Blue Beetle’s Xolo Maridueña Reveals How He Was Cast In the Film

Finding the perfect actor to embody a superhero on the big (or small) screen can be a long drawn-out process that often takes months. But every now and then, someone completely negates the need for a screen test. Such was the case with Cobra Kai’s Xolo Maridueña, the star of next year’s Blue Beetle movie for DC and Warner Bros. Pictures. And in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Maridueña reflected on what it was like to join the cast without an audition.

Headlining the first Latino-led superhero movie comes with its own set of pressures. But for Maridueña, those pressures intensified when Warner Bros. and DC execs called him into a meeting and offered him the role of Jaime Reyes on the spot. Luckily, it sounds like he was able to relax once he considered what the project meant for the Latin-American community at large.

“In the beginning, there was a bit of impostor syndrome,” said Maridueña. “Like, ‘Oh my gosh, how do they know? I haven’t even read a word of the script! How can they be so sure?’ Everyone was so welcoming and instilled so much confidence in me through the filming of the movie. It just comes back to the thing that I was saying earlier: Blue Beetle isn’t to make me the next heartthrob or biggest star. It’s just to show people, ‘Hey, these stories about Latinos don’t have to just be about narcos or crossing the border or being a gang member. You can be portrayed in a positive light.’ A superhero seems like the most positive light you can get in this industry.”

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Maridueña also discussed Jaime’s relationship with his family, which is a key element from the character’s comic book appearances. In fact, he says this is what really sets the film apart from other superhero movies, specifically those featuring heroes who have lost their parents or struggle to keep their double-life a secret from their loved ones. Technically, Jaime isn’t the only character with a surviving nuclear family unit (Ms. Marvel‘s Kamala Khan and Miles Morales, for example). But it should still make for an interesting dynamic onscreen.

“The family aspect to this movie and to the character is inherent to the comics and so special,” added Maridueña. “The family we’ve been able to create in the movie — the mom, dad, uncle, sister, grandmother — I feel like that aspect of being a superhero hasn’t been tapped into a ton. So many superheroes have alter egos, these aliases and personas. They have one life where they’re Spider-Man or Batman and then they go home and they’re Bruce Wayne or whoever. They’re constantly hiding their identity. But with this character, he lives with his family and there’s no way to hide who he is. Right from the very first moment he gets his powers, his family knows. That’s different.”

Blue Beetle will hit theaters on August 18, 2023.

Are you looking forward to seeing Maridueña in action next year? Let us know in the comments below!

Recommended Reading: Blue Beetle Vol. 1: The More Things Change

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