The CW’s Arrow has been padding its superhero ranks for months now, with news that every character from The Atom to The Manhunter would be making an appearance on its upcoming third season, but all of that was just so the show could distract people while it worked on casting legendary DC villain—and the third season’s “big bad”—Ra’s al Ghul. Liam Neeson played the character in Christopher Nolan’s Batman movies, and he told MTV News recently that he’d jump back into Ra’s al Ghul’s weird facial hair “in a heartbeat” if he were asked to, but, shockingly, The CW has chosen not to take out another mortgage on its house in order to afford that. Instead, the network has hired a guy who is slightly less famous than Liam Neeson, which is to say that he’s barely famous at all: Australian actor Matt Nable.
Arrow’s Stephen Amell announced the news himself on Twitter, welcoming Nable to the show with a picture of Ra’s al Ghul that shows off just a hint of his muscled man-chest. Pictures of shirtless men is the preferred means of promoting new episodes of Arrow, after all. As for who this Nable guy is, his most high-profile role is probably that of Boss Johns in last year’s Riddick, but HitFix says he also briefly played professional rugby in Australia. That probably doesn’t have any impact on his acting ability, but it does suggest he might be able to handle a a few rounds with the Salmon Ladder. That’s all that matters. According to HitFix, Ra’s will make his first appearance in “The Magician,” the fourth episode of the show’s third season. He’ll be the one saying enigmatic things while wearing a flashy green cape.
In other Arrow casting news, Sin City’s Devon Aoki had to drop out of the show due to scheduling conflicts. She was set to appear as DC hero Katana in the new season, but the role will now be played by The Wolverine’s Rila Fukushima. Don’t count on her using the Salmon Ladder, though, since her character will be involved in next season’s flashback storyline—which takes place before it was built. Salmon Ladder will return to The CW on October 8.