Justice League: Part One has had its main heroes assembled for quite a while, but the last couple months have seen the cast expand even further. Amber Heard was cast as Mera, the future queen of Atlantis, and not long after, J.K. Simmons was added as Commissioner James Gordon. Now the cast has recruited Willem Dafoe onto the blockbuster, but he won’t be the main antagonist like you might assume.
Rather than play a bad guy like he often does in movies, The Hollywood Reporter says that DaFoe will be playing "one of the good guys." They couldn’t provide any details on who this character is, but he will appear in both Justice League: Part One and 2019’s Justice League: Part Two. Dafoe joins Simmons as the second actor from Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies to make the jump from Marvel to DC. So can we expect any other Spider-Man actors to be added alongside these two? Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, maybe they’ll want to join Team DC.
It’s hard to even guess who Willem Dafoe might be playing Justice League: Part One, though we can reasonably assume it won’t be Green Lantern, since Warner Bros likely looking for someone younger. However, if the addition of Mera and Commissioner Gordon are any indication, the movie may be be including supporting characters from most, if not all, of each hero’s personal lives. Assuming that he isn’t an original character, perhaps DaFoe is one of these folks who’s close to one of the Justice Leaguers.
My guess is that he’s playing Dr. T.O. Morrow, a scientist who worked at S.T.A.R. Labs in the New 52. In that security footage from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, we saw Silas Stone at the laboratory repairing his son, Victor, and turning him into Cyborg. Morrow could be one of Silas’ fellow scientists, and together they use S.T.A.R. Labs’ resources to help the Justice League with whatever threat they’re battling. Morrow is also known for creating Red Tornado, so if DaFoe is playing him, this could set up the android superhero’s introduction later on.
As mentioned earlier, Willem Dafoe has previous comic book experience, only from the Marvel side of things. He played Norman Osborn, a.k.a. the villainous Green Goblin, in 2002’s Spider-Man. Norman died at the end of that movie, but DaFoe cameoed in the follow-ups as a hallucination his son Harry saw. This Norman pushed Harry to seek revenge against Peter Parker for his death and inadvertently allowed Harry to discover Norman’s Goblin arsenal in Spider-Man 2, thus leading him to become the New Goblin in Spider-Man 3. Beyond that, Dafoe’s recent roles include playing J.G. Jopling in The Grand Budapest Hotel, Marcus in John Wick and voicing Gill again in Finding Dory.
Justice League: Part One arrives in theaters on November 17, 2017, but for now, feel free to leave your own guesses about who Willem Dafoe is playing in the comments below.