Marvel is all about its cinematic universe these days and trying to create box office juggernauts, but the studio also had a cult classic with Punisher: War Zone. The first Punisher is awful (because let’s put a guy who wears a long, black trench coat in Tampa), but War Zone is delightfully insane, and judging by Mad Max: Fury Road, Tom Hardy seems attracted to that kind of material.
Steve recently spoke with Hardy, and touched on superhero movies with the actor. Hardy was set to star in the supervillain team-up film Suicide Squad, but had to drop out (read more about that here). Nevertheless, he still wants to do a comic book movie, and at the top of his list is The Punisher:
Collider: I heard Warner Bros. has a few more superhero movies, maybe one or two that they’re developing [Laughs].
HARDY: I want The Punisher… I want The Punisher, or Splinter Cell, I want something…I don’t know what I want.
You as Punisher could be very interesting.
HARDY: I’m not big enough to be The Punisher, I’m 5’9” [Laughs].
But I actually think that adds to the character.
HARDY: Frank Castle, I would love it. Is that him, isn’t it?
Yeah. It’s Frank Castle.
Yes, 5’9” is slightly shorter than the 6’4” Ray Stevenson who played the role in War Zone, but plenty of actors are shorter than they appear on screen, so I wouldn’t count that as a strike against Hardy. What’s important is that he has the intensity and intimidating attitude the character needs.
Now that Marvel has the rights to the Punisher back, the character would work well on television, specially in the Netflix scene since Daredevil showed that Marvel is going for a gritty aesthetic. I know Hardy is too big for the small screen, but Punisher works very well when placed next to other heroes because he’s willing to kill.
That being said, Hardy seems slightly ambivalent about it playing Punisher if he’s also reaching for video game characters like Splinter Cell’s Sam Fisher or Hitman’s Agent 47. He’s actually signed on to do Splinter Cell and when Steve interviewed him on the red carpet at CinemaCon, Hardy said they’re currently working on a draft and they also need to find time to shoot it.
While The Punisher seems unlikely right now—unless Hardy officially signs on and gives it some juice—at least one actor seems interested in the role, and as we’ve seen before, a Punisher movie done right can be plenty of fun.
Look for more with Tom Hardy soon. Click here for all our Mad Max: Fury Road coverage.