With the massive news of CD Projekt RED teaming up with Anonymous Content for a live-action Cyberpunk 2077 project, things are getting exciting. As is the case with any video game, it’s easy to imagine actual actors and actresses playing these familiar roles. This is no exception, and there are obvious stars that would be a treat to see play iconic Cyberpunk roles.
As for V, it’s truly unclear if the male or female version of the character is going to be the choice here. Even with that uncertainty, there are terrific ideas either way. Before we get started, though, just a disclaimer that this is a wishlist, and there’s no guarantee that most or all of these characters will make it into the live-action adaptation.
- Aaron Paul as Male V
- Jack Quaid as Male V
- Florence Pugh as Female V
- Hailee Steinfeld as Female V
- Dave Bautista as Jackie
- Hiroyuki Sanada as Takemura
- Keanu Reeves as Johnny Silverhand
- Keri Russell as Rogue
- Karen Fukuhara as Hanako Arisaka
- Daniela Melchior as Judy
- Rosario Dawson as Panam
- Dylan McDermott as Vik Vector
- Margot Robbie as Misty
Aaron Paul as Male V
Breaking Bad proved that Aaron Paul has all the possible acting chops to take on the character of V. Between the emotion shown in the series’ most tense moments and the more reserved Jesse scenes, this is almost a no-brainer. A very important part to V is finding someone who can do the action and seriousness, but also the humorous side that can be found through certain dialogue choices.
If you at any point doubt this pick, get your hands on a copy of Come and Find Me, where Aaron Paul plays the boyfriend of a girl who one day simply up and vanishes. The range found in that film will absolutely sell you on him as V.
Jack Quaid as Male V
Ever since his grand debut as Hughie on the live-action adaptation of The Boys, Jack Quaid has proven he can truly bring the talent. While serving as much of the gritty show’s comedic relief, it is obvious he has the right comedic timing and dexterity to make sure V isn’t a brooding mess post-Konpeki Plaza.
At the same time, the recent superpowered turn to his character has proven that he is also great when he has to get his hands dirty. The best example of his acting range (besides The Boys) is most definitely in Scream 5, but I don’t want to spoil anything, so see it for yourself.
Florence Pugh as Female V
As someone who spent all of their playthroughs as female V (Cherami Leigh is a fantastic voice actress), these choices weren’t as easy to decide. However, our first has to be Florence Pugh, simply because she is exactly what the role of V needs. From her terrific emotional performance in Midsommar to her big action role in Black Widow, she’d be perfect for V.
Every single role she has, she completely nails. For instance, Florence Pugh was the only reason Don’t Worry Darling was watchable, which is saying something. If you doubt more of her comedic talent, I very much recommend Fighting with My Family.
Hailee Steinfeld as Female V
The role that absolutely puts Hailee Steinfeld on the map for me as V would have to be her big breakout in True Grit. She had to keep up with acting juggernauts Jeff Bridges, Josh Brolin, and Matt Damon and absolutely held her own. The heart of V is definitely taking whatever is thrown at you and giving it back tenfold without letting it take them down.
As mentioned, True Grit is an excellent way to see Hailee Steinfeld’s acting range, but she’s been in some incredibly decent movies. The best picks are likely Edge of Seventeen or Bumblebee because somehow the latter was an actually good Transformer movie. Probably due to her performance.
Dave Bautista as Jackie
Being real with you, there’s honestly not anyone else who can do this role to the same degree that Dave Bautista could/will. Though most people know him mostly as Drax and his terrific comedic relief acting, that’s not all that he can bring to Jackie. His serious roles are honestly more impactful than anything he has done in comedies, whether it be the Guardians films or Stuber.
That’s not even to mention the physicality of the role itself. Dave Bautista is a big guy and perfectly fits the imposing statue of Jackie. I’m not sure I have ever heard him do a similar accent in a movie, but there’s no reason to believe he can’t nail that. If you want to check him out in a serious action role, Bushwick has everything you need.
Hiroyuki Sanada as Takemura
The role of Takemura demands a soft-spoken but still sincere and stern actor to truly play the role correctly. With that in mind, there isn’t anyone better than Hiroyuki Sanada. If you have seen Bullet Train, you know exactly what I am talking about. He’s got the samurai personality and toughness down to a T while also definitely capable of Takemura’s dry deadpan in response to V’s jokes.
62 years old (at the time of writing), he’s at the perfect place in his life for a wizened old soldier who has lost his master through treachery and betrayal. There shouldn’t be any concern for his physical ability for the role either, after the amazing showing that was his part in John Wick: Chapter 4.
Keanu Reeves as Johnny Silverhand
Yes, this entry feels rather pointless, I know, but there’s no better way to thoroughly gush about how perfect Keanu Reeves is at the role already. There’s no one else who could ever do this role justice, and that’s not just because you’re used to hearing his voice come out of your speakers/headset over the game’s 30+ hour playthroughs.
There simply just isn’t a Cyberpunk 2077 live-action anything if Keanu Reeves doesn’t play a big role, especially not if they do choose to follow the story of V. Though Keanu has proven his action days aren’t behind him (another shoutout to John Wick: Chapter 4), Silverhand isn’t a physical role. As the ghost in V’s particular machine, all he has to do is stand, brood, and be abrasive.
Keri Russell as Rogue
The point to Rogue isn’t that she was some badass Edgerunner who has lived past her prime by sheer luck. Instead, she is proven to be simply a survivor who was smart enough to know what she needed to change to get out ahead of Night City. She is tough as nails, sure, but it is her brain that got her what she has.
Considering Keri Russel’s intelligent, savvy role as Elizabeth Jennings in The Americans, she is perfect for this role. If you haven’t watched the series, you certainly should, as you will see the right characteristics that make her the right (and perfect) choice for Rogue.
Karen Fukuhara as Hanako Arisaka
Yep, yet another star from The Boys who would be perfect for a different kind of adaptation. Though Karen Fukuhara doesn’t speak in The Boys, her performance is by no means weakened by it. Instead, she is excellently emotive and, at the same time, terrifyingly deadly. This does rather prove that The Boys is an excellent showcase of the best stars on TV/streaming at the moment.
Not to drop any spoilers, but there’s not too much of Hanako in the story until basically the very end. However, it is when she shows up that things drop off the rails, and her presence leads to one of the most creative endings out of all the possibilities in Cyberpunk. There’s no one better for the role, and those who have gone through The Devil ending know what I mean.
Daniela Melchior as Judy
Of the big names on this list, Daniela Melchior doesn’t have as much to her filmography. However, what’s actually there is definitely worth giving her a shot at a solid portrayal of Judy Alvarez. If you have seen the more recent Suicide Squad, she played Rat-Catcher 2 and did an excellent job around greats like Idris Elba and Margot Robbie.
Since then, she has further shown off her skills in Fast X, and she plays a role in the upcoming Road House remake. This same early career position makes her perfect for the not-always-confident Judy, but this casting would certainly make her storyline resonate just as much as it did in the game. At the very least, give us the awesome underwater diving section in live-action!
Rosario Dawson as Panam
Okay, so this might not quite fit age-wise, but Rosario Dawson has the talent to really breathe the right amount of life into the role of the Nomad queen. While Panam’s actual action segments are rather limited, that doesn’t mean Rosario Dawson won’t be able to dish it out when needed, and the Ahsoka series has shown that incredibly well.
If you aren’t sold on this casting choice, as with the rest, there are terrific examples to build your confidence. The first would be Sin City (and its sequel), where her performance as Gail will certainly inspire you. Otherwise, just stay updated on Ahsoka, as she is clearly giving that series her all.
Dylan McDermott as Vik Vector
For the longest time, I very much hoped that Dylan McDermott would get to play Nathan Drake in some live-action adaptation. While that obviously didn’t materialize, the same acting abilities that would make him great for that role fit perfectly for Vik Vector. Vik is old and wizened by the time Cyberpunk starts, but it is clear he led an exciting life before he settled down.
Dylan McDermott would play the role with the perfect amount of charm and intelligence. He’d certainly perfectly deliver the feeling of a father figure watching their favorite kid fade away. While there are tons of exemplary films to suggest here to back up my point, Freezer has to be the best choice, and it’s very worth a viewing or two.
Margot Robbie as Misty
I shouldn’t have to sell this one that hard, especially considering the accent she sports in the game is honestly pretty close to Margot Robbie’s as Harley Quinn. Yes, it’s a much smaller role than someone like Margot Robbie deserves. However, there are so many deep, interesting characters that you gotta give even a smaller role to a great star to let them transform the character into so much more.
Margot Robbie has terrific range, so she’s the perfect actress to take Misty and make the character shine, even though in the base game, most players probably forget about her once Jackie dies. In a surprise, Misty does play a part in one of Phantom Liberty’s new endings that makes a massive impact on the story of the game and the understanding of V, so it would be nice to get a piece of that.