Chris Rock on his ‘Superman’ role that never happened: ‘I was this close’

Every small-screen actor aspires to one day step on a gala stage and receive an Emmy in front of their peers. Yet for some, there’s an even grander dream to which they aspire — and it involves wearing tights and a cape.

In the latest The Hollywood Reporter roundtable discussion timed to the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards — taking place on Sunday, Sept. 19 — five of today’s hottest leading men are asked which role they most wish Hollywood would grant them. It doesn’t take long for Small Axe ’s John Boyega to proclaim that he knows the ideal part for his fellow participants, who include Chris Rock ( Fargo ), Regé-Jean Page (Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series , Bridgerton ), Josh O’Connor (Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, The Crown ) and Jonathan Majors (Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, Lovecraft Country ): Superman.

“I want the brother R.J. as Superman, man,” Boyega pronounces with an enthusiastic laugh. “Like, Jonathan, Superman. I want one of you guys to just go in there and fly . Just someone with knotted hair — just fly!” This bold casting idea is well-received by everyone on the panel, especially since Boyega goes on to explain that he can also see O’Connor and Rock as “messed up” villains for this modern-day take on the Man of Steel. (There are currently two projects in the works featuring Black Supermen, one is a limited series produced by Michael B. Jordan for HBO Max and the other a big-screen DC effort from J.J. Abrams written by Ta-Nehisi Coates.)

But the real surprise is that, unbeknownst to Boyega — who has had his own experience with franchise cinema, having co-headlined the most recent Star Wars movie trilogy — one of his compatriots has already had a brush with the famed DC comics property, albeit in a somewhat less than heroic capacity.

The Hollywood Reporter (THR) has partnered with us to launch an innovative XR experience, “The Immersive Red Carpet and Roundtable Experience,” which brings the Emmys red carpet right into your living room. With this immersive experience, viewers can see and interact with this year’s nominees. Click below to experience it!

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