Casting Captain America: Can Channing Tatum Wield the Shield?

by | March 18, 2010 at 3:21 PM | The Movies

They’re still calling it The First Avenger: Captain America, and director Joe Johnston is still looking for the man who will step into the star-spangled regalia and whip a shield at Nazis for God and country. Channing Tatum, who has made a career out of playing either soldiers or dance jockeys, is the current big name being bandied about, although former Human Torch Chris Evans is in the running as well. Other names on the current list include Mike Vogel, Garrett Hedlund and Wilson Bethel.

Of course, none of these were the first choices, because the last frontrunner, John Krasinski of The Office (with experience playing as a dashing young buck of the era with Leatherheads), is no longer in contention, and neither are the other early contenders – Michael Cassidy, Chace Crawford, Scott Porter and Patrick Flueger. Apparently, the fact that the role calls for agreeing to a nine-picture deal is a huge sticking point. True, Samuel L. Jackson has already agreed to nine movies as spymaster Nick Fury, but chances are he’s not going to be shouldering the load of the main star in any of them.

The role of Steve Rogers remains uncast at the moment and will be very difficult to fill – this, after all, is the guy we’re going to have to believe as an unbelievably charismatic and frighteningly competent leader who will eventually be able to take the rampant egos of guys like Tony Stark and The Mighty Norse God Thor and turn them into an effective fighting unit who would follow him into hell. Can Tatum pull off being able to inspire Robert Downey Jr. to do anything? This ain’t no G.I. Joe. That remains to be seen.

There’s also the matter of the good captain’s archnemesis, the Nazi madman known as The Red Skull. Johnston is currently looking at his The Wolfman star Hugo Weaving to take on the role, because nobody can play a villain quite like that man. As for Mr. Rogers’ love interest – one Peggy Carter, American agent aiding the French resistance during World War II – there are a handful of women being looked over, including Keira Knightley (no stranger to period pieces), another Wolfman star Emily Blunt (perhaps to make up for the fact that she wasn’t able to play the Black Widow in Iron Man 2) and Alice Eve, the “hard 10″ of She’s Out Of My League.

No matter who they cast, the fans of one of the most enduring and beloved comic book characters of all time will be sent into a tizzy, but they’ll give it a chance to be awesome. Check out the last attempt at a Captain America movie below.