There was uproar from the purists when Keanu Reeves was initially cast to play the title role in Constantine over fifteen years ago, so you can imagine the reactions in certain circles when reports started making the rounds earlier this week that the in-development HBO Max series coming from J.J. Abrams and his Bad Robot company was reportedly eying a young Riz Ahmed type to play the cult favorite character.
Fans almost immediately began rallying behind Matt Ryan, who admitted last year that he’d love the opportunity to audition for Abrams’ Justice League Dark, and to a lot of people, he’s become the definitive interpretation of the occult investigator, although Netflix will also be casting a Constantine of their own for the upcoming adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman.
The initial rumor claimed that the series was looking for an actor in their late-20s to headline the project, which would seemingly rule out both the 39 year-old Ryan and 38 year-old Ahmed. However, new fan art from SPDRMNKYXXIII nonetheless imagines how the Rogue One star could appear as Constantine, which you can check out below.
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There’s no denying that Ahmed definitely looks the part, but he’s allegedly only being used as the basis for the casting search as opposed to being in the running himself. That’s a real shame, too, because he’s one of the most quietly consistent and underrated actors out there, and looks set to be a major awards season contender thanks to his phenomenal performance in Sound of Metal.
With two versions of Constantine on the way to separate streaming services in the near future, though, it won’t be long until we find out who ends up under the respective trenchcoats.