting her own TV series with Adrianne in the title role. After one episode, the show wasn’t well received by critics, who called the costume “too trashy and too bad porn-y” and criticized the loss of Wonder Woman’s American symbolism. NBC passed on the project, but the pilot made its way online and those interested can give it a look whenever they wish to. This was the first and the last time Adrianne had the chance to play Wonder Woman.
Just like the Wonder Woman series, Aquaman was also abandoned after the pilot. In this one episode, she played the role of Nadia, a shape-shifting siren who lives in the Atlantis. She killed Atlanna, Aquaman’s mother, and ten years later took a form of a beautiful woman to get close to Arthur and take his life, as well.
Kara / Lindsey Harrison:
Smallville used this character to trick the viewers into thinking that she was Supergirl, Clark’s older cousin. However, Lindsey Harrison was just an innocent girl who went missing in 1989 and just claimed to be a Kryptonian named Kara. It was all a ploy orchestrated by Jor-El.
8. Idris Elba (4 times)
This French mercenary appears in Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance. He is an ally of Ghost Rider and his mission is to protect a boy named Danny Ketch.
Captain William Roque is the secondary antagonist of the film called The Losers, which is based on a Vertigo comic book of the same name.
Idris Elba portrayed this MCU character five times, appearing in the Thor trilogy, while also starring in two Avengers movies: Age of Ultron and Infinity War. Heimdall is an Asgardian, who serves as an all-seeing and all-hearing guardian of the Bifrost Bridge.
James Gunn’s Suicide Squad character:
Idris was originally going to play Deadshot, but according to the sources that plan has changed. It is currently unknown which character Elba is going to play, but he’s going to star in a comic book movie nonetheless, that is why this one counts to his total number of comic book roles.
7. Jeffrey Dean Morgan (4 times)
In the movie The Losers, based on the comic book of the same name, Jeffrey Dean Morgan portrayed the character of Franklin Clay. He was the commander of a Black Ops team that worked for the CIA.
In Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Jeffrey played none other than Bruce Wayne’s father, Thomas. He was only shown during the assassination presented in the opening credits.
Fun fact: the actress who played his wife, Lauren Cohan, was one of his co-stars in the Walking Dead series.
Edward Blake was one of the members of the Watchmen, who had an extensive list of accomplishments, like taking a part in winning the Vietnam War or assassinating JFK. He’s widely considered as an amoral cynic, who doesn’t care much about people. Towards the end of his life, he finds out about a plot which he refers to as a “joke” even he can’t believe anyone would pull.
Negan’s first appearance in the Walking Dead series was popular not only among the fandom, but peaked other people’s interest as well. He’s been a main antagonist for a big chunk of the series, rocking a leather jacket and a barbwire covered baseball bat called Lucille.
6. Michael Jai White (4 times)
Benjamin Turner is a former member of the Suicide Squad, who appeared in the Arrow television series. After being released from the Slabside Maximum Security Prison, Bronze Tiger helped Team Arrow stop the Ninth Circle.
Back in 1997, Michael Jai White portrayed Image Comics’ most popular comic book character – Spawn. His real name is Al Simmons and he was an assassin who got murdered and made a deal with the devil. In exchange for seeing his wife, he had to return to Earth as Spawn and kill Jason Wynn.
In the Dark Knight movie, Michael Jai White plays a mob boss, who has a clown problem. He orders to kill the psychopath named Joker, but little did he know the Joker had a card up his sleeve as well!
This character is not a stranger to any Mortal Kombat fan. Jax is a detective who works alongside Sonya Blade. Michael Jai White portrayed the character twice, in a short film called Mortal Kombat: Rebirth and in a Mortal Kombat: Legacy series. Even though Jax first appeared in a Mortal Kombat video game, he was used in comic books before his live-action debut, so technically, this one counts as one of his comic book roles.
5. Samuel L. Jackson (4 times)
This is without a doubt Samuel L. Jackson’s most famous comic book role. Nick Fury is the former director of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the one behind assembling the Avengers. Samuel came across the character while he was browsing comic books at a store. He saw an Ultimate version of Nick Fury, who looked like him and even said in one of the panels that he would like Samuel L. Jackson to play him in a movie. After that Samuel’s agent called Marvel and they said that they were making a cinematic universe and they would love if he could play the role. Samuel of course agreed.
This is the main antagonist of the movie Spirit, based on the comic book of the same name. He’s responsible for The Spirit’s resurrection and his life mission in the film is to get his hands on the Blood of Heracles and become a god.
Valentine, a well-known billionaire philanthropist, is very concerned about environmental problems of the world. His plan to remedy that is to kill majority of its population. Samuel portrayed the character twice. The first time he was the main antagonist in Kingsman: The Secret Service, the second one was a brief cameo in the sequel.
Samuel portrayed Chaney in Oldboy, based on the Japanese manga of the same name. He is an antagonist and an owner of the hotel room the main character was imprisoned in.
Also, it’s worth to mention that Samuel L. Jackson portrayed Mr. Glass in M. Night Shayamalan’s Unbreakable and Glass. Elijah Price is hugely inspired by comic book villains, however, it doesn’t count to the total of his comic book roles.
4. Rosario Dawson (4 times)
A member of the Josie and the Pussycats band, in a movie loosely based on a comic book published by Archie Comics.
In Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City movies, Rosario plays one of the women living in Old Town. She’s Dwight McCarthy’s former lover, appearing in the segments involving the character.
Claire Temple, a former nurse, tends to Matt Murdock’s wounds, whenever he is injured during his night-time missions as Daredevil. She has appeared in all of the Netflix MCU series.
She is a central character in Men in Black II, who gets involved with the story because of her connection with the Light of Zartha.
3. Ryan Reynolds (5 times)
Ryan Reynolds appears in the final installment of the Blade trilogy as a member of the Nightstalkers, a vampire hunting group. Hannibal used to be a vampire and a slave of Danica Talos. That, however, changed when he was cured by the serum that appeared in the first Blade movie.
Hal Jordan, perhaps Ryan Reynolds’ most infamous role, was an air force pilot who became Green Lantern. The movie remains as one of the most criticized comic book films to this day. As Ryan Reynolds himself had stated: “After Green Lantern, I was pretty much unhirable.”
It took Ryan a lot of time and a lot of effort to convince Fox to pull the trigger on this movie. It eventually happened and in 2016 Deadpool turned out to be a huge hit. Ryan Reynolds portrayed the Merc with the Mouth himself. Some may not know, though, that this wasn’t his first appearance as Wade Wilson. Back in 2009 Ryan portrayed him in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which was as poorly received as Green Lantern.
In a buddy cop movie R.I.P.D., based on a Dark Horse comic book, Ryan plays a detective killed in the line of duty. After death he meets his soon-to-be partner Roy Pulsipher, portrayed by Jeff Bridges. Together, they serve in the Rest in Peace Department.
It’s hard for big blockbuster movies to keep any information from leaking out, but Deadpool 2 succeeded in surprising fans with Juggernaut. It was Ryan Reynolds himself, who provided the voice for the character.
2. Josh Brolin (6 times)
Thanos is the most powerful and the biggest MCU villain we were introduced to yet. When Thanos got his hands on the power of all the Infinity Stones, using the Infinity Gauntlet, he had wiped out half of the life in the universe from existence. Josh Brolin portrayed the Mad Titan four times.
In Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Josh Brolin dives into the character of Dwight McCarty, previously played by Clive Owen. Here, he works as a private eye, who gets involved in a scheme orchestrated by his former lover, Ava Lord.
Josh Brolin portrays the DC Comics’ gunslinger bounty hunter who goes by the name of Jonah Hex. He has a horrible scar on his face and the power of communicating with the dead.
Little is known about this character’s backstory in Deadpool 2, except for the fact that he was born in an apocalyptic future. Rocking a metal arm and a cool gun, he faces off with Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool a few times in the movie.
Josh Brolin played the young version of Tommy Lee Jones’ character Agent K in the third installment of Men in Black. We see him when Agent J goes back in time to prevent him from getting murdered by an alien.
The main protagonist of the movie Oldboy, based on the Japanese manga of the same name. It’s worth mentioning he shared the spotlight with his MCU co-stars, Elizabeth Olsen, Samuel L. Jackson and Pom Klementieff.
1. Chris Evans
Steve Rogers, a World War II veteran, got his powers from a Super Soldier Serum. He crashed a plane and got himself frozen in ice for over 60 years. After being found and thawed out, he became a member of the Avengers and one of the most popular MCU characters.
Johnny Storm is a younger brother of Susan Storm and a member of Fantastic Four. After a space mission accident, he gets exposed to a cosmic storm radiation that gave him the ability to fly and combust in flames.
In the feature film The Losers, Chris plays Jake Jensen who is a member of the team by the same name. His skillset includes master hacking and disguising abilities.
Nick Gant is a second generation mover, being hunted by an organization called Division, that wants to exploit his powers. As a mover, he possesses the power of telekinesis. Using this ability he can create force fields, deflect things and enhance his punches.
Curtis, the main protagonist of Snowpiercer, is the leader of the group of rebels that fight in a train to survive.
In this one, Chris Evans channels his inner Clint Eastwood. With squinted eyes and a low, gurgling voice, he plays the role of Lucas Lee, a movie star with the biggest amount of swag on the planet. He’s first shown when he’s riding a skateboard onto a movie set accompanied by 20th Century Fox’s intro music.
Cameo in Thor: The Dark World:
Chris Evans has as many comic book roles as Josh Brolin, but his cameo in the Thor: The Dark World gives him the win. In one particular scene Loki annoys Thor and eventually turns himself into Captain America. So technically, Chris Evans played Loki, right?
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Have we missed any appearances? Which comic book roles are your favorite? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to leave a suggestion for the future articles. If we pick your idea, we’ll give you a shout out at the top of that very article, so don’t miss out!