One thing is for sure about actress Morena Baccarin (Firefly, Homeland): she certainly has a knack for comic book adaptations. With roles in both Gotham and The Flash this season, the only thing missing from the actress's portfolio was a leading role in a superhero film - potentially even boasting some superhuman abilities herself.
Though such a turn doesn't seem in the cards just yet, word has broken that Baccarin has landed the female lead opposite Ryan Reynolds in Deadpool. There is little known about the part in question - other than it putting her opposite Wade Wilson a.k.a. Deadpool a.k.a. the Merc with a Mouth - but if the previous script rumors prove true, the part looks to cast the actress in a genuinely new light.
Baccarin's credentials, while limited more to the small screen than the big, are nothing to scoff at. In other words, THR's report that she has joined the cast of director Tim Miller's X-Men spinoff means another promising addition to an ensemble that may now have its leads, sidekick, and villain in place.
Landing the role meant beating out the likes of Taylor Schilling (Orange is the New Black) and Jessica De Gouw (Arrow), but details on the character have still yet to be released by the studio - coming instead from comics. Leading ladies in Wade Wilson's life are few and far between, with Vanessa Carlysle - also known as the mutant Copycat - a prime candidate. Suspicions that Carlysle would fit into the story were also supported by the recently released casting calls for Deadpool, albeit under a codename:
[LINDSAY] Any ethnicity, 20s, attractive and worldly. Smart, tough, beautiful but a little bit broken. Nothing has ever been easy for her and she’s developed a thick skin and cynical outlook. But she’s not a victim—she may not have a great life but she’s holding it together and does what she needs to get by. She’s got a great sense of humor but it leans heavily towards irony and sarcasm. ROLE REQUIRES THREE SEQUEL OPTIONS.
For the unfamiliar, that's a fairly faithful description of Carlysle, a young prostitute who ends up getting far closer to hired killer Wade Wilson than even he expects. Their relationship ends when Wilson learns of his terminal cancer, and seeks to save ''Ness' the heartache by parting ways before he starts to succumb to the illness.
Of course, Wade doesn't die. He instead joins the Weapon X program that gave the X-Men's Wolverine his own enhanced physiology. The addition of a self-healing mutation to Wilson works... with a catch: his tumors being added to the mix means with every wound inflicted (then healed), Wade's body becomes even more scarred and disfigured. What happens to Vanessa in the film universe - and whether her own mutations will be adopted from the comics, or abandoned - is anyone's guess.
As a strange coincidence, Baccarin's casting means she may end up sharing scenes with actress/MMA fighter Gina Carano (Haywire), recently added to the cast in an unknown role. The two actresses were popular picks among comic fans for the role of DC Comics' live-action Wonder Woman, but will turn to Fox's stable of "X-Men" characters for their first big screen comic roles.
If the rumors prove true, then it may be Baccarin's comedic chops most thoroughly tested opposite Reynolds. The most famous incarnation of Deadpool can seem almost too manic and detached from reality for a traditional romance; most often, it's the physical embodiment of Death with whom Deadpool shares a deep romantic connection. Hopefully a balance can be struck, and Baccarin's lighter side is able to match that of Reynolds (a tall order from any actress).
What do you think of the casting? Do you have faith that Morena Baccarin is the right woman for the role, or do you hold up hope that she'll be playing another Marvel character like Domino, or Death herself? Sound off in the comments.
Deadpool hits theaters February 12, 2016.