She has played a ’10 tall, blue native from Pandora in Avatar and a green galactic warrior in Guardians of the Galaxy. So, what is next for Zoe Saldana? Perhaps a bluish-green DC character?
Regardless of whatever full-body makeup transformations her next role may or may not require, the 42-year-old actress has proven that playing badass ladies of any species is her bread and butter. Having already established herself as MCU royalty by earning a new audience for Gamora, there are plenty of characters from the pages of DC comics whom she would have (or even could have) had the same effect on.
With that idea in mind, if there was a chance for Zoe Saldana to join the DCEU, who should she play? I have seven characters in mind, the last of which may be a pleasant surprise for some.
The ragtag team Zoe Saldana's Gamora fights with in the MCU is actually one of a few different iterations of Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy team. A similar case of this is the Wildcats, a group of intergalactic warriors first introduced through the eyes of Voodoo, a former exotic dancer who joins them for her psychic abilities, crossbred physiology of warring alien races, and mastery in the traditional magic of her namesake. Her fierce attitude and exceptional capabilities make her one of the most powerful individuals of Jim Lee and Brandon Choi's Wildstorm Universe (formerly an Image property before DC's purchase), and Saldana is usually the most capable person onscreen anyway, so pulling off the character would be effortless.
Rocket (Raquel Ervin)
To reference another notable Guardians of the Galaxy character, Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper and performed on set by Sean Gunn) is, coincidentally, the alias of Raquel Ervin, a much overlooked DC character from Dakota City (Virgil "Static" Hawkins' birthplace) whom Zoe Saldana could breathe some new life into. Rocket, in addition to fighting crime with an "inertia belt" that allows her to absorb kinetic energy, fly, etc., is also a teenage single mother, meaning Saldana's casting would require some tweaking. Regardless, the character would be a great opportunity to introduce social commentary into the DCEU, as her progressive philosophies often cause her to clash with her alien partner, Icon.
Often referenced as the first female, black superhero in DC comics (unless you count another we will mention momentarily) is Bumblebee, an influential character whose backstory has potential for reinvention. S.T.A.R. Labs research engineer Karen Beecher designed her insect-like super suit to pose as a villain for her future husband, the Herald, to defeat in order to help him earn respect with the Teen Titans, whom she would also join before later becoming a member of the Doom Patrol. The DC Universe original series based on that team could be the place on which Bumblebee could make her live action debut and Zoe Saldana has all the right moves to guarantee a worthy portrayal.
Another character who also has fought with the Titans, Doom Patrol, and even the Justice League is Rosabelle Mendez, the only heroic person in the DC Multiverse who truly lives up to the Pantha alias, having been mutated into a cat-like humanoid by the Wildebeest Society. She would later cross over into the dark side, however, when she was posthumously reanimated as a member of the enemy Black Lantern Corps. In other words, this character would be, essentially, a culmination of all that Zoe Saldana is already best known for: intensive makeup transformations, interplanetary conflict, and her Hispanic heritage.
In yet another instance of a character who has undergone more than one iteration, Elizabeth Chapel is the successor to Charles McNider (who had called himself Doctor Mid-Nite), and like her mentor is blind unless in the darkness. This ability helps Doctor Midnight secure a unique advantage over her enemies, using impeccable martial arts skills and smoke out bombs among other tools in battle. Chapel actually received her live action debut on the CW series Stargirl, but if cast in a big screen interpretation for the DCEU, it would give Saldana an opportunity to play perhaps her most dynamic comic book role yet as someone who turns a disability into a strength.
Some people argue that Bumblebee, while being a more traditional costumed crimefighter, is actually the second black, female superhero introduced to DC comics considering the fact that Nubia was introduced three years earlier. The Amazonian warrior was formed from clay by Queen Hippolyta, just like her twin sister, Diana (better known as Wonder Woman), but was kidnapped at an early age and raised to be a threat by the God of War, Ares. An alternate version of Nubia from the original Injustice storyline would see Diana imprisoned, leaving her to assume mantle of Wonder Woman, which would be yet another really cool opportunity for Zoe Saldana to take if Gal Gadot ever wishes to retire the wristbands.
Out of every character from the DC lexicon whom Zoe Saldana would be perfect for, none is more fitting than the one she already played. The overlooked 2010 gem The Losers, also featuring future MCU heavies Chris Evans and Idris Elba, starred the actress in her first comic book role as Aisha al-Fadhil, who becomes a member of a ragtag crew of vengeful ex-CIA operatives. Based on a beloved DC Vertigo title, the film, despite a mixed critical reception and underwhelming box office performance, it does have an audience that once hoped for a sequel, and if it would be possible to bring back all the main players (even four-time DC veteran Jeffrey Dean Morgan), the DCEU could be a nice place for The Losers to call home.
What do you think? Should Zoe Saldana try her hand at a new DC character, should the DCEU consider a revamp of The Losers, or is there no way the actress can top her performance as Gamora? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check back for updates on the Guardians of the Galaxy actress, as well as many more hypothetical comic book movie casting calls, here on CinemaBlend.
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Jason Wiese writes feature stories for CinemaBlend. His occupation results from years dreaming of a filmmaking career, settling on a "professional film fan" career, studying journalism at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO (where he served as Culture Editor for its student-run print and online publications), and a brief stint of reviewing movies for fun. He would later continue that side-hustle of film criticism on TikTok (@wiesewisdom), where he posts videos on a semi-weekly basis. Look for his name in almost any article about Batman.