Holy Shucks, Batman! After Ben Affleck lamented long-time sidekick Robin’s death even before the first frame of his upcoming film, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, we were left to wonder. Will the Dynamic Duo finally come to an end? Revealing the major spoiler in an interview last week, Affleck said, “[Batman is] bitterly disappointed … that he’s lost this guy who fought by his side. That character’s death must have been devastating to him, and he’s suffered. We get the sense that he’s suffered a lot of devastating losses before this movie even starts.”
However, all is not lost. Robin’s death in Batman v Superman is faithful to Frank Miller’s 1986 graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns. Batman v Superman director Zack Snyder has said the text will be a key influence on his movie — which means a new female Robin may not be out of the question. In the comic book, after Batman loses former boy wonder Jason Todd — killed by The Joker in an earlier episode — he takes on a new female Robin, Carrie Kelley.
Casting a new female Robin is an exciting prospect in the traditionally male-centric field of DC and Marvel action heroes — though thankfully, female-fronted TV superhero shows like Supergirl and Jessica Jones are recent correctives. With Gal Gadot already wrapped up in the upcoming Wonder Woman movie I believe the most promising actresses in Hollywood to bring something fierce and fresh to the role of a new female Robin would be:
Although she’s been concentrating on more “serious” roles of late, we still haven’t forgotten Ronin as the astonishingly perfect teenage assassin in Hanna. I don’t know about y’all, but besides her preternatural looks — which could be a plus in playing a fantasy figure — Ronin has already convincingly portrayed a 16-year-old raised in the Finnish arctic wilderness, uniquely trained by her ex-CIA father to outsmart, hunt, and kill men (and women) twice her size. As Robin, Ronin might end up teaching Batman a thing or two.
Chloe Grace Moretz
She played the perfect sidekick as Hit Girl in Kick Ass 2, and more recently, played the protagonist kicking alien butt in The Fifth Wave. But whatever her roles may be, Moretz always manages to bring her own personal brand of down-to-earth humor and wicked sass. Affleck can be funny, but Moretz can be funnier.
Despite her petite frame, Portman is no stranger to ultraviolence on screen. As a preteen she dodged bullets in gritty gangster flick Leon, and as an adult in V for Vendetta, she pulled a Britney by shaving her head, and transformed into a vehement terrorist. More recently, she play a gritty rifle-wielding frontierswoman who stands her ground against an outlaw gang in Jane Got a Gun. Need I say more?
Although she’s little more than eye candy in TV shows like New Girl and Transparent, Clemons was clearly the most dope aspect of Dope, a stylish hip-hop indie prominently featuring an all African-American cast. Strong, smart, and opinionated as lesbian Diggy, Clemons fits in with the guys without succumbing to tomboy stereotypes or sacrificing her individuality. Paired with Affleck, I can imagine a new Batman-Robin partnership like never before. It would also be nice to see some much-needed diversity in Hollywood.
Known for being one of the youngest actresses to ever win an Oscar, as well as for her role as the mutant Rogue since the inception of the X-Men film franchise, Paquin is a natural for the role of Robin. In real life, she’s also made it clear on Twitter that she would be interested in portraying a “Badass Rogue”, instead of a “Shy teen Rogue.” So playing Robin might be the bolder action role that she’s been waiting for.
Liu has already co-starred in all the Charlie’s Angels movies, so her ability to quick-change costumes, kick major ass, and deliver witty one-liners with ease and class has been proven. If the inveterate actress manages to escape Hollywood’s legacy of ageism — although it’s worth pointing out that Affleck, who will star as Batman, is also in his forties — Liu will be one very few minority actresses who have a shot at this role (see Kiersey Clemons, above).
Not only is Lyonne immediately identifiable because of her distinctly kooky presence, but her gravelly New York accent and tough, sardonic attitude — showcased to the hilt as prison inmate in Orange is the New Black — is incredibly refreshing to find in a Hollywood actress. Lyonne also has the rare gift of comic timing, which would keep things with Affleck (whose performances can be somewhat monotonous) humming along.