INJUSTICE Interview: Green Lantern Actor Brian T. Delaney Breaks Down His Take On Hal Jordan (Exclusive)

INJUSTICE Interview: Green Lantern Actor Brian T. Delaney Breaks Down His Take On Hal Jordan (Exclusive)

Brian T. Delaney (What If...?) plays Green Lantern in Injustice, and the actor talks to us about his approach to Hal Jordan, his future DC Animated Universe hopes, and the hero's role in this conflict.

Injustice is now available on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital, and the movie kicks off with an unthinkable tragedy that propels Superman into a dangerous new mindset, ultimately pitting Justice League members against each other in what we can promise you is a epic battle you won't want to miss.

Based on the Injustice: Gods Among Us video game, this animated adaptation from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment primarily pulls from Tom Taylor and Brian Buccellato's critically acclaimed comic book prequels, telling an original story with a lot of iconic moments thrown in for good measure.

There are a lot of characters in this small screen adaptation, and Green Lantern Hal Jordan plays a small, yet extremely crucial, role in proceedings. Earlier this week, we had the opportunity to catch up with actor Brian T. Delaney to discuss the work that went into bringing the fan-favourite cosmic character to life and got his thoughts on the role Hal winds up playing in the action-packed adventure.

Delaney also weighs in on potentially returning to the DC Animated Universe somewhere down the line and what he loves about being a voiceover actor. Finally, we even get some intel on his time in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Multiverse?) playing Peter Quill in the recent Disney+ TV series What If...?
 

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I know Injustice isn’t your first time in the DC Universe, but Green Lantern is a huge character, so what did that and the expectations that come with this sort of role mean to you?

The responsibility of being in an ensemble like this in the DC Universe, particularly with this project…I had not played the game upon which the movie is based, but I had heard about it. When I got the script, I was floored, especially by the beginning of the first act. I was just blown away because I did not necessarily know all the plot points to the storyline or the cutscenes from the video game. So I was like, ‘Wow, this is pretty awesome and it’s awesome to be part of this project.’ I guess that’s where my head was at when I was first cast.

We’ve obviously seen Ryan Reynolds play Green Lantern, but Hal isn’t necessarily one of those characters with a definitive voiceover actor; did you find yourself looking anywhere for inspiration and, either way, what was the process of finding his voice like for you? 

Honestly, because of what you said about there not being a definitive actor…I mean, The Joker has a sound. There have been 10 - 12 actors who have voiced him in animated projects, let’s say, but I had a little bit more freedom than them. When in doubt, all the acting training comes in and wherever there’s room for you to inject yourself or whatever, your instrument is the sound you can bring, so I just did that. The only other thing I could say other than bringing my own voice to it was I obviously had great help from Wes Gleason, the voice and casting director on the project. Whenever I deviated from…I don’t remember any time deviating from a DC Hal Jordan or Green Lantern kind of vibe, but whenever it was too intense or not intense enough, I had great help in Wes Gleason. 

I know you’re not in the recording booth with your fellow actors, but having seen the film now, how does it feel to see your Green Lantern sharing the screen with icons like Batman, Wonder Woman, The Joker, and so on? 

That was [Laughs]...that was pretty rad, I’ve gotta tell you. I was sitting there watching it with my wife and there’s that scene where…it’s the kind of thing with these big ensembles where the voice cast and these big pieces with the Justice League and DC Universe, you crave those little, tiny moments. Near the beginning of the film after the tragedy has struck and The Joker has played his evil trick, Superman is flying and Green Lantern flanks him off to the side. He just has that moment of trying to talk him down and talk some sense into him. When you have lines like that, it’s really cool, especially when Superman pulls that thing when he rips the ring off Hal Jordan and I’m falling. It was a neat scene because Superman is on the warpath, but he doesn’t forget after neutralising Green Lantern’s power for a moment, he saves Hal. Then, there’s that sweet moment I get to have with Clark when he begins to depart after landing me, begging him not to do something he eventually does in the film. That was a cool moment sitting there watching that and I got one of those small moments which was really, really cool. 

Hal is pulled from the battlefield by the Guardians of Oa, but as a human and a member of the Justice League, do you think having to head back to the Corps and leave the planet is one he probably agonised over?

I think so. What would it take to…Aquaman also says ‘I’m out. I’m not part of this’ and then Green Lantern says, ‘I’m out too.’ What sort of agonising thing has to happen in the Justice League where there’s such a schism and such a split where Earth isn’t even where you want to be! [Laughs] That was an interesting part of the movie. 

There’s obviously only so much story that can be crammed into an adaptation like this one, so are you hopeful the opportunity might crop up to return as this version of Hal and for that whole Green Lantern Corps war with Superman to play out? 

I would love it, yeah. Absolutely. 

This is such a great character and I know there’s a solo film coming this year, but I can imagine you’re particularly keen to revisit him after scratching the surface here?

I agree. It was a pretty cool surface to scratch, I’ve got to say, man. 
 

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On another note, like many Marvel fans, I loved What If…?, and was wondering what your experience of following in Chris Pratt’s footsteps to play Peter Quill was like? 

That was really fun. It was kind of cool because in that first episode, there was only a little tiny bit, but I got to go hang out at the sound studio. It wasn’t a very long session, but I got to play and the voice director let me try it a couple of different ways and try this, try that. There were sounds I don’t even remember because there was just that ‘Sorry, we’re closed,’ but I’m sitting there going, ‘This is kinda cool! I’m an alternative Peter Quill, formerly the Star-Lord [Laughs] in this iteration of the universe as The Watcher watches this parallel Peter Quill.’ It was really, really cool. I can’t recall if it was for the session for the first episode or the second one, but there was this cool moment of humming or bopping along to a song that was on the playlist of Peter Quill in this alternate universe. For me, that was a ‘Holy crap’ moment that was just really, really cool. I guess that’s all I can say about that, man. 

It must be pretty special for you to see your Peter sharing the screen with the late, great Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa Star-Lord?

Absolutely, yeah. How fulfilling it has to be to watch…he’s gone from us now, but he lives on and there he is. 

What a year for you as an actor; on the one hand, to play Green Lantern and, I know this version of Peter isn’t Star-Lord, but talk about two great cosmic cowboys!

[Laughs] Absolutely. That’s a great way to put it, man. I like that. 

I know you’re no stranger to this DC Universe, but are there still any characters you’re hoping could come your way down the line? 

You know, I can’t think that far ahead, man! Honestly, each role is a different adventure. I do have to say, and you mentioned this early on in our discussion, with some characters, and some iconic superhero characters, whether it’s DC or Marvel, there are those that have that voice that’s going to be scrutinised and it brings with it…well, when I was a kid, look at Batman: The Animated Series. For me, Kevin Conroy is Batman. I’d either end up trying to sound like him and not be like him or risk something by being something completely different and not getting the part in the audition process! With certain other characters, there’s so much freedom in it, it’s really, really cool. I have to say, whatever character comes down to me in an audition, each one has its own adventure. I hadn’t predicted that I would be in this piece and when it happened, it was a cool ride. I don’t really have a character in mind that I could really pin down because each one is its own special thing. 

Of course, and it must be really special with these voiceover roles to dip in and out of this world to play so many characters and experiment with your voice and bring these different heroes and villains to life? 

Exactly, yeah. There’s such freedom in voiceover [Laughs]. I absolutely adore the freedom of the storylines, conflicts, and adventures you can have. In this particular case, as you mentioned, you’re right. I was alone in the sound studio, but there are opportunities with some projects where some portion of the cast can be along a battery of microphones and there can be three to five other actors in there and it would be cool to do that one time. I don’t know, man, to me it’s just such a great career. 

ALSO READ: Producer Rick Morales On Superman Breaking Bad And Adapting The Comics
ALSO READ: Director Matt Peters Talks His Superman Fandom And The Movie's Epic Cast 
ALSO READ: Yuri Lowenthal On Balancing Three Roles As Mirror Master, Flash, And Shazam
ALSO READ: Writer Ernie Altbacker On How He Adapted The DC Epic And Sequel Potential
ALSO READ: Edwin Hodge On Moral Complexities Of Mister Terrific & Monstrous Killer Croc
 

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