It really seems like Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen's Green Hornet is cursed, doesn't it? We've all followed the ups and downs of the production and just when it seemed like we were out of the woods, now we're short one villain. Earlier reports had Nicolas Cage making an appearance as an unnamed villain in the action comedy, but according to The Hollywood Reporter's Heatvision blog, Cage has officially left the production. I can only assume that Cage left hornet to work on the recently announced Drive Angry and the Hungry Rabbit Jumps.

Not much was known about what Goldberg and Rogen had planned for their Hornet's baddie, and over the years The Green Hornet has fought everyone from bootleggers to the Axis of Evil and communists. But in some of the earlier incarnations of the Hornet, his major villains were Mr. X, a shadowy crime figure, and Oliver Perry, a sleazy P.I. who was constantly threatening to 'unmask' our hero. No one knew for sure who Cage was going to play, and frankly I think he could have pulled off either role, but it's not like he's the only actor who could. Luckily for Columbia, Gondry had yet to shoot any footage with Cage, so when they find his replacement, they can start from scratch.

That said, I thought it would be fun to engage in a little casting wish-fulfillment and I've got five actors who I think can pick up where Cage left off. Now, some of the actors might not be who you would expect to show up in a Seth Rogen movie, but hey, this is my fantasy casting pool, so why not aim for the top?

After the jump: my picks for a brand new bad guy...


1) Philip Seymour Hoffman


While most gossips are expecting Hoffman to take a role in a certain other comic-book franchise, I'm personally not holding my breath. Now, Hoffman has already played a villain to great success in an action franchise, so we know he has the experience, and if you were unlucky enough to have seen Along Came Polly then you know he can be funny when he wants to be. Not to mention here are very few actors who can pull off sleazy as convincingly as this guy.

2) Alan Rickman


I think Mr. Rickman might be better suited to the Mr X style of villain, but again we have an actor that can scare the crap out of you but also has done his time in the laugh factory. Sure, he's gotten a little soft and fuzzy over the years as Professor Snape, but he was the bad guy in Die Hard after all, and that has to be good for at least a few movie in-jokes.

3) Danny McBride


Including McBride on the list depends on the balance of the comedy and the action, but either way, I think McBride can do strange or skeevey with relative ease. So regardless of what kind of villain the Hornet has this time around, I think McBride could bring it home -- just don't tell Christopher Rosen over at The Observer that I said that.

4) Ralph Fiennes


If you need a scary/silly crime boss, you could do worse than Fiennes -- no, seriously, hear me out. If you've seen In Bruges, then you already know that the Oscar-nominated actor has a way with being inadvertently funny, and I happen to think that particular skill is much harder than it looks.


5) Jeff Goldblum


During the commentary for Pineapple Express, Rogen expressed his deep regret over a throwaway joke about the actor (or as deep as Rogen can get), so I say make it up to the quirky actor by giving him a job.

There's my list, so now I'll turn it over to you: sound off in the comments on who you would like to see take over for Cage as the villain in The Green Hornet ...