Female ‘Expendables’ Confirmed; Big-Name Actresses in Talks

Published 3 years ago by

female expendables Female Expendables Confirmed; Big Name Actresses in Talks

We’re at a turning point in the cultural zeitgeist, concerning the representation of women. Male-dependent damsels like Bella Swan are increasingly frowned upon, in an age where princesses prefer swordplay to swooning over prince charmings. Televised hits Mad Men and Game of Thrones explore patriarchal societies in historical and fantasy context, while Homeland examines feminist ideals in the new century. This is a banner year for blockbusters featuring modern action heroines, thanks to Haywire, The Hunger Games, Snow White and the Huntsman, and Brave.

Thus, there is no time like the present for an Expendables-riff that unites all the armed-and-dangerous babes who’ve graced the silver screen. Director Simon West (Expendables 2) has revealed a desire to incorporate an “Expenda-Belles” team in a future installment, name-dropping such gals as Angelina Jolie (Tomb Raider) and Helen Mirren (RED) as possibilities. However, reports are in that Hollywood has begun the process of assembling a girls-exclusive riff on Expendables that takes place in a separate universe (but maintains the badassery factor).

Expendables 2 Review starring Sylvester Stallone Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger Female Expendables Confirmed; Big Name Actresses in Talks

Sylvester Stallone and Yu Nan in 'The Expendables 2'

Sylvester Stallone’s Expendables celebrates the past exploits of its masculine cast by teaming over-the-hill superstars (Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger) with beefcakes in their prime like Terry Crews and Randy Couture. Expendables 2 (read our review) opens the floodgates wider to include a female screen hero (Yu Nan) and youthful face (Liam Hemsworth) for a second round of ultra-violence and self-camp nods to Americana die-hard cinema. Two years ago, we here at Screen Rant assembled our own dream cast for a feminine-flavored Expendables that brought together definitive badass ladies (Sigourney Weaver, Linda Hamilton) with icons of the past 15 years, in Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez.

Executive producer Adi Shankar is developing an all-woman take on Expendables. Variety says that Shankar will back through his 1984 Private Defense Contractors banner, with newcomer Dutch Southern scripting. Shankar stumbled with the biopic Machine Gun Preacher, but went on to find success with gory machismo flick The Grey and the viral hit Punisher: Dirty Laundry short. He also has violent films both visceral (Dredd) and artistically-satisfying (Killing Them Softly) in the can. Suffice it to say, he brings with him the practical experience and knowledge to ensure an effeminate Expendables is also an impressive one.

lena headey dredd Female Expendables Confirmed; Big Name Actresses in Talks

Will Lena Headey join the 'female Expendables'?

Early negotiations are ongoing with “several prominent actresses affiliated with the action genre” to sign on for Shankar’s (untitled) female Expendables. Celebrities ranging from 1980s and ’90s relics Cynthia Rothrock (Undefeatable) and Brigitte Nielsen (Red Sonja) to actresses Jennifer Garner (Alias) and Lucy Lawless (Xena: Warrior Princess) fit that bill, along with the younger Summer Glau (Firefly) and her Sarah Connor Chronicles costar Lena Headey. Potentials range from Zoe Saldana (Colombiana) to Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) – and far too many others to list here.

Stallone engineered a simple, but satisfactory, excuse for craggly hooligans of the big screen to work under the same roof in Expendables: they are all mercenaries, unified across different nationalities by the desire to reduce cartoonish baddies to mincemeat (and get paid while doing it). The female equivalent could follow suit, without straining credibility more than Sly’s machismo franchise does. Of course, suspension of disbelief will be of little concern to men and women who just want to see some fine gals kick ass (and chew bubblegum, perhaps).

expendables 2 yu nan Female Expendables Confirmed; Big Name Actresses in Talks

Yu Nan as the first (official) female 'Expendable'

Who would you like to see recruited for a female-centric Expendables? Moreover, who would you like to see play the villain in an all-women Expendables? Sound off in the comments section, and who knows – maybe some of the bigwigs around Tinseltown take notice of demand from fans (hey, we can dream, right?).

The Expendables 2 is playing in theaters around the U.S.

Source: Variety, E!Online

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  1. ridiculous…


  2. I’m a woman and yet I still think this is a terrible idea. Why all men and on the other hand why all women? I would have loved for the Expendables 1 or 2 to sprinkle in some more female action stars as heroes or villains but don’t get me wrong I don’t want to watch an entire movie of just women action stars. Just a mix of the two would be nice. Two female action stars would have been cool no matter what side they were on. So my list if I must watch an all female cast is….

    1.Michelle Rodriguez
    2.Helen Mirren
    3.Summer Glau
    4.Zoe Saldana
    5.Sigourney Weaver
    6.Milla Jovovich
    7.Ali Larter
    8.Moon Bloodgood
    9.Eliza Dushku
    10.Lucy Lawless
    11.Kate Beckinsale
    12.Abbie Cornish

  3. Maggie Q that’s all I have to say

  4. Angelina Jolie
    Kate Beckinsale
    Milla Jovovich
    Jennifer Garner
    Jessica Biel

    There can’t be a female expendible movie without any of them. These women have been staring in all successful action movies in past decade. In addition to that I like

    Rhona Mitra
    Kelly Hu
    Kristanna Loken
    Maggie Q
    Cameron Diaz
    Gina Carano

    Rhona Mitra and Diaz proved their abilities in Doomsday and Charle’s Angels. Kristanna, Kelly, Carano and Maggie have very good martial art backgrounds.


  6. Love the idea! My must-have list would be:

    Angelina Jolie
    Milla Jovovich
    Sigourney Weaver
    Michelle Rodriguez
    Linda Hamilton

    There are a good couple dozen more I could throw in, but in my opinion, these 5 are the biggest female action stars in the last 20 years, and any “Expenda-Belles” without them just doesn’t cut it.

    • Aah,I forgot Kate Beckinsale and Zoe Bell!

  7. Bad Gals: Linda Hamilton (but she fights on the side of good til the twist at the end)
    Eliza Dushku
    Lucy Lawless
    Zoe Saldana
    Lucy Liu

    Ass Kickers: Sigourney Weaver as our fearless leader
    Mila Jovavich
    Michelle Rodriguez
    Ali Larter
    Maggie Q
    Kate Beckinsale

  8. Everybody is mentioning lame examples of actors who have been IN action films but who are not action stars themselves.
    The one person who should lead the cast for a female version is Cynthia Rothrock. Period. We need real martial artists in the film, not wannabe action-stars.

    • I would love to see Cynthia Rothrock, but I don’t think she has the acting ability for the role. Admittedly the acting required is not that great but you do have to come across as believable and Rothrock does not. Maybe Karen Shepard, Kajukenbo, Wun Hop Kuen ,US Open Karate Grand Champion; US Black Belt Forms Champion; Black Belt Hall of Fame entry; WKC Gold medalist.

      • Interesting suggestion and I’ll agree with that. Karen Shepard would be a excellent choice. I remember Karen played the “bad girl” role with Rothrock in the film, Righting Wrongs and she was pretty good with that whip chain!

      • Interesting suggestion and I’ll agree with that. Karen Shepard would be an excellent choice. I remember Karen played the “bad girl” role with Rothrock in the film, Righting Wrongs and she was pretty good with that whip chain!

  9. Apart from most of those mentioned above, an excellent choice would be Patricia Tallman. She’s not only a great actress, she’s also a stuntwoman, who’s played stunt double for many of those mentioned, and quite a few who’re not. Her work in The Long Kiss Goodnight in particular was balls to the wall. And more feisty redheads are always welcome!

  10. Given her excellent turns in RED and RED2 I would recommend Dame Helen Mirren. She has proven herself as an action star and I believe she could easily steal the entire movie (since this will obviously be a movie and not a film).

  11. Sorry….I just personally think the idea to me sounds lame.

  12. I vote:
    Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy)
    Lucy Lawless (Xena)
    Angelia Jolie (everything)
    Lori Petty from Tank Girl
    Demi Moore (GI Jane)
    Bridget Fonda (Point of No Return)
    Hillary Swank (Next Karate Kid)
    Sandra Bullock (The Net)
    Chyna WWF
    Gwen Stefani or Shirley Manson
    Lynda Carter (Wonder Woman)
    Chloe Moretz (hit girl)
    Eliza Dushku (True Lies)

  13. Well if you are going to stick with the theme of the Expendables created by Stallone then you have to mix a little of the older women who have done action with new actors. As someone said earlier, there aren’t any action hero women with the box office numbers and longevity in their careers as with the men of Expendables. But if I am picking a few women actors I would like to see included it would be:

    Sigourney Weaver (Alien), Carrie Ann Moss (The Matrix), Michelle Yeoh (Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon), Charlize Theron (Aeon Flux) Demi Moore (G.I Jane), Eliza Dushku (Dollhouse), Maggie Q (Nikita), Kate Beckinsale (Total Recall), Jennifer Garner (Alias), Ziyi Zhang (House of Flying Daggers)

  14. I think iconic roles should obviously be a deciding factor, so Linda Hamilton, Angelina Jolie and Sigourney Weaver are obvious musts for their movie work, as are Sarah Michelle Gellar and Lucy Lawless for their TV work.

    Personally, I’d love to have Shirley Manson in there because I’m a huge Garbage fan, but that’s not really a great reason.

    Milla Jovovich has been doing her thing in Resident Evil movies for a while now, and of course Michelle Rodriguez is utterly essential.

    I’d suggest one of the older actresses take the lead role, it was nice seeing Sly Stallone meet a younger woman and at no point try to bone her in The Expendables, he got to take a more paternal role. I’d be up for Hamilton or Weaver taking on that older, maternal figure role.

    Also, Halle Berry (Die Another Day) and Grace Jones (View To A Kill) might not be terrible people to give cameos to, we could always use more POC actresses in there. Though if you’re gonna kill a character off, please make it someone white. Stick one of the girls from Sucker Punch or Spring Breakers in there, I dunno, but if you stick Halle Berry in there just to die I will personally come to your house and poo through your letterbox, Hollywood.

  15. how about Maggie Q from nikita she beats people up on daily or anna paquin from xmen or emma stone from zombieland

  16. I’ll just put down my list which goes thus:
    1. Angelina Jolie (Lara Croft’s Tomb Raider)
    2. Milla Jovovich (Resident Evil)
    3. Michelle Rodriguez (The Fast and the Furious)
    4. Sigourney Weaver (James Cameron’s Avatar)
    5. Helen Mirren (RED)
    6. Jennifer Garner (Alias)
    7. Michelle Yeoh (Tommorow Never Dies)
    8. Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon)
    9. Charlize Theron (Aeon Flux)
    10. Jessica Alba (Machete)
    11. Summer Glau (The Sarah Connor Chronicles)
    12. Devon Aoiki (Dead or Alive).

    Yup. That’s about it.

  17. Olga Kurkulina! (Mother Russia in Kick-Ass 2)

  18. this will be awesome.. Here are my choices.. Not in any particular order:
    Cynthia Rothrock, Gina Carano, Lucy Liu, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jennifer Garner, Katie Sackoff (Riddick),
    Zhang Ziyi, Michelle Yeoh, Michelle Rodriguez

  19. this will be awesome.. Here are my choices.. Not in any particular order:
    Cynthia Rothrock, Gina Carano, Lucy Liu, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jennifer Garner, Katie Sackoff (Riddick),
    Zhang Ziyi, Michelle Yeoh, Michelle Rodriguez and Karen Shepard..

  20. Milla Jovovich

    Uma Thurman!!!

  21. Buffy
    The Bride

  22. How has no one mentioned Lucy Liu the? The movie doesn’t even work without her. Also Kate Beckinsale, Milla Jovovich, Michelle Rodriguez, Lucy Lawless, Uma Thurman, Carrie Ann Moss, Zhang Ziyi, and Sigourney Weaver

  23. My vote:

    Milla jovovich
    Michelle rodriguez
    Kate beckinsale
    Maggie Q
    Angelina jolie
    Gina carano
    Helen mirren
    Chloe grace moretz

  24. I vote for Roxanne Kernohan to be one of the mercs and Dee Wallace to take the Stallone role.

  25. I agree with just about everyone’s choices (except, no Uma, please), but what about Peta Wilson from TV’s La Femme Nikita? Her show predated Alias (and probably inspired it). Pam Grier could be a rival leader who’s always in contention with Helen Mirren or Sigourney or whoever. And instead of “Sisterhood is powerful,” the tagline could be “Sisterhood is powerfully bad-ass!” Yeah, that’s why I don’t write taglines for a living LOL.

  26. what about Patricia Rooney Mara?

  27. They already have a Expendables franchise for women, it’s the Charlie’s Angels franchise.
    The simple way to introduce a whole cast of past action women to it would be Charlie’s Angels: Past, Present, Future” where there would be an all out attack by supposed bad girls of the past. So much so, that they needed help from a bunch of Angels that we, supposedly, never heard of, but use their own corny lines from their movies or shows.
    A simple gathering of women from action movies would do nothing, UNLESS that star had a memorable or many memorable quotes. That is part of the key of The Expendables.
    Without a franchise name like Charlies Angels….the movie would totally flop.
    I know there was a Charlie’s Angels movie(I think Full Throttle) with Demi Moore coming back as a bad ex Angel, but this would be the further extreme of bad vs good women.
    On the bad side, you can add in, as the leader, Kim Basinger and/or Uma Thurman, who teamed up in as bad girl sisters in Final Analysis, along with having Lucy Liu switch sides for some reason of being overlooked or the like.
    Alright Hollywood, I gave you a realistic “in”, as just putting out a female Expendables will crash and burn(A good title if that’s the way Hollywood would chose to drop it on us and what would happen in the box office.
    P.S. Still waiting on a modern day “Hackers 2″

  28. Just watch all the seasons of Strike Back…Michelle Lukes and Rhona Mitra

  29. This is easy: pick any 70’s – 90’s actress who actually fought back:

    A Listers:
    — Rene Russo (Lethal Weapon)
    — Sigourney Weaver (Aliens)
    — Demi Moore (G.I. Jane)
    — Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween, etc.)
    — Jennifer Lopez (Not as much in the 1990’s, but someone younger to draw in current audiences)
    — Laura Dern (Jurassic Park)

    B to C-Listers to round it out:
    — Lucy Lawless (She is Xena for crying out loud.)
    — Rachel Ticotin (Countless movies, very undersung as a badass)
    — Teri Hatcher (Tango & Cash, Lois & Clark)
    — Kate Mulgrew (Remo Williams, Voyager)
    — Amy Johnson (Power Rangers, Flashpoint)

    And a matronly actress or two to play villain, boss, or to pull the strings as “behind the scenes” types (Schwartzenegger, Willis et al):
    — Judy Dench
    — Lynda Carter
    — Helen Mirren
    — Anjelica Huston
    — Betty White? (Laugh all you want, but after Lake Placid, she does has the chops to cut someone six feet tall down to size with her words alone.)
    — Jane Fonda
    — Marcia Gay Harden