Fresh off the tiny Green Lantern appearances in Zack Snyder’s Justice League—wherein a couple of Lanterns get summarily murdered—HBO Max has announced the first bit of casting for their upcoming Green Lantern series. Finn Wittrock (American Horror Story: Freak Show) will play Guy Gardner, a Lantern Deadline describes as “a hulking mass of masculinity, and, as rendered in the comics, an embodiment of 1980s hyper-patriotism. And yet, Guy is somehow likable.”
Didn’t we just have a hyper-patriotic and masculine comic book character on a series? Not that he was even remotely likable.
This iteration of the magic-ring wielding superhero has been in the works since 2019, when it was announced that comic-adaptation mastermind Greg Berlanti was developing the series. Last year, HBO Max greenlit (it’s a term, okay, not a play on words!) a ten-episode series, with Seth Grahame-Smith (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) serving as showrunner. The series announcement included the news that appearing Lanterns would include Guy Gardner, Jessica Cruz, Simon Baz and Alan Scott—and now we’ve got one out of four.
The new series follows various Green Lanterns over the years, beginning with the very first Green Lantern, Alan Scott, in 1941. Gardner’s part of the story is set in 1984 and will also involve half-alien Bree Jarta.
This isn’t Berlanti’s first tangle with the character. When Arrow ended, one of the main characters stumbled on a glowing green object that could only be a Green Lantern ring. That tease will apparently be part of a crossover storyline for Berlanti’s CW superhero shows this year.
But Berlanti also co-wrote the 2011 film (pictured above) Green Lantern, which starred Ryan Reynolds and was, shall we say, not well received. One of his co-writers on that film, Arrowverse writer-producer Marc Guggenheim, is also a writer on the upcoming series. It’s interesting that they’re now returning to the character after a lot more experience working with comics adaptations.
Wittrock is the first actor to be cast for the new Green Lantern, though the Hollywood Reporter says casting for Alan Scott should be announced soon. The show is just one of the DC properties being developed for HBO Max (which is already home to Doom Patrol and Harley Quinn, among other DC series). Other series in the works include a Suicide Squad spinoff about John Cena’s Peacemaker, a Gotham City cop show connected to The Batman, and a number of J.J. Abrams shows.
It’s a lot.