Outdated: Please refer to Fan Concepts: Casting an X-23 Live Action Origin Feature Part Who Knows & Dream Movie: X-23 Daughter of Wolverine as they are up to date for the foreseeable future.
Modern Actresses that could pull off X-23 for her own origin Feature film.
Sorry, this means no Summer Glau, no Eliza Dushku, no Mandy Moore, and no Kristin Kreuk.
As much as I adore their work. They are just too old for an origins piece. Maybe if this was an X-Force film. We need someone who can do a passable 12-14 year old girl. That's just outside their current range as the last school roles they played were all seniors, 18 years old at the minimum. Mandy Moore (she was a tough choice to cut from Laura, as she still exudes youth, but she does carry an air of 17 minimum to her look) hasn't done a teen role since 2004, in which she played a High School Senior. Dushku made this quite apparent as well in Tru Calling where she even called herself a 'mature highschooler' trying to blend in with teens during one of her repeat day tasks. Glau on the other hand, has made herself seem perfect for the role of Dr. Kinney after her portrayal in DollHouse as one of the 'mad' scientists. Kreuk, while having the stunt training from Chun-Li, has an air of a college woman, as seen recently in Chuck.
Any of those four would make for a perfect Dr. Sarah Kinney though.
So who does that leave for an X-23 movie?
These six, that's right within their range.
Personally, so far my vote goes to Selena Gomez. She's got the softer skin that works, the defined eyebrows, and a more innocent, soft look to her that just fits the dichotomy of the character's own innocence and violence. Doesn't hurt that it also plays up to the parallels of creating a pop star. She also has star power to draw in an audience that otherwise would have missed or ignored the trailers to tell if this was their kind of movie or not. Disney owning Marvel makes this more likely, and honestly perfect for the symbolism and parallels the film could contain. It also gives a potential air of indie film that mocks the teeny bopper genre. Lots of levels with that casting that can work in the movies style flavor and symbolism.
Victoria Justice works quite well for many of the same reasons as Selena Gomez. She has star power, drawing power, the more effeminate innocent appeal, and she can play up the parallel of a pop star as well thanks to nickelodeon raising her in the limelight. She also has mild stunt training thanks to "The Boy Who Cried Werewolf." The conflict of Nickelodeon and Disney may be an issue.
Lucy Hale would honestly be my second choice after Selena Gomez. She's got the look just like Gomez does. She also matches up to the parallels like Gomez, and Justice do being a child star herself. Thanks to her recent run on Pretty Little Liars, we've also seen that she can pull off the innocence look quite well, just as she can switch to furious quickly as would be needed.
Her and Gomez could both give a performance that would be borderline hypnotic as the character herself is in the two origin miniseries. Their petite frames also yield an air of safety that could lul even the audience into a false sense of security, or for that matter, a sense of horror due to the child abuse nature of the first half of the story and Laura's creation. Hale is also a moderately Disney accessible star, as Pretty Little Liars is an ABC Family show.
Elise Gatien would be my third choice. She's got the look down almost perfect and fits all the criteria from conveying innocence to athletic prowess and appearing harmless in her demeanor. So far she's displayed the acting chops needed for this kind of role over in Cartoon Network's Tower Prep too as well as the stunt work that would be associated. The only problem here, would be the similiarities to the role she is already currently playing on Tower Prep. She also lacks any real star power behind her name as yet, but as she's displayed on screen so far, that could soon change.
Gia Mantegna of recent fame on Gigantic would also be one of my picks. She's got the look, though I know nothing of her acting skill. She was picked solely on looks alone.
Italia Ricci has already had some decent stunt training thanks to Unnatural History on Cartoon Network. Other than that she is an unknown to me on her potential.
Why the sudden talk of who's possible for Laura Kinney? Well that rant is coming soon that fully explains the recent (and previous!) girls who kick-ass trend in Hollywood, and why Fox Marvel needs to tap it now before it fades away for another few years like it has before.