William H. Macy Wants To Play Another Superhero

By Nathan Kamal | 2 months ago

William H. Macy

Actor William H. Macy is up for playing a superhero at least one more time in his long career. Although the Fargo actor is not exactly known for action films, he previously played a masked crimefighter in the 1999 movie Mystery Men. Though that movie was a box-office bomb, apparently the experience of playing an eccentric superhero named The Shoveler (whose superpower is that he shovels really, really…well) has not turned him the idea of returning to some kind of comic book role. In a recent interview with CBR, he expressed enthusiasm for appearing in a superhero movie, although he said that he found some of them too violent, which was not to his taste. So we probably won’t see him on The Boys anytime soon, but it’s a little odd for an actor whose most famous movie culminated in Steve Buscemi being graphically fed into a woodchipper, but whatever works for you, Mr. Macy. 

To be fair, superhero movies are in a very different place than they were the last time William H. Macy suited up to fight bad guys. Mystery Men was more of a comedic take on comic books than the MCU or DCEU usually takes on. The Ben Stiller directed film as based on Flaming Carrot Comics, an odd series that was published by various independent publishers including Dark Horse Comics and Aardvark-Vanaheim. It had far more in common with self-aware, consciously weird superhero comics like The Tick than Captain America and Iron Man, which did not drive audiences to theaters even in 1999. The plot of the film centered on a group of Z-list superheroes in a world that included a corporate sponsored Superman-type named Captain Amazing (Greg Kinnear) and an evil scientist named Casanova Frankenstein (Geoffrey Rush) who had inexplicably disco-themed henchmen. With a cast that included Stiller, Macy, and comic luminaries like Hank Azaria and Janeane Garofalo, it has since become a cult movie and persistently springs up talk of a sequel

William H. Macy

While it seems unlikely that William H. Macy is going to get a chance to play The Shoveler again, it is entirely likely that he could be in a superhero movie. With both Disney’s Marvel Studios and Warner Bros’ DCEU on an escalating arms raise to cast essentially every working actor in the world, it feels like only a matter of time before Macy is at least approached. After all, if the MCU can get an Academy Award winner like Ben Kingsley to make a fart joke in Iron Man 3, and the DCEU can get Michael Shannon to play a genocidal alien, it feels like they can make a place for Macy somewhere. 


William H. Macy is currently starring on The Dropout, a Hulu limited series about the rise and fall of Elizabeth Holmes and the Theranos scandal. He has also starred in movies that are bizarrely wonderful and bizarrely bad, so he is clearly not limiting himself to only the most prestige of projects. And given Macy’s propensity for playing put-upon, weaselly characters, there has to be some hapless villain he can be cast as. Get on it, MCU and DCEU.