15 Actors Who Turned Down Superhero Roles In The MCU And DCEU

Today we live in a world of comic book movies and they have proven to dominate the box office as well as earn a place with critics. In 2019, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ broke every box office record and became one of the highest grossing movies of all time just weeks into its release.


These movies have proven that superhero movies can be well written and action-packed. Today it is every actor’s dream to get a role in one of these movies but what about those actors who turned down roles? Yes, there have been many actors who were offered roles in these franchises but turned them down.

1Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix will be making his entrance into the DCEU playing one of the most iconic villains in the DC universe, the Joker. This will be the Oscar-nominated actor’s first role in a superhero movie but this could’ve happened earlier. Marvel had been trying to get Phoenix to play one of their heroes for a long time. He was first offered the role of Bruce Banner but it went to Mark Ruffalo and then Stephen Strange which went to Benedict Cumberbatch.

Joaquin Phoenix   

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2Tom Cruise

Robert Downey Jr. may seem to embody Tony Stark but h almost lost the role and his redemption to Tom Cruise! Cruise was set to play Iron Man and even produce the movie. But Marvel got the rights back only in 2005, by which time, Cruise had lost interest. Then they chose washed-up star Robert Downey Jr. and the rest is history.

Tom Cruise

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3Dougray Scott

‘X-Men’ was truly the pioneer of superhero movies and the forerunner of MCU and DCEU. The 2000 movie originally considered Dougray Scott to play Wolverine. But Scott was busy with Tom Cruise’s ‘MI2’ and it was later revealed that Scott had been in a motorcycle accident.  Then the director chose a lesser known Australian actor called Hugh Jackman and the rest is history.

Dougray Scott

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4Jon Hamm

‘Green Lantern’ may have been an epic fail but Ryan Reynolds redeemed himself with ‘Deadpool’. However, Ryan was not the original choice to play Hal Jordan in Green Lantern. The studio chased down Jon Hamm pretty hard and tried to convince him to play the role but Hamm wasn’t interested because he did not care for such movies much. He dodged a bullet on that one.

Jon Hamm

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5Will Smith

Among the many actors who were considered to play Man of Steel in ‘Superman Returns’ was Will Smith! He clearly stated that he did not want to play a white superhero. He had already done Jim West and regretted it. He did not want to upset fans. Smith played Hancock and then Deadshot in ‘Suicide Squad’.

Will Smith

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