Jason Statham takes action movies very seriously. They are his bread and butter, so he has to, but still, Statham's recent comments to I 400 Cali on Marvel movies make it clear that he has no time for green screens. Like many old school action stars, Statham does his own stunts. In the world of superhero movies, a lot of the high flying action is achieved thanks to CGI. In defense of Marvel (and all of the other people making superhero movies), achieving the larger and life look and feel of a massive battle between heroes would be next to impossible without a little help from technology.
I do admire Statham's commitment to his craft. I don't always love his movie choices, but the man not only acts, he fights with style. His gritty approach to action is refreshing (even if it does bring out my inner worrywart), as is his candor. The ironic part is Statham would be amazing as a hero, villain, or vigilante. There are so many Marvel characters that he could rock, but I am guessing he and Marvel are just not meant to be since he told I 400 Cali, "I could take my grandma and put her in a cape, and they'll put her on a green screen, and they'll have stunt doubles come in and do all the action."
OK, so Statham is definitely not doing Marvel, but if he did, he could bring the following characters to life with ease.
The Punisher is hardcore. Driven to hunt down bad guys after his family is murdered, Punisher never pulls any punches— kind of like Statham. He is known for resorting to extreme methods to go after criminals, and he favors hand to hand combat and gun play. He's definitely not Marvel's typical hero, but his grit would suit Statham perfectly.
Nick Blood is doing an amazing job playing Lance on Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but if Marvel ever wanted to portray the older, more grizzled version of Lance who is the director of S.T.R.I.K.E., Statham would be a good choice. Lance is supposed to be the British Nick Fury in many ways, and just like Samuel L. Jackson, Statham can be funny and intimidating at the same time.
Look, if Channing Tatum is an acceptable Gambit, then Statham could definitely pull the role off. Gambit is my favorite X-Man thanks to his flirty, wicked charm. Statham has the attitude already, and I'm sure he would love Gambit's weapon of choice: a staff.
Statham tends to go for working man type characters, but the ultra-intelligent Doctor Faustus would let him get in touch with his dark side. The Captain America villain has no superpowers and is actually limited physically, but he has a unique way of getting inside people's minds. It would be a different kind of character for Statham, but one I would love to see him play.
Netflix wanted Statham for the role of Bullseye in Daredevil, but for reasons that seem obvious now, talks fell through. However, Daredevil is a much more physically demanding superhero series with intricate fight scenes. Statham would have fit right into the rough and tumble Hell's Kitchen setting and been amazing as Daredevil's nemesis. It's too bad he has sworn off Marvel because Statham could have serious fun in the world of superheroes and villains as long as he was cast in the right project.
Images: Marvel (3); ABC; 20th Century Fox