Last week IGN ran some GI Joe casting news, following on the heels of the announcement that Marlon Wayans would be playing Roadblock… a character the trades said would be the leader of the GI Joe team. IGN confirmed that Duke would be in the movie, and they said that the producers were after Sam Worthington – about to break big in Avatar – for the role. My sources tell me that they did want him, but that it didn’t work out as of the end of last week. The other bit of news that they ran was that Joseph Gordon-Levitt would play Duke’s best friend in the movie, and they proceeded to give some spoiler details about that character based on an old draft of the script. I’ve spoken to my sources, and I can confirm that IGN’s spoiler info is right on the money for the final version of the script. If you read any further you’ll be spoiled on what the filmmakers may be trying to make the big twist of the film.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character is Duke’s best friend… and he’s also Cobra Commander. It seems that the character was a former Joe who went to the old dark side and started the whole Cobra terrorist organization. I love Joseph Gordon-Levitt and think he’s a terrific actor, but I do have to wonder why he’d want to be playing Cobra Commander. What a fucking goofy role in the best possible scenario. Maybe he sees the movie as a springboard to give him the financial opportunity to do more intriguing films, like Brick or The Lookout. I also don’t know why Cobra Commander needs to be Duke’s best friend – can’t an anti-terrorism task force just be up against a bunch of terrorists? A pre-existing relationship between the good guys and a gang of killer international terrorists is a little too close to the real world for me.