Ben Barnes of ‘Shadow and Bone’ Was Almost in ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’

While Ben Barnes is beloved as General Kirigan/The Darkling in Netflix’s Shadow and Bone, he was nearly cast in the popular Disney+ series, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

Barnes rose to fame after playing Prince Caspian in The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. As fans might know from Shadow and Bone, Barnes has a specialty when it comes to playing antagonists.

Actor Ben Barnes in a black suit at the premiere of season 3 of HBO's 'Westworld' in 2020
Ben Barnes | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Ben Barnes nearly appeared in ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’

The first season of Shadow and Bone premiered on Netflix on April 23. A few days before the show dropped on Netflix, Barnes took part in an interview with Rotten Tomatoes.

During the interview, the actor revealed he almost joined the cast of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

“I’ll let you in on a secret. So Kari Skogland, who’s directing every episode of Falcon and Winter Soldier, directed every episode of a miniseries I did called Sons of Liberty where I played Sam Adams,” he said.

Barnes continued, “And she actually messaged me saying she was doing Winter Soldier and that there might be a character for me in it. And I was just about to do Shadow and Bone so I didn’t even know what it might be, and I still don’t know really.”

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What Ben Barnes thinks of John Walker in ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’

After Barnes revealed he almost joined the cast of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, he was asked if the role Skogland possibly had in mind for him to play was John Walker/Captain America/U.S. Agent. In The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Wyatt Russell played John Walker.

Barnes denied that he was ever in consideration for the role, saying, “No, I don’t think I’m that kind, I don’t think I’m the right casting for that.”

While Barnes does not think he was right for the part of John Walker, he does think the character is “brilliant.”

“I also think he’s kind of brilliant. He’s so likable for 5 minutes, and then instantly you’re just not on his side,” Barnes said. “Which I know from first hand how difficult it is to keep people on your side when you’re playing an antagonist.”

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Ben Barnes would love to play a Marvel character again

Before appearing as The Darkling in Shadow and Bone, Barnes played Billy Russo/Jigsaw in the Netflix series The Punisher, which was based on Marvel comic books.

Speaking with Rotten Tomatoes, Barnes shared that he thinks the role Skogland had in mind for him to play in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier was going to be created for him and was not a specific Marvel character that fans know.

“I think she was just telling me she was making it, probably,” Barnes said.

While it didn’t work out for Barnes to appear in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, the actor said he would be willing to play another Marvel character in the future on one condition.

“If I do Marvel again, I need it to be a good guy,” he said.