Back in April fans were greeted to an announcement by WB that DC comics would launch a dedicated streaming service for all their cape and cowl fare and their first foray into live action television would be Titans, a beloved team of younger superheroes in the DC Comics Universe.
Titans, which has been in development since 2014 and was once thought to be dead, was given new life by creators Geoff Johns (president and COO of DC Comics) and Akiva Goldsman (Star Trek: Discovery).
Early in June, DC’s parent company WB released a character breakdown of the main cast and fans surmised that beloved characters Nightwing, Raven, Beast Boy, and Starfire would make their live-action debuts on the show.
Long time followers of the Titans were finally rewarded when late last month, Geoff Johns announced on Twitter that production had finally begun and casting was underway.
As it turns out we wouldn’t have to wait long for a casting announcement either as just last week 13 year old Australian actress Teagan Croft was cast as Raven, the mysterious half-demon sorceress.
Raven, the original catalyst in bringing the New Teen Titans lineup together in their 1980 debut and first lead role announced for the TV show, has been a fan favorite character and has featured in almost every Titans lineup since her debut in 1980.
With more casting news shortly approaching I’ve chosen my picks for the core members of the team – but I’ve also chosen a few select actors and actresses to play some longshot characters that I would love to see appear in Titans.
Nightwing – Drake Bell
Nightwing serves as both the leader and most experienced member of the team. The one time protege of Batman brings both a calm demeanor and serious side when fighting crime.
Haunted by the death of his parents, Nightwing is a determined hero and dedicated friend, and I believe Drake Bell can capture his essence on the silver screen.
Drake is a popular choice to play Nightwing on TV and it isn’t without merit, he’s a seasoned actor who has worked on Nickelodeon shows like Drake & Josh, and has even been the voice of Spiderman in various cartoons and video games.
Looks-wise, Drake’s tall slender build fits Nightwing perfectly and he’s already piqued interests by posting a picture of him suited up as Robin on Twitter. For my money, he’s an excellent choice to play Nightwing.
Starfire – Holly Taylor
Starfire is another member of the Teen Titans that debuted in 1980 and remains one of the most popular members of the group to this day.
For Starfire, an alien from the planet Tamaran, I chose relatively new actress Holly Taylor of the FX show The Americans.
Throughout the Cold War era drama she plays Paige Clark, a shy unassuming teenager whose parents hold the dark secret of working for the Soviet Union while living undercover as Americans. Eventually she finds out her parents’ secret and begins to rebel against them and find her own moral center.
I found Holly’s character arc in The Americans to be very similar to Starfire as she adjusts to her new life on Earth and becomes a member of the Teen Titans, and I believe Holly could pull off the role wonderfully.
Beast Boy – Asa Butterfield
Garfield Logan aka Beast Boy is the mischievous little brother of the crew. A changeling with green skin, eyes, and hair, Beast Boy gets his namesake from his ability to take the shape of any species in the animal kingdom.
For Beast Boy I’ve chosen Asa Butterfield – known for roles in The Space Between Us, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and Hugo. Asa is a very talented actor, and at 20 years old could provide the smooth, funny energy that is crucial to Beast Boy’s character.
Another important aspect of the Beast Boy character is the innocence of the character and I think it’s important that the character doesn’t come off as inauthentic, something even the comics have grappled with over time.
For this reason, I think Asa is a perfect fit for Beast Boy as he has one of the most varied filmographies in Hollywood and always remains true to a character.
Wonder Girl (Donna Troy) – Alycia Debnam-Carey
She may be a longshot to appear in Titans but I believe the series would be all the better if Wonder Girl played a part in it.
Donna Troy aka Wonder Girl was one of the four original members of the 1960s Teen Titans team, and as a clone of Wonder Woman is one of the fiercest warriors of the bunch.
For a potential Wonder Girl role in Titans, I would cast Alycia Debnam-Carey, of Fear the Walking Dead and The 100 for the job.
Her work as Alicia Clark on Fear the Walking dead has seen her evolve from a young girl who often put her group in danger to one of the strongest characters in the entire show, something critical to Wonder Girl’s character.
With the success of Wonder Woman, a strong female presence from Wonder Girl on Titans would be a welcome addition to the team, and I believe Alycia could pull it off effortlessly.
Deathstroke – Manu Bennett
What can you say about Deathstroke? He’s the Titans’ arch nemesis, a master assassin-for-hire and once even took down the entire Justice League single-handedly.
He was also played perfectly by Manu Bennett on Arrow and that’s who I believe should be cast in the role.
Manu is an absolute juggernaut as Slade and captures Deathstroke’s ability to turn from anti-hero to villain in the snap of one of his unsuspecting victim’s necks, and he’s already been endorsed by Deathstroke’s co-creator Marv Wolfman.
If they do end up using Deathstroke on Titans and I think there is a good bet they will, WB would be foolish not to scoop up Manu Bennett for the role.
What do you think about my picks for Titans? Would you add any characters or villains to the roster? Let us know who you would cast in the comments below.
Image credits: DC, Teagan Croft, Drake Bell, Holly Taylor, Asa Butterfield, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Manu Bennett