Casting The Expendables 3 - Our Dream Team
We get our thinking caps on and pick a few names to add to the next action ensemble.
With Sly Stallone rounding up the lads (and lass) again for The Expendables 2 this week, we got to thinking about our dream line-up for The Expendables 3. With the news this week that Nicolas Cage, Harrison Ford and Clint Eastwood are at various stages of talks, we take a look at a few other icons we’d love to see join the cast for the third instalment of what is becoming one of our favourite guilty pleasures. So, having got our thinking caps on and whittled down our initial shortlist down, here, in no particular order, are our picks. Let us know in the comments below who you'd want to see appear, and before you ask, yes - John Travolta was on the shortlist as the team's new pilot.
Continuing the series’ trend of casting alumni of Stallone’s back catalogue, Mr. T was last seen presenting World’s Craziest Fools on BBC3. While this is a key example of the entertainment equation of shit TV + Mr. T = decent TV, we can’t help but think that B.A Baracus himself is a little wasted in the role. Instantly recognisable, and a genuinely fun presence in anything he appears in, we would love to see this happen.
They call him Machete. He knows the score, gets the women, and kills the bad guys. Nobody in cinema looks as downright intimidating as Trejo in full flow, and we’ve seen over Robert Rodriguez's film history the fun he can be when put in the right role. Machete was an absolute blast, and we can see the hulking Mexican star being the perfect addition to the roster.
Moving to a more modern star now, with breakout critical smash The Raid earning rave reviews across the board, much has been made of the diminutive lead. A real screen presence in addition to being a deadly practitioner of brutal martial art Silat, Uwais would bring high-energy athleticism to the cast, and we would literally part with every penny we have to see Iko and Jet Li tear through a group of goons together.
Georges St. Pierre
Not an experienced actor, “Rush” is one of the best fighters on the MMA circuit right now. A popular figure amongst fans, including GSP would have the bonus effect of giving Randy Couture something more to do – the two titans of UFC would make for gripping screen rivals. Charismatic enough to slot into a hero or villain role, he may be a left-field choice but we think GSP would be an intriguing one.
While we’re on the subject of MMA, the star of underrated action flick Haywire is another charismatic athlete with genuine leading presence. We’ve seen the first female Expendable this time around with Nan Yu’s Maggie, and we think we’ve picked the perfect choice for the second right here.
Another 80’s icon, Kurt Russell is beloved of a generation of genre fans thanks to playing one of the coolest men ever committed to celluloid, Snake Plissken. Aside from Escape from New York, Russell also has form working with Stallone in the fun buddy cop flick Tango and Cash. Perhaps not the most original choice, but throwing together an ensemble of genre legends and missing out the star of The Thing and Big Trouble in Little China seems like a big miss to us.
Another slightly obvious choice, The Rock is making a welcome return to the action roles he was born for, moving away from light family comedy and exploiting his sheer physical presence and comic timing to be a potentially great lead. The People’s Champ has more than enough charisma to stand out in an already crowded line-up, and we’ll be very surprised if his name doesn’t come up more and more as the sequel shapes up.
A name we’re surprised hasn’t been mentioned more often in respect of these films, as Brian Mills in the Taken films, Neeson has shown just how his particular set of skills would add to the team. Reborn as a Hollywood tough guy, Neeson would bring gravitas and cool to the ensemble. We would really love it if this happened, as the actor seems to fit the bill just right.
Having worked with both Stallone and Schwarzenegger back in the day, here’s another iconic presence that would add real fun and nostalgia value to proceedings. As Apollo Creed in Rocky and Dillon in Predator, Weathers proved himself as a great foil for the two stars. We’re willing Sly to pick up the phone as we write this.
Bill Paxton/Michael Biehn
How cool would it be to see the two 80’s cult icons given an appearance as old war buddies – perhaps a two man sniper team, or a pilot and co-pilot? Appearing together numerous times, Biehn and Paxton are fine actors in their own rights, but having the two reunited on screen for a film like this may be too much for us to bear. Both men are amongst the most popular actors here at ScreenGeek towers, and if the pair could channel their Aliens roles we could be looking at some of the most popular characters on The Expendables 3’s roster.
Whoever is in charge of casting for the sequel really isn’t doing their job properly if they don’t consider Michael Ironside as the villain. A full on cult icon, the man who provided memorable antagonist performances across the 80’s and 90’s would be an amazing choice. Do we dare to dream of a Nicolas Cage/ Ironside villain pairing? As Richter in Total Recall, the actor has form of working with Schwartzenegger, and if the next film were to include a fight between him and Arnie on a moving elevator, we’d be in geek heaven.