Somebody’s getting punched in the balls. The Wrap reports that Karl Urban, star of The Boys, Dredd, and the Kelvin Star Trek movies (but he’ll always be the Russian assassin who tried to kill Jason Bourne to me), will play Johnny Cage in the sequel to 2021’s Mortal Kombat movie. Johnny Cage is one of the original Mortal Kombat characters, a movie star who enters the mystical tournament to protect Earth from the Outworld forces. According to producer Todd Garner, Johnny sat out the first movie because he was too outsized a personality for an ensemble, because Kano was already funny and Johnny would overshadow him, and because he was white and having a lead who isn’t Asian would have been racist, even though he was one of the leads of the original game. (I guess it depends on his mood when you ask him.) But apparently, it’s not racist anymore, so we’re getting Karl Urban as Johnny.
That’s fine, I guess. Johnny Cage was based on Jean-Claude Van Damme, and I really wish he had gotten to play Johnny in a movie at one point. But he chose Street Fighter, and now he’s 62 years old, so I guess they want to go younger – although Urban is 50, and Van Damme can still kick ass like a champ. Their excuses for leaving him out of the first one are all stupid, especially since they created a new character who was basically Johnny Cage, only Asian, and they relegated Liu Kang, an Asian character who is actually supposed to be the main hero, to the background. But whatever; those are the least of that stupid movie’s problems. I didn’t like the 2021 Mortal Kombat, and despite liking Karl Urban quite a bit, I don’t really want to see the sequel.