Jon Bernthal has wrestling fans wondering if he'll play a part in the upcoming Hulk Hogan biopic. On May 30, the 44-year-old actor, known for his roles in The Walking Dead and The Punisher, shared a vintage photograph of the WWE and WCW icon on his Instagram. While Bernthal shares photos of entertainment legends from time to time — such as DMX and Waylon Jennings — this one felt a bit random. Some on social media are speculating it was a tease of Bernthal joining the Hogan movie, which is in the works at Netflix.
Chris Hemsworth is attached to star as the Hulkster himself (whose real name is Terry Bollea), so the Baby Driver actor wouldn't be in the title role. Followers fired off a few suggestions of wrestlers that Bernthal could portray, including Bruno Sammartino, "Macho Man" Randy Savage and Scott Hall, also known as Razor Ramon. Hogan and Hall famously appeared in the WCW/WWE stable the New World Order (nWo) throughout the '90s, but the Netflix movie is rumored to follow Hogan's rise to fame. So, Hall might be out of the question, but the others are plausible fan casts. Sammartino and Hogan crossed pasts during the later's early years; Hogan and Savage were tag team champs and rivals during their '80s WWF runs.
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News of the Hogan move dates back to February 2019, when The Hollywood Reporter revealed the Thor actor would be teaming up with director Todd Phillips (Joker, The Hangover) and writers Scott Silver (Joker, The Fighter) and John Pollono (Stronger). Philips, Hemsworth, Bradley Cooper, Michael Sugar and Eric Bischoff will serve as producers. Hogan — who is notably still taking heat for a clip of him using the N-word that leaked in 2015 — is an executive producer, and he optioned his life rights for the project.
As for status updates on the project, Hogan has regularly referenced the project and Hemsworth's involvement, often noting Hemsworth's ripped physique. Hemsworth has also confirmed his involvement in interviews. Bischoff, the former head of WCW and longtime TV exec/Hogan confidant, told listeners of his podcast 83 Weeks in November 2020 that COVID-19 restrictions were slowing down the project.
My brother has that Hogan Pump on Jack,looks like he could slam Andre brother HH pic.twitter.com/VEscB93crm— Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) June 3, 2021
"The biggest holdup right now, folks, is COVID," Bischoff said, per ComicBook.com. "This is a big movie, by the way. It's a wrestling-based movie. So, guess what you need to have in a wrestling-based movie—a crowd! Where are you going to do that? You can't even have ten people at your house for Thanksgiving right now. So, until that part of it is figured out, it's likely that this project is going to stay kind of right where it is, which is really far down the line. I don't want to sound like it's not going to happen. It's going to happen."