'Deadpool 2': Michael Shannon Frontrunner to Play Cable (Report)

Screening of
Michael Shannon attends the screening of Focus Features’ ‘Nocturnal Animals’ (Photo: Getty Images, Araya Diaz/WireImage)

By Borys Kit, The Hollywood Reporter

Michael Shannon has emerged as the frontrunner for the much-buzzed about Deadpool 2 role of Cable opposite Ryan Reynolds, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Sources say that Shannon isn’t the only one on the studio’s list but is the one leading the pack as the top choice at this stage. Stranger Things actor David Harbour is also on the shortlist. Kyle Chandler’s name surfaced last summer but sources say he was never in contention for the role.

David Leitch is directing the sequel to Fox’s surprise blockbuster that grossed $783 million worldwide.

Reynolds is reprising his role as the wise-cracking mercenary with the story expanding to include other characters from Deadpool’s corner of Marvel’s X-Men universe.

Atlanta breakout Zazie Beetz is already cast as the super-powered merc named Domino.

The character Shannon would potentially play, Cable, was co-created by Deadpool co-creator Rob Liefeld and writer Louise Simonson, and is described as in many ways being the opposite of Deadpool: a man who is a leader and used to being obeyed, who is very controlled but with an aura of simmering violence. In the comics, Cable was from the future and was the adult son of Scott Summers, also known as the X-Man Cyclops.

Deadpool 2 is scheduled to shoot this summer in Vancouver.

One factor that could prevent Shannon from taking on the role is scheduling. The in-demand Oscar nominee just signed on for the indie What They Had, which shoots this spring.

Shannon, who was Oscar nominated for his work in Nocturnal Animals, has already made two comic book movies in the past: He appeared in Jonah Hex and played villain General Zod in Man of Steel.

He has several movies wrapped, including the period drama The Current War, in which he plays George Westinghouse, and Horse Soldiers, an ensemble war drama that also stars Chris Hemsworth and Michael Pena.

He is repped by CAA.

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