Marvel mainstay returns while DC is a man down (updated)

Tom Hardy had to forfeit his role as Rick Flagg in Suicide Squad

Even though I’ve been busy covering all of this awards hysteria, I have been keeping my ear to the ground regarding upcoming projects that I’ve had my eye on. I had to hold off on reporting some news regarding an upcoming DC cinematic venture that broke yesterday because I was venting about the Oscar nominations and preparing for the Critics Choice Award. So, now seems as good a time as any to report that Tom Hardy had to bow out of David Ayer’s Suicide Squad. Scheduling conflicts had to force the Inception and Dark Knight Rises star to bow out of the star-studded film about notable DC Criminals and supervillains who do dirty work for the U.S. government. Hardy was slated to play Rick Flagg, a U.S. Colonel who has a hand in assembling the Squad and tries to get them in line to do their duty, even though the Suicide Squad is loaded with criminal and psychotic egos constantly clashing. Reports are circulating that Jake Gyllenhaal could possibly reunite with Ayer, they worked together on the film End of Watch, and fill the roster spot but nothing has been confirmed as of yet. Suicide Squad is scheduled to arrive in theaters on August 6, 2016 starring Will Smith, Jared Leto, Margot Robbie, Cara Delevigne, Jai Courtney, Viola Davis and Jesse Eisenberg.

Scarlett Johansson will be back as Black Widow

DC lost a talented actor in Tom Hardy for Suicide Squad, yet Marvel is reporting that familiar faces will be back for one of its upcoming installments. Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow will return to the The Avengers Initiative in Captain America: Civil War. The Russo Brothers, who will return to direct the sequel to Winter Soldier, announced that the S.H.I.E.L.D., well former S.H.I.E.L.D., spy/master assassin will return to play a role in the major Phase Three installment, which will not only pit Avengers Captain America and Iron Man against each other due to this new Superhero Registration Act, but introduce Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, King of the African Nation of Wakanda, a.k.a Black Panther. The directors also announced that Sebastian Stan will return to portray Bucky Barnes, now known as the Winter Soldier. Captain America: Civil War should be considered a mini-Avengers at this point, considering so many heroes are at the center of the action. The film is scheduled for release on May 6, 2016 starring Chris Evans as Captain America, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Daniel Brühl, who was tapped to play the unknown villain a few months ago, and also Hayley Atwell and Dominic Cooper will return to reprise their roles as Peggy Carter and Howard Stark.

Update: Joel Kinnaman, has been cast to replace Hardy as Rick Flagg. Kinnaman starred in the recent remake of RoboCop last year.

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