Ridley – Benedict Cumberbatch
Aside from Samus Aran and Mother Brain, Ridley is the only other character on this list who doesn’t need much of an introduction. Ridley, alongside Bowser and Ganon, is easily one of the most recognizable video game villains among Nintendo’s many franchises. Although Mother Brain is often considered the main leader of the Space Pirates, only Ridley has appeared as a boss in every Metroid game to date.
Ridley is Samus’ archenemy, being the Space Pirate responsible for the death of her parents. Ridley is a massive and imposing being, looking like part-man, part-dragon, and part-pterodactyl. Furthermore, Ridley’s appearances in every Metroid game shows his uncanny knack for survival.
Aside from Samus and Commander Malkovich, the characters on this list would likely be portrayed in some form of CGI. This is especially true for Ridley. Thanks to the advancements in motion-capture technology, CGI characters can literally leap to life, provided the right talent is able to lift the role to the necessary heights.
Benedict Cumberbatch is perfect for the part. Thanks in part to his incredible acting, he was able to elevate a CGI character into an unforgettable and iconic role. Before The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, the most memorable CGI dragon was arguably Sean Connery’s Drago, from the 1996 film Dragonheart. However, Cumberbatch easily stole the show with the dragon Smaug, who was just as charming and witty as he was evil and terrifying.
Cumberbatch has excelled in too many roles to count, but he first gained international fame for his modern portrayal as detective Sherlock Holmes in the amazing BBC Sherlock TV series. He’s also demonstrated his talent as a villain when he played the deadly Khan Noonien Singh in Star Trek Into Darkness. Cumberbatch eventually landed the role of Doctor Stephen Strange, leading him to become a crucial character within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That trust in his acting ability that both Disney and Marvel Studios put into him should serve as a direct example to Nintendo. Just like Brie Larson, Cumberbatch being cast in a key role would be the best possible choice if Nintendo decided to bring Metroid to the big screen.
As mentioned earlier, it’s worth noting Sir Ridley Scott’s connection to the Metroid franchise, and there is no better or more direct example than Ridley himself, who apparently was named after Scott, a fitting tribute to how important Alien was to creating Metroid. Regarding this connection, another actor that could possibly fill Ridley’s “shoes” could be Russell Crowe, one of Scott’s most frequent collaborators. If the Metroid film actually does come to pass, Crowe wouldn’t top Cumberbatch on my list, but he is a strong alternative despite his CGI inexperience. And speaking of Scott’s connection…