Justin Timberlake as the Riddler in Batman

Justin Timberlake

Justin Timberlake can dance, sing, produce, act, and maybe he can even riddle. Ol’ J.T. can do just about anything these days, especially after being honored with the 2013 VMA’s Vanguard Award last Sunday. And now, Timberlake isn’t shy about the fact that he wants to be considered for the part of the Riddler in the next Batman film, alongside Ben Affleck.

While once expressing that he never wanted to be part of a superhero movie, Timberlake, 32, changed his tune when it came to talking about villains. “Now villain…I’ll tell you the villain I want to play more than anything because I grew up loving Batman, funny enough, is the Riddler. The Riddler is my favorite villain.”

Through his own good fortune, he apparently auditioned for the role of the Green Lantern but Ryan Reynolds was cast instead. Considering the movie was anything but successful, this was a good thing for Timberlake (and Reynolds’ career recovered just fine).

When it comes to the psychotic ways of the Riddler, however, Timberlake is intrigued. “The Riddler was like a sociopath,” said J.T. “He was proper crazy. So if I’m gonna play crazy, I’m wanna play proper crazy.”

He even dared to basically call out to the director, Zack Snyder, saying, “I’m ready. The Riddler. Give me a call.”

Is it surprising Timberlake is up for a role so quirky and “out there?”–not one bit. If you’ve watched any of his sketches on Saturday Night Life, it’s clear Timberlake has a taste for the quirky and weird. As a “pretty boy” in many senses of the word, Timberlake has done a phenomenal job of getting the world to notice him for more than just his blue eyes and vocal chords that make teenage girls swoon. He’s talented. A true actor isn’t afraid of playing quirky–which is even more notable considering his career began as a singer. Too often, we see singers attempt to act only to find they can’t bare to play anyone other than they’re celebrity-face of being the cool, sweet, likable singer character. Britney Spears in Crossroads. Mariah in Glitter. Oh, this list goes on and on, and it isn’t good.

But Timberlake can actually act–and he isn’t afraid to be unlikeable, weird, ugly, dorky, whatever.

To date, he’s played rolls in films such as Bad Teacher, The Social Network, Friends with Benefits, The Runner, Trouble with the Curve, Alpha Dog, In Time, and many more. Casting him as the Riddler would be a profoundly wise idea, particularly in that his naturally quirky ways on screen so far, would outweigh all the worry that Ben Affleck can’t be anything other than a pretty boy himself. (Really, folks, did you not see Argo or The Town? Affleck is more talented than you are.) Not to mention that his latest film, The Runner, is co-starring Affleck. Their chemistry in this will probably seal the deal for those of you who are having a bit of amnesia around either actor’s abilities on screen.

Timberlake even spoke up on Affleck’s behalf, saying, “Ben Affleck as Batman, I like it. I worked with Ben last summer and I’ve seen his process. I think he’s a brilliant filmmaker. I think he’s an extreme talent so he could surprise a lot of people.”

And there is no denying that Timberlake himself can pull-off a wicked (yet sexily engaging) grin and cackle. Justin Timberlake for the role of the Riddler? Absolutely.

<OpEd>

Written by: Ginger Vieira

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