Ryan Gosling: Superhero - Rolling Stone
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Ryan Gosling: Superhero

He’s just what the doctor ordered to revive your franchise

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The Internet is abuzz with calls for guy-next-door heartthrob Ryan Gosling to be crowned the next Batman, now that Christian Bale is done with the role, for director Zack Snyder's recently announced Superman-Batman film mash-up. (There are also rumors he's in talks with Disney to appear in the upcoming Star Wars reboot.) Amid the fervor, we couldn't help but imagine what Gosling might look like taking on some other well-known superhero franchises that are seemingly in need of a reboot. Can his super-human hipster-cool star power resurrect these characters?

By Katy Kroll

green lantern gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; Warner Bros. Pictures

‘The Green Lantern’

Remember how Gosling rocked those fancy man-rings in 2011's Crazy, Stupid, Love.? Well, they'd pale in comparison with how awesome he'd look wearing the Green Lantern's power ring. While the 2011 film adaptation of the DC Comics character, starring that other Ryan (Reynolds), limped along at the box office, barely making back its estimated $200 million budget, there are rumors that a sequel is in the works. Distributor Warner Bros. has admitted a major overhaul is in order, and what better way to start than to pass the torch – we mean lantern – to Ryan 2.0.    

the green hornet

James Devaney/WireImage; Columbia Pictures

‘The Green Hornet’

We love Seth Rogen, but most people didn't warm up to him as the Green Hornet in 2011. While the movie did well in the notorious Hollywood graveyard called January, the franchise seems DOA right now. But we still think there's life in this old chap yet ­– if Gosling were to don the green mask. Change protagonist Britt Reid from a wealthy slacker who inherits a print newspaper to a playboy hipster who runs a website and voila! Insta-match-made-in-hornet-heaven.

gosling watchmen comedian

James Devaney/WireImage; DC Entertainment


Like Charlize Theron in Monster and Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler before him, this transformation could be Oscar-worthy for Gosling. OK, that may be a stretch, but since Watchmen isn’t a franchise that immediately comes to mind when someone yells "superhero!," he can probably play with the role of the savage, cynical, almost unlikable (and definitely not pretty) Comedian. It certainly wouldn't be the first time he slummed it in that sense. We're looking at you, Half Nelson and Blue Valentine.

ryan gosling daredevil

James Devaney/WireImage; 20th Century Fox


Now that the rights to Daredevil have reverted back to Marvel after Fox let the franchise rot on a shelf somewhere for the past 10 years, we expect a reboot any day now. Gosling as the blind lawyer-turned-vigilante isn't too far of a stretch – he played a lawyer in 2007's Fracture, and famously took on the role of good Samaritan a few times in New York, bravely breaking up a street fight and valiantly saving a woman from being hit by a taxi. Fun fact: While real-life couple Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner met on the Daredevil set in 2003, Gosling was just shooting his breakout film The Notebook.

fantastic four ryan gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; 20th Century Fox

‘The Fantastic Four’

Perhaps the Fantastic Four franchise, last seen on the big screen in 2007 with Rise of the Silver Surfer, would be a little more appealing if the Thing were easier on the eyes. Blasphemy, you say? Consider this: The massive orange-cobbled Marvel creature has a good sense of humor and deep blue eyes – both attributes that the Gos possesses, too. Plus, the catchphrase "It’s clobberin' time!" could take on a whole new meaning. You can thank us later.

the incredibles ryan gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; Disney/Pixar

‘The Incredibles’

Admit it, this is an amazing idea. Or should we say incredible? Yeah, that's more like it. Voiced by Craig T. Nelson back in 2004, Mr. Incredible won our hearts – and money – in the Disney Pixar animated flick The Incredibles. But for some reason we've yet to see a sequel. All hope isn't lost, though. Director Brad Bird recently said he's interested in resurrecting the superhero family – and in our minds the Herculean dad has slimmed down and reversed the aging process, looking like none other than the Gosling. Alas, in reality, the best we can hope for is that Mr. Incredible is voiced by the actor. (We still love you, Craig T.)

hellboy ryan gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; Universal Studios


Sure, why the Hell not? Since he'll be bulked up for all these other roles anyway, we're confident that Ryan could handle taking on this one, too. The giant red beast has not been seen on the big screen since 2008, and like the Thing, it probably wouldn’t hurt the franchise to reboot and bring in more female fans. (See: the recent box office success of Sex and the City, Bridesmaids and The Heat.) So, see you in Hell, Gosling. At least we hope so.

ghost rider ryan gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; Columbia Pictures

‘Ghost Rider’

Anything's an upgrade here, right? We're sure some people will disagree, but Nicolas Cage just didn’t do the dark Marvel antihero justice. So why not go whole hog and hand Gosling those fiery whips and chains because, as anyone who reads up on the Gosling gossip knows, the guy's already got an affinity for leather and motorcycles. And he proved just what a badass he can be in 2011's Drive. The only problem: those baby blues just might melt Mephistopheles' icy heart.

wonder women gosling

James Devaney/WireImage; Warner Bros/NBC

‘Wonder Woman’

Call it what you want: the coup de grace. The icing on the cake. The cherry on top. If anyone in Hollywood can get this damn project off the ground after numerous false starts, it's Ryan Gosling. Arguably the most beloved and well-known female superhero, Wonder Woman has languished in Hollywood ever since Lynda Carter's iconic TV show went off the air in 1979. Since then, Amazonian warrior princess parts line the streets like roadkill, with countless failed attempts at contemporary TV and film adaptations. In our minds, though, all that's needed is a little costume alteration and a whole lot of Gosling charm.

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