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Superman Legacy adds Nathan Fillion as DC’s most annoying Green Lantern ever

Hawkgirl and Mister Terrific have also been cast in the James Gunn movie

A comic panel featuring Green Lantern (Guy Gardner version) is next to a red carpet photograph of the actor Nathan Fillion. Image: Kevin Maguire/DC Comics | Photo: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic via Getty
Oli Welsh is senior editor, U.K., providing news, analysis, and criticism of film, TV, and games. He has been covering the business & culture of video games for two decades.

Nathan Fillion will play Guy Gardner, an obnoxious Green Lantern with a terrible haircut, in Superman Legacy, the movie that will reboot both the beloved superhero and the DC Universe on film.

Fillion’s casting was one of a trio of deep-cut heroes confirmed for the movie that DC Studios co-chair James Gunn is writing and directing himself. According to Vanity Fair’s report, the others are Isabela Merced as Hawkgirl and Edi Gathegi as Mister Terrific. The three actors join David Corenswet as Superman and Rachel Brosnahan as Lois Lane.

Fillion is a fan-favorite actor best known for his starring roles in the Joss Whedon sci-fi series Firefly and long-running mystery show Castle. He’s worked with Gunn many times before, appearing in the director’s Slither, Super, The Suicide Squad, and Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3. Coincidentally, he has played another Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, in multiple animated projects.

Merced, who played Dora the Explorer in the 2019 movie Dora and the Lost City of Gold, plays the valkyrie-like winged warrior Hawkgirl. Gathegi, best known as Laurent in the Twilight films, will play Mister Terrific, a genius inventor who controls floating T-sphere weapons.

While not the first or even second name most people associate with Green Lantern, Guy Gardner enjoyed notoriety in the 1980s and ’90s for his selfishness, temper, and bad attitude, even as he joined the Justice League. Some later takes on the character softened him somewhat; it’s not known how much of a jerk Gunn intends him to be in the film, although the Vanity Fair piece describes him as “somewhat less than heroic.”

Asked on Threads whether Guy Gardner would sport his traditionally ugly hairdo in Superman Legacy, Gunn joked, “Giving my old pal Nate a bowl cut might have been my primary reason for casting him [crying laughing emoji].” (Gunn, who famously loves to post, seems to be favoring Meta’s budding platform over Twitter for engaging with fans at the moment.)

Gunn confirmed that all three actors will play their roles across the DC Universe — with Fillion’s Gardner presumably joining Hal Jordan and John Stewart in the TV show Lanterns. But he also moved to reassure fans that his love of comics marginalia, wacky characters, and world-building wouldn’t overwhelm the classic Superman story he wants to tell. “The primary story most definitely revolves around Superman and Lois,” he said, and noted that Hawkgirl, Mister Terrific, and Gardner “fit the story I’m telling. Story always comes first.”

Separately on Tuesday, Gunn noted that Superman Legacy will open in exactly two years’ time, on July 11, 2025. “I haven’t been more excited about a project in forever… and this cast, slowly coming together… holy cow…” he said.

Gunn also confirmed that Xolo Mariduena, star of next month’s Blue Beetle, will be one of a “handful” of actors carrying their roles forward from current DC projects into the new DCU being shaped by him and his DC Studios co-chair Peter Safran.