David Slade Wants Josh Hartnett to Lead His 'Daredevil' Adaptation?

June 18, 2012
Source: Empire

Josh Hartnett / Daredevil

We haven't heard any substantial updates on the forthcoming reboot of Daredevil in over a year. Last March, director David Slade (30 Days of Night, Twilight: Eclipse and Hard Candy) was attached to the project, and a few months later "Fringe" writer and producer Brad Caleb Kane was hired to write the script. Since then development has been stagnant, but now we have a very small thread to hold onto for the future of the Marvel reboot. On Twitter, a fan expressed hope for Slade to get working on Daredevil soon, but it's his mention of a name for the title hero role and Slade's positive reaction that is turning some heads now.

A fan (noticed by Empire) said, "I hope [David Slade] gets back to the Daredevil stuff soon, and I hope, maybe, Josh Hartnett could finally get a Marvel role." Slade merely responded, "You and me both." Now, that's far from a confirmation that Slade wants Hartnett to star, as he could merely just be eager to get to work on Daredevil, but this opens up the discussion as to whether or not Josh Hartnett, who hasn't really been at the top of his game lately, would be right for the role as blind superhero Matt Murdock and his acrobatic crime fighting skills.

Hartnett worked with Slade on 30 Days of Night, and for those keeping score, he also starred in Pearl Harbor with Ben Affleck, who starred in the awful adaptation years back. It's certainly an interesting thought, but you would think Marvel would want a more bankable name for the role. Of course, Chris Hemsworth wasn't well known before taking the lead role in Thor and he was surrounded by bigger names to help sell the film. That could easily happen this time as Hartnett is probably more well known than Hemsworth, but lately he hasn't been in high profile projects and his glory days were nearly 10 years ago.

Is there anyone else who could fill the shoes better than Hartnett? Though he's been faltering at the box office lately, Taylor Kitsch wouldn't be a bad choice, though he might be just a little too young. However, I'm going to venture outside of the normal leading man casting pool and say that "Dexter" star Michael C. Hall would be perfect for Daredevil. He has a subtle haunted nature about him and would be perfect for a character like Matt Murdock. There's a chance Hall might be slightly too old for the role, but Robert Downey Jr. seems to manage just fine as Iron Man. Any other suggestions?

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Matthew Fox

Davinian on Jun 18, 2012


That's a good one!

Chris G on Jun 18, 2012


Matthew Fox and Josh Hartnett are both good picks.

ryderup on Jun 18, 2012


Did you see the pictures of him as the bad guy in Alex Cross? I think he needs a role like this, think he would be good.

HealthyPoison on Jun 18, 2012


We already had a Racer X movie.

Akirakorn on Jun 18, 2012


To be honest, I hope nothing comes of this reboot. I'd much rather the rights revert back to Marvel so they can make the film their way and embed it in the Marvel cinematic universe.

Chris_G on Jun 18, 2012


Thank you. 100x this!

bat0u on Jun 18, 2012


Nooooo. Why are people so terrible at casting Matt Murdock? Lord. Matt is mature and intense and traditionally in his 30s, much more grizzled than Hartnett or Kitsch. They're way too young. Think Michael Fassbender, guys.

equustel on Jun 18, 2012


In other words, yes, I like the idea of Michael C. Hall. :]

equustel on Jun 18, 2012


You do know Josh Hartnett is like 34 right? I'm sure if Hartnett needed to, he could become "Grizzled" for the role of Matt Murdock. It's what actor's do, it's called getting into character.

Rain Spider on Jun 18, 2012


I get that. I still think Hartnett's too baby-faced and soft for the part. Ben Affleck did his best to get into character, bless him, and he looked the part in certain respects... but he was still ultimately miscast. Perhaps I'm being overly picky, but DD has a stronger & more defined personality than most people give him credit for, which is why I'm routinely baffled by some of the names that come up for him. But hey, I'm willing to be proved wrong. Marvel Studios has done a great job of casting their heroes - each one is so true to the spirit of the characters... I really wish DD was back in their hands.

equustel on Jun 18, 2012


I do admit that Ben Affleck was miscast, but at the time he was on a popularity binge with J-lo and I imagine his popularity alone was one of the decisive reasons he landed the part. That seems to be how Hollywood roles these days, by putting popular actors at that time in as many movies as they can. Given the movie alone just had poor writing all over it, it would have been hard for any actor to make DD look good. It would just be best for Fox to give the rights back to Marvel so we can see Crosses of DD and Spiderman or something along that line. Fox basically just uses movies like DD and Fantastic 4 to make a quick buck, they don't care how crappy the movies turn out.

Rain Spider on Jun 18, 2012


All u "miscast " people look above from Wiki and see why ur wrong .

Dominic A on Jul 18, 2012


Have you seen Hartnett lately? He lost his baby face a while ago. He may be 33, but there are some miles on that face! He did get into a "roughed up" character in last year's "Bunraku". The film didn't get much press, but he was great in it- Unlike anything he's played before, so maybe Matt Murdock will be an interesting challenge.

Traceym1991 on Jun 18, 2012


Cool Idea but fassbender had full schedule & Slade trust in Hartnet for lately work

Ehsan Davodi on Jun 18, 2012


Ummm mature and intense? He's had those story lines sure but he's still a wise cracking ass and can have fun. Just look at his book's relaunch and the tone of it. Busts in on a mob wedding, beats up the bad guy, kisses the bride and has fun doing it. More covers of Daredevil have him smiling while flying through the air than scowling like an angry blind batman impersonator.

DaftBot on Jun 18, 2012


Hartnet is substitute for Afleck! In Pearl Harboar and Daredevil either! In that gigantic war flick Hartnet was Better than Afleck in my opinion, so I think he is good choise for this reboot too. Slade work with Hartnet lately and know him very well. But I think David Slade is masterful in Horror Genre. He is very special and unique vision in horror. Hard Candy wasnt horror totally but had some veins too. He is best for R rated movies like Hard Candy & 30 Days of Night(leave twilight3 alone dudes) his movies had heavy atmosphere and stylistic cinematography. This reboot maybe win or lose but I think real Daredevil is David Slade hisself that pick this lately doomed project. Wait for Vilain!

Ehsan Davodi on Jun 18, 2012


Honestly i think that you have a point since they already are a great team why not see these two team up again and make the last daredevil look like a pussy lol

Jeremy Young on Jun 18, 2012


I hope best for them Jeremy

Ehsan Davodi on Jun 18, 2012


Yes please.

Xerxexx on Jun 18, 2012


Be interesting to see if they did a story line on DD refusing membership into the Avengers, like the comics. (I think he later joins if I remember)

Quanah on Jun 18, 2012


same mistake as casting afleck, lame.

Dick Sinister on Jun 18, 2012


I think Hartnett could pull it off. Yes, he's one of those lucky assholes that manage to hold on to their youthful appearance, but he is in his mid 30's and could definitely look rugged and "seasoned" enough to play this role. Affleck already proved that just having a superhero chin isn't enough to convincingly portray a costumed crime fighter. And even though both, Affleck and Hartnett, have that "sensitive guy" puppy-eyed look, I have more faith in Hartnett. I think he's the better actor of the two. Also, I'm getting pretty tired of Fassbender being suggested for every role under the sun lately. Sure, he's undeniably a great actor and I like him a lot, but come on.

SuicidalOptimist on Jun 18, 2012


I totally agree with you on this

Jeremy Young on Jun 18, 2012


Don't be tired dude Antony Quinn play in 160 movie

Ehsan Davodi on Jun 18, 2012


marvel should not get these rights back sorry marvel would not make DD the way it needs to be made marvel studios would make it a family film like every damn marvel film DD needs to be like batman begins

Nelson Ortiz on Jun 18, 2012


actually i dont want them to start a reboot because dardevil movie belongs to fox and not marvel, which is also a reason why Hartnett could be in it because marvel has no say in the movie. Also if they don't do a reboot within a certain time the rights go back to marvel which is why im not excited its is a movie just to keep the rights not because the want a good movie.

mishi on Jun 18, 2012


Michael C. Hall

si1ver on Jun 18, 2012


Guy Pearce. Nuff Said.

Dane Forst on Jun 18, 2012


Great actor, but I'm tired of Bale... I mean brits donning American capes n cowls.

Akirakorn on Jun 18, 2012


Why? He's in his 40s and his last action movie was terrible. He's a great dramatic actor but he's done nothing in his career that says he should play the man with no fear.

DaftBot on Jun 18, 2012


Ben Foster.

Shane on Jun 18, 2012


Um Taylor Kitsch? Over exposed anyone? Casting him as DD would be a poor Gambit...

Akirakorn on Jun 18, 2012


JOSH HARTNETT??!! Oh my freaking pantyhose YES please !!! I know he has been off the radar for quite a while now and just the other day i was watching Pearl Harbour on TV i was thinking, what on earth happened to this hottie?? Black Hawke down anyone?? If anyone can do action and superhero, Josh can. It's just whether he will want the role. Seems like he is the fussy type in picking roles lately. And please... no more Chris Hemsworth.

Whatiswrongwithus on Jun 19, 2012


Thought I would never recommend this guy for a movie but he is perfect for this role. Chris Pine. Dammitt I said it.

The Douche on Jun 19, 2012


Afleck's DD wasn't " Awful " another movie who's Director's Cut greatly helps tho, definitely . I'm not a fan of his , but i thought he nailed the character pretty well . Remember the scene after the bar fight , when he's standing at his basin showing all the scars on his back , and jerking a tooth out of his head . Pretty true to the heightened-sense-but-no-super-powers hero . It introduces Clarke-Duncan as a pretty good Kingpin , and Gardner as Elektra - can hate her movie but not her in either one . And it's the Best Movie Soundtrack I"VE ever heard , it's still on my phone ...

Dominic A on Jul 18, 2012


Totally agree with what you say here.

waynehowarth on Jul 30, 2012

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