Aquaman: Jason Momoa Always Expected to Play the Villain, Not the Hero

Jason Momoa in Aquaman

Jason Momoa has been trying to market himself as a leading man for a long time, but Aquaman may be the role that finally convinces wary studios executives. Not only does he make the perfect Arthur Curry, those around him have stated again and again that he was uniquely suited to bring the character to life.

Director James Wan spoke about Momoa playing the titular character at the film's press junket in New York City. Asked why Momoa was the perfect choice to play the role, Wan didn't miss a beat in extolling the actor's strengths. Citing his personality, the director felt the filming process was less about "bringing him to Aquaman, but bringing Aquaman to him." He made it clear that Momoa is fun to work with, something you can really see in the finished product.

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Wan seemed especially proud of being "the one to showcase the other side of Jason Momoa that not many people have seen, which is the fun and funny side of him." He also teased that the film sets Momoa up as a potential romantic lead. The actor agreed, saying "I just want to speak English. I don't want to fight anymore," a comment directed toward his role as Khal Drogo on HBO's A Game of Thrones.

Momoa was pretty humble about his Aquaman casting from the very beginning, and he still is. Remembering what it was like to first be chosen for the role, he said, "I could see Patrick [Wilson] getting hired for Aquaman. I'm the last person who should be hired for Aquaman." As someone who has dealt with being typecast, he added, "I thought I'd be playing a villain."

Momoa mad it clear he felt it a huge honor to be cast by Zack Snyder for Justice League, and then to have James Wan to expand on his character. Noting the parallels between his character and his life, the actor explained, "It's a really beautiful hero's journey to get to this place, and I think I'm very lucky."

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Directed by James Wan, Aquaman stars Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Amber Heard as Mera, Patrick Wilson as Ocean Master, Willem Dafoe as Nuidis Vulko, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Manta, Temuera Morrison as Thomas Curry, Dolph Lundgren as Nereus, and Nicole Kidman as Queen Atlanna. The film opens on December 21.

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