X-Men: Is Shia LaBeouf the right pick for Iceman in the MCU?

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 01: Shia LaBeouf attends the LA Special Screening Of Roadside Attractions' "The Peanut Butter Falcon" at ArcLight Hollywood on August 01, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 01: Shia LaBeouf attends the LA Special Screening Of Roadside Attractions' "The Peanut Butter Falcon" at ArcLight Hollywood on August 01, 2019 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images) /

Shia Labeouf is rumored to be playing the X-Men’s Iceman in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and that could be both an MCU gift and a curse.

Fans of the X-Men have been waiting for Marvel’s Mightiest Mutants to make their way to the Marvel Cinematic Universe for years. While there was never any set date for that happening in the MCU, the understandable shut-down of movie productions may have made that wait a little bit longer. While that’s disappointing, there’s some good news that will come from this.

Now, Marvel Studios has more time to select the right actors for each character who has yet to debut in the MCU. This also means that rumors about casting are going to happen more often as time goes on. The most recent one suggests that Marvel is interested in having Shia Labeouf play Bobby “Iceman” Drake.

Shia Labeouf has had a… unique career. He’s been in action, comedy, and drama. Labeouf may be best known, however, for playing Sam Witwicky in Michael Bay’s Transformers franchise.

While this is arguably his most popular role, he did receive a lot of criticism from fans. But here’s the thing though: His character may have stunk, but he’s not to blame. He received a script and did exactly what he was paid to do. His performance was still great in spite of the limited character. That said, is he the right pick to play Iceman? Yes and no.

Why Shia LaBeouf could play the X-Men’s Iceman

Say what you want about Shia Labeouf, but the guy can act. A lot of times we (this writer included) haven’t been able to look past an actor’s previous role. It’s unfortunate that this keeps us biased. Given the opportunity, Shia Labeouf would nail this role.

We’ve seen him play goofy and sarcastic. We’ve also seen him flip the switch and play a dramatic role. Iceman is all of this and more.

People tend to look at Iceman as if all he does is joke around, but that’s only part of his character. A major part, but only a chunk nonetheless. Throughout Iceman’s time as a member of the X-Men, we’ve seen him get serious when the situation required it. And Shia would have absolutely no problem getting all of that across.

That’s the pro to Shia playing Iceman. Here comes the cons.

Why he ultimately shouldn’t play Iceman

As this writer stated before, a lot of fans won’t be able to get past some of Shia Labeouf’s past roles, especially in Transformers. It’s ridiculous to think that this would even affect someone because it’s an actor’s job to try different things, but it is what it is.

Some can’t get over the fact that the Transformers films weren’t of the standard of their beloved 1980s cartoon, claiming that the actor wa partially responsible “for ruining their childhood’. As hyperbolic as that may be, it’s going to negatively affect people. Not everyone, but some.

The X-Men franchise has to come out of the gate near flawless. Casting Shia Labeouf could prevent some from thinking positively on the direction of the X-Men franchise early on – something that Marvel Studios can’t afford to happen. It’s regrettable that this is the case. However, it could be the truth.

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Age is also a concern. Shia Labeouf is 34 years old. By the time production starts rolling, he could be close to, if not, 40 years old. If that happens, how could he convincingly play the young and enthusiastic mutant for multiple movies? Iceman isn’t someone who can be in one movie and disappear. On top of being popular, he’s too important to the X-Men. We need Iceman around for a while. At least long enough to complete a few MCU phases.

If production of the franchise was starting this year, his age wouldn’t be an issue. Since it isn’t, this may have to be a no. That on top of his perception is going to concern fans.

Some fans already believe that the actor playing Iceman should be part of the LGBTQ+ community given that the character is gay in the comics. That could be a major step forward in terms of representation.

There could be other roles for Shia Labeouf to play, but Iceman isn’t one of them. Marvel Studios must err on the side of caution when dealing with the X-Men in the MCU. Casting him may seem like a good idea and he could play the role, but it might be better to let another actor shine with this one.

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What do you think? Is Shia Labeouf the right actor for the role? Let us know in the comments below.