How to Get Cast in a DC Comics Movie or TV Show

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Photo Source: Courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures

DC Comics is responsible for releasing 121 movies over the course of 70 years, beginning with 1951’s “Superman and the Mole Men.” Since then, the comic book giant’s films have included everything from 1978’s “Superman” to 21st century offerings like “Justice League,” “Batman Begins,” “The Dark Knight,” and “Wonder Woman.” DC is also a force in television, with over 80 TV series to its name—ranging from classics like 1952’s “Adventures of Superman” and 1966’s “Batman” to modern shows like the CW’s “The Flash” and HBO Max’s “Doom Patrol.” 

If you want to show off your acting chops in the DC Universe’s next box office hit, we’ve got some tips on how to get involved. From projects currently filming to advice from actors who have appeared in the DCU, here’s our guide to getting cast in this iconic mega-franchise.

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What is DC Comics?

DC Comics is one of the oldest American comic book companies, publishing its first title in 1937. Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, and Catwoman are among the iconic label’s most famous characters. The comics have spawned a whole world of movies and TV shows revolving around its superheroes and supervillains. The next film release from the DC Comics Universe is “The Batman,” starring Robert Pattinson as the Caped Crusader, which opens March 4; the most recent TV series is the CW’s “Naomi,” created by Ava DuVernay and Jill Blankenship, which premiered on Jan. 11.

What actors are in the ensembles of DC movies and TV shows?

The films have featured some of the biggest names in Hollywood, including Christopher Reeve (1978’s “Superman”), Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson (1989’s “Batman”), Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, and Morgan Freeman (Christopher Nolan’s “Batman” films), Heath Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix (who both won Oscars for playing the Joker, in 2008’s “The Dark Knight” and 2019’s “Joker,” respectively), Ryan Reynolds (2013’s “Green Lantern”), Henry Cavill (2013’s “Man of Steel”), Ben Affleck (2016’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”), and Idris Elba (2021’s “The Suicide Squad”). 

And don’t forget about the women of the DC Universe, including Margot Kidder (“Superman”), Kim Bassinger (“Batman”), Michelle Pfeiffer (1992’s “Batman Returns”), Nicole Kidman (1995’s “Batman Forever”), Halle Berry (2004’s “Catwoman”), Anne Hathaway (2012’s “The Dark Knight Rises”), Amy Adams (“Man of Steel”), Gal Gadot (2017’s “Wonder Woman”), and Margot Robbie (2020’s “Birds of Prey”). 

Many Hollywood heavy hitters have also starred in DC Comics series, including Adam West and Eartha Kitt (1966’s “Batman”), Lynda Carter (1975’s “Wonder Woman”), Dean Cain and Teri Hatcher (1993’s “Lois & Clark”), Tom Welling (2001’s “Smallville”), Regina King (2019’s “Watchmen”), Ruby Rose (2019’s “Batwoman”), Brendan Fraser (2019’s “Doom Patrol”), and Kaley Cuoco (2019’s “Harley Quinn”).

How does the casting process work for DC Universe movies and TV shows?

The DCU is so well-known that it can feel overwhelming to even audition. However, it’s critical to trust your creative instincts. That’s how Gal Gadot won the role of Wonder Woman, making her debut as the superhero in “​​Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” 

The movie’s director, Zack Snyder, discussed Gadot’s audition with Ben Affleck in an interview with Film Junkee. “They were doing a scene that’s not in the movie; we had just written it for the audition,” he said. “[Gal] was just confronting [Affleck’s Batman] about his drinking—or, I don’t know, something intense. And so she says something to him at the end of the scene; it’s kind of a riff on the: ‘You’ve never known a woman like me.’ And then in casting, he’s doing the scene like this: [makes a serious face]. And then she says it, and he goes, ‘Whoa.’ And it was awesome, because we were just like, ‘I guess this is Wonder Woman.’ ” 

But even stars have their doubts. Christian Bale told MTV about how he felt like he screwed up his “Batman Begins” audition. “I got there. They put me in Val Kilmer’s [who played the role in “Batman Forever”] suit,” Bale said. “It didn’t even fit properly, and I stood in it, and I went, ‘I feel like an idiot. What kind of guy walks around dressed like a bat?’ I went, ‘I can’t do this in a normal voice. I have to become a beast in order to sell this to myself.’ I went home that evening, and my wife said, ‘How’d it go?’ I went, ‘I kind of did this.’ And I showed her, and she went, ‘Oh, you fucked that one up, didn’t you?’ Thank God they went for it.”

What projects are currently filming?

Filming for “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” wrapped in Dec. 2021, according to Jason Momoa, who plays the titular character. The actor announced the news via his Instagram Stories, per Collider. He also expressed his gratitude for being able to film in his native Hawaii. The film will premiere on Dec. 16, 2022.

According to a tweet from director David F. Sandberg, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” wrapped filming at the end of August. The movie’s release date is June 2, 2023. As for “Wonder Woman 3,” Gal Gadot recently revealed to InStyle that writer-director Patty Jenkins’ script is still in progress, and filming will “probably start in a year and a half or so.”

 

Where can you find DC Comics casting calls and auditions?

Earlier this year, an untitled DC project was casting with Backstage. Warner Bros. was looking for Latinx or Hispanic talent, aged 18–20, to play a rebellious Mexican American woman in an upcoming film. Production stated that filming for the new project will begin in April, taking place in Puerto Rico and Atlanta. While there are no current opportunities for work in a DC Comics movie or TV show, keep an eye on Backstage’s Casting Calls page; you can also check out this “Batman”-themed roundup to find active listings.

Who are the casting directors for DC Comics movies and TV shows?

While the massive franchise employs a number of CDs across its many projects, Kristy Carlson is a name to know, according to Deadline. She’s currently the head of the feature casting department at Warner Bros. Pictures, which owns DC. Prior to that, she was the senior vice president of the department; she has been at the studio since 1999. She served as the casting director for DC films including “Wonder Woman” and its sequel, “Justice League,” “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” “Man of Steel,” and “Watchmen.” She also worked in the casting departments of the “Harry Potter” films, “Edge of Tomorrow,” “Crazy Rich Asians,” and “A Star Is Born.”

What are the best audition tips for landing a role in a DC Comics movie or TV show?

Michael Keaton, who played Bruce Wayne in Tim Burton’s 1989 “Batman” and its 1992 sequel, “Batman Returns,” discussed his approach to auditioning on an episode of Backstage’s In the Envelope: The Actor’s Podcast. “I made this decision: I never looked at an audition as an audition again,” he said. “I looked at it like: Oh, I have a job. Here’s my job. I have a script. I went to work. If I was only there 25 minutes, when I left, I was getting off work. So I said, ‘It doesn’t matter if I got the job. I already got the job.’ It may take a while, but it’ll pay off in the long run.”

Halle Berry, who played the titular character in 2004’s “Catwoman,” emphasized the importance of perseverance and believing in yourself. “If you want to be seen in a certain light and there’s no role for you, create it,” she told Backstage. “That requires being focused, being tenacious, not taking no for an answer, and really having a desire to do something that you love. It’s about believing in yourself—believing that you can do it.”

Regina King, who starred in the Emmy-winning HBO limited series “Watchmen,” says that finding a common bond with your character is essential to success. “Although a character is not you, it’s kind of your job as an actor to find a bit of you in that character, because that’s what allows you to play it honestly,” King told Backstage. “I know it sounds crazy, but you could even be playing a murderer. Finding something in there…that you the actor can connect to—that’s what our job is.”

Looking for remote work? Backstage has got you covered! Click here for auditions you can do from home!

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