12 Actors You Won't Believe Almost Played Iconic Comic Book Characters

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s... Muhammad Ali?!

Warner Bros.

Superhero roles can be the defining moments in an actor’s career; Robert Downey Jnr will never not be Iron Man now. He could keep working until he was 100 and people would still know him best as Tony Stark.

It can be a golden opportunity when it goes well, but of course this isn’t always the case. Jessica Alba’s career was actively harmed by the poor job she did under Tim Story’s terrible direction in Fantastic Four; she was once told not to cry during an emotional scene as it made her look less pretty.

For the most part though, it’s a pretty sweet gig.

Great work if you can get it, but sometimes for one reason or another, actors have the opportunity in the palm of their hands and it just slips away.

Sometimes the size of the contract or the script itself will put actors off, other times they might be the first pick until someone else wows at an audition. Logistics play a part too, with scheduling conflicts and a change of director both often leading to drastic changes to casting.

These 12 stars were once in the running for iconic comic book roles, but unfortunately missed out.


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