Josh Hartnett Says He’s Down To Play Johnny Cage In Mortal Kombat

Johnny Cage

The vast majority of the Mortal Kombat ensemble will be returning for the sequel, even several of the ones who were butchered in gloriously violent fashion, but there are still a few big roles to be cast. Everyone’s expecting the second installment to focus on the titular tournament, which opens the door to more fan favorites, while you’d imagine it would also require the appearance of Shao Khan.

However, it’s Johnny Cage that’s been generating the most speculation by far, which kicked off from almost the second Mortal Kombat ended on a fan-baiting note teasing that Lewis Tan’s Cole Young was off to Hollywood in an effort to recruit the franchise’s premiere movie star. Ryan Reynolds leaned into the fan casting to promote his Mint Mobile service, but it’s hard to imagine him boarding the video game adaptation, while Kano actor Josh Lawson nominated James Marsden as his preferred candidate.

Another surprising name has now thrown their hat into the ring, though, after Josh Hartnett admitted in a new interview that he was a huge fan of the arcade games growing up, and he’s certainly not against the idea of playing Johnny Cage in a future Mortal Kombat film.

“Johnny Cage? Really? Yeah, I mean I haven’t seen Mortal Kombat yet. I have to see what they’re doing, but yes, absolutely. That’s cool. I mean, I played Mortal Kombat until my hands hurt when I was a kid. It was one of those arcade games that was up at the corner store; and I’m not kidding you, it was actually called The Corner Store. I spent countless hours up there, and pounded on those buttons. Yeah, that’s interesting. Wow. I’m flattered.”

Two decades ago it looked as though Hartnett was poised to become a major A-list star, but he actively turned his back on big budget studio films after becoming disenchanted with the pressures of experiencing such fame at an early age. The 42 year-old is currently easing back into the action groove, however, by starring in two consecutive Guy Ritchie thrillers with Wrath of Man and Five Eyes, and he sounds more than game to get involved in Mortal Kombat.