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John Ary Says Let's Talk More EXPENDABLES!!

The Expendables 2 is such a strange movie, filled with odd performances, campy dialogue and lots of old guys running around with big guns.  One of the aspects I’ve always wondered about though is Trench’s team.   Arnold Schwarzenegger references his squad, but we never see them on camera.  I assume the group is made up of several action stars from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, just like Barney’s Expendables.  So that got me thinking... Who would I cast for Schwarzenegger’s rag tag wild bunch of mercs.  In choosing my team, I used a few criteria... They have to be alive.  They need to represent the classic action films and TV series that The Expendables 2 parodies.  They have to be somewhat affordable.  (The chances of bringing The Expendables 3 in under budget while casting the likes of Harrison Ford, Clint Eastwood or Jackie Chan seem almost impossible).  And they have to serve some sort of niche on the team.  We don’t need another set of muscles as Schwarzenegger has that spot covered.  So here we go, my 5 top choices for Trench Mauser's team of Expendables...



1) Let’s start first with the pilot.  Stallone flies the Expendables around in an old cargo plane armed with guns and a canon.  I’m guessing Trench needs the skills of an experienced pilot to cart his group around the world in a similar mode of transportation.  I nominate Jan-Michael Vincent.  The former World’s Greatest Athlete and protege to Charles Bronson’s Mechanic has better credentials for handling a helicopter or plane than anyone else in the Expendables universe.  As the pilot of TV’s most technically advanced helicopter Airwolf, Jan-Michael Vincent has proven that he has the chops to drop off and pick up the guys in the most dire of situations.


2) Every crack mercenary team needs an asshole, someone who sets the bar high for being a scummy low-life merc. I’m going with Martin Kove for this slot.  As the evil dojo master John Kreese in the Karate Kid series, he proved himself a master of karate while being a grade-A dick.  He further solidified his spot by refusing to pick-up John Rambo from the jungles of Vietnam in First Blood Part II.   Assholes make the other guys on the team look braver and more heroic.  Plus, the asshole usually is the easiest to kill-off (i.e. Lundgren in the first Expendables movie before the producers changed their minds about his character’s fate).  It’s a pretty important niche and Kove fits the bill perfectly.


3) The martial artist does a lot of the dirty work in these sorts of movies, providing athleticism and some of the best hand-to-hand action scenes in the film. For the martial artist role, I would go after a real life tough guy... someone like Don “The Dragon” Wilson.  This 11-time world kickboxing champion proved himself in the ring and at your local video store with an established library of direct-to-video action movies.  He built a strong following in the 90’s with 8 entries in Roger Corman’s Bloodfist series and several other low-budget releases.  He can put together a good hand-to-hand fight scene without upstaging his more famous co-stars and he can throw a kick about as well as anyone on screen.  


4) The wildcard plays an important role in the team dynamic.  Donald Sutherland in Kelly’s Heroes, Telly Savalas in The Dirty Dozen and Dwight Schultz as Howling Mad Murdock on The A-Team all brought an explosive element to their squads.  You never knew exactly how they will react in a dangerous situation or when their teammates need them the most.  I would like to nominate “Hot Rod” Roddy Piper to fill this niche.  There’s a lot to love about Hot Rod’s unique brand of crazy.  It’s intense, intimidating and uses just enough logic to let you know that’s he’s not totally insane.   

5) And finally, Trench needs a best friend, a confidant who backs up decisions and makes fun of him when he screws up.  Much like Statham with Stallone, this person needs to have a good repoire with Schwarzenegger.  For this role, I look towards Carl Weathers.  We already know the two have good chemistry from their work together on Predator.  Weathers makes the perfect second-in-command for Trench and a guy with his own track record kicking ass.


Well, those are a few of my old guy picks to join Trench Mauser’s squad of mercenaries in another Expendables movie.  What are yours?  Leave your choices below and for more interviews, features, exclusive content and reviews subscribe to the AICN Youtube channel and follow me on Twitter.



Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:08 a.m. CST

    Yeah why *isn't* Carl Weathers in this already?

    by D.Vader

    Or Bill Duke for that matter?

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:09 a.m. CST


    by Kharl Pitman

    what about Shatner!

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:13 a.m. CST


    by Craig

    Pretty sure Sly is mad at Weathers for asking for too much money to use his likeness in "Rocky Balboa".

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:14 a.m. CST

    Tommy Lee Jones? Donnie Yen? Good call on Weathers. BUT --

    by Valaquen


  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:14 a.m. CST

    Jan-Michael Vincent...

    by schlockthemonkey

    He used to be my neighbor. Good guy and all that... but, Even he doesn't know who HE is anymore.

  • I nominate Iko Uwais from The Raid.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:14 a.m. CST


    by ultragoregrind

    Carl Weathers NEEDS to be in Expendables 3 at the very least. No matter, I just picked up and watched the Director's Cut of Expendables on bluray and i swear, that movie just makes me grin at times. Can't wait to see #2.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:20 a.m. CST

    Great title to the article

    by Bedhead7

    Love that stuttering you put in there on purpose to make the article seem fo real.

  • Theirs alot to work with and I agree that the 3rd installment will have to be a bit unorthodox. Perhaps 2 or 3 teams of Mercenaries fighting over 1 job. ( Similiar to todays economy ? a Employers market, 10 job seekers fighting over 1 job opening ? ) Then after killing each other off, some at least, they end up joining at the end for a joint cause. Or are all called upon secretly from the US government, ala opening of Rambo 2, to locate or dispose of a threat.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:28 a.m. CST

    Michael Beck from The Warriors

    by Chanoc

    Carl Weathers (off course) Ralph Macchio (Really, he can play a communications/computer whiz) Lorenzo Lamas Bill Paxton (good chemistry with arnold in true lies) Michael Biehn (Aliens) The Chic who played Vazquez in aliens (would be cool to have them three over from aliens) Michael Beck (The Warriors) James Remar (The Warriors)

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:32 a.m. CST

    Michael mutha fucking Biehn!!

    by _SnakePlissken_

    say no more... also Kurt Russel of course! and Bill Duke

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:36 a.m. CST

    Woody Allen, Jesse Eisenberg, Shia LeBooof and Michael Cera

    by loafroaster

  • ...sweep the leg.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:48 a.m. CST


    by John Ary

    Thanks for the heads up. Fixed.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:59 a.m. CST

    Bring Back the Predator Cast!!

    by Mike

    Just bring back the cast from Predator: Carl Weathers Bill Duke Jesse Ventura Sonny Landham Richard Chaves Shane Black You can have political jokes between Jessie, Arny, and Landham since they all ran for some sort of office.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11 a.m. CST

    We need a Vern review.

    by Doctor_Strangepork

    Wait, how is Steven Seagal not in this?

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:09 a.m. CST

    I'd swap out Jan-Michael Vincent for one of two people...

    by Bill C.

    1. Cynthia Rothrock 2. Steve James

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:16 a.m. CST

    Michael Dudikoff

    by fan291

    I'd like to see The American Ninja on screen one last time

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Miles O'Keeffe!!!

    by Eric Shea

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:34 a.m. CST

    Michael Jai White! Nuff said

    by Joey Stars

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Another team would be fun with:

    by professor murder

    'No nonsense' Kurt Russell 'To the point' Carl Weathers 'Martial Arts ass kicking' Michael Jai White 'Mouthy' Ice-T 'Get outta my way' Roddy Piper 'Wise cracking' Christian Slater 'Techie' Emilio Estevez 'Tough guy' Chuck Liddell 'Never listens and does it his way' Peter Weller/Eric Roberts 'Leader' Danny Glover If you have to have a woman in there, Michelle Yeoh.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:37 a.m. CST

    I second (or third) Team Predator.

    by adeceasedfan

    Everyone else are a bunch of slack jawed faggots.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:41 a.m. CST

    Expendables 3 needs the sexual tyranosaurus himself...

    by Dingleberry Jones

    Jesse "The Body" Ventura. Keith David and Carl Weathers would be a nice touch as well. I could care less to see Ford or Eastwood, I think you have to have at least 2 Direct-to-DVD movies under your belt to be an Expendable. Matter of fact, that should be the rule.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Redshirt...nice one, Cynthia Rothrock. She gets my vote.

    by rhizomeman

  • I had never thought specifically about another team under Arnold's command. If they went with casting like you are suggesting, the movie wouldn't have to give lame backstories to each of these guys or anything...just have them show up and fight. No need to add extra bloat, just introduce them and let them do their jobs. Thanks, man. PS: Spot on on the various roles needed to fill in a team. I LOL'd. PPS: Yeah, not only do we never see Arnold's team, but where did Arnold disappear to in the opening sequence? Bro just vanishes...

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:50 a.m. CST

    You forgot the quiet, "hunter/tracker" killer-type...

    by Darth Macchio

    Brilliantly portrayed by Sonny Landham in the first Predator film (altho he wasn't too "quiet" but still..a hunter/tracker type for sure). I'm thinking Bill Dukes would be perfect for this if he's in any reasonable shape. If not Dukes, Robert Patrick did a hunter/tracker role for a smaller serial-killer movie a ways back - he'd be great as well.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:50 a.m. CST

    I PITY THE FOOLS WHO DON'T CHOOSE MR. T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    by wackybantha

    MR. T!!!!!!! GOSH DARN IT!!!!!!!!!!

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:51 a.m. CST

    My choice SMASH!!!

    by Cinemaniax

    I vouch for Lou Ferrigno as some sort of enforcer for whoever would play the main bad guy.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 12:21 p.m. CST

    Michael knight, aka the Hoff, with Kitt

    by Cowman

    Make it a chase movie like mad max

  • I seem to remember Weathers pissing him off by not allowing him to use any Apollo Creed footage into "Rocky Balboa" unless he was paid sum really insane amount of money. Sly seemed really upset about that in an interview I read with him at the time of that film's release.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 12:26 p.m. CST

    Rutger Hauer as the next bad guy!!!

    by Brent

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 12:27 p.m. CST

    "some" really insane amount of money. Sorry.

    by Darth Mulder

  • Just one time!

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 12:47 p.m. CST

    Jesse Ventura over Carl Weathers any day

    by slone13

  • and lets not forget Airwolf. God knows what kind of shape he's in today, he had some big problems with 'the bottle'

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 1:17 p.m. CST

    Hulk F'N Hogan!

    by Eric Shea

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 1:39 p.m. CST

    Why TV stars?

    by john

    You say it needs to be TV and movie stars but other than Stone Cold in the first film, which of the actors had a big TV career (Other than maybe Chuck Norris, but that was well after his movie career)? My picks: Carl Weathers as the best friend, Steven Seagal as the rogue, Jackie Chan as the great hand-to-hand fighter, Kurt Russell as the knuckle-breaker, Ralph Macchio as the techie and Bridgette Neilson as the Femme Fatale who comes back for help every once in a while.

  • but a one-man wrecking machine

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 2:30 p.m. CST

    ExPendables 3 - New members & Plot

    by JoeHungg

    I'll just repeat my ramt from AB Kings review: Expendables 3 (Wet Dream Line-up) Director: John McTiernan DOP: Paul Veerhoven  Fight Choreographer: Isaac Florentine & Jackie Chan. Outline by James Cameron Script: Shane Black & Quentin Tarantino Potential New Players: Donnie Yen Jackie Chan Chow Yun Fat Michael Biehn Samuel Jackson John Travolta Nicolas Cage Bob Sapp (Vs. Terry Crews = Wow!) Michael Jai White (Vs. Donnie Yen) Ving Rhames Michael Clarke Duncan (Vs. Sly) Danny Trejo Woody Harrelson Pierce Brosnan Bruce Campbell Wesley Snipes Sammo Hung Patrick Kilpstrick  Clint Eastwood Michelle Yeoh Gina Carano Pam Grier Carla Gugino Salma Hayek Michelle Rodriquez Siqourney Weaver Synopsis: The Chinese and the russian mob joins forces to wrec havoc in Hong Kong. Three policemen and their families are targeted (Jackie Chan, Chow Yun Fat & Donnie Yen).. Jet Li must return home to help his estranged cop brother, against an old enemy. He brings a few friends...  EXPENDABLES 3: Blood Money The Battle for Hong Kong goes down tonight. 

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 2:37 p.m. CST

    So you basically piss on the film in your opening sentence

    by CherryValance

    and then you want to tell them what to do with the third one? Really? EXPENDABLES 2 doesn't parody anything. Did you even see it? Oh wait I just found your review. Oh yes that's right. You're an idiot. | Is this it then? None of the old guard reviewing it? I guess everyone else has moved on and AICN has been left to these guys. Pity.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Heres my team if anyone cares...

    by kindofabigdeal

    Carl Weathers Jessie Ventura Michale Biehn Kurt Russel Jackie Chan/Tony Ja/Iko(dude from Raid) Nathan Jones/Bautista Eastwood should just camoe as a really important person who is respected.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:36 p.m. CST

    One person I never hear to get picked....

    by Tommy

    ADAM BALDWIN! Come on.. he's Animal Mother! Gun's a'blazin'

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:37 p.m. CST

    All Brit mercenary team?

    by MaxCalifornia.

    I dunno how the plot would work, maybe EXP3 has to do with Statham's character's past, but I think an all British team would be fun, let's say : -Pierce Brosnan -Timothy Dalton -Vinnie Jones -Idris Elba (is this too low rent for him?) -Sean Bean -Colin Salmon -Ray Stevenson (OK, Irish, but so's Pierce) -and Michael Caine as the leader behind it all (hey might happen, Stallone has worked with him twice, could call him up for a week's work, etc)

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:56 p.m. CST

    cherryvalance (SPOILER WARNING)

    by John Ary

    Parody = An imitation of the style of a particular writer, artist, or genre with deliberate exaggeration for comic effect. The best example of this in The Expendables 2 is "The Lone Wolf." Chuck Norris, armed with a couple of automatic SMG's, pops up from nowhere to take out a battalion of faceless troops, blows up a tank, tells a "Chuck Norris" joke and vanishes. I would say his initial scene in the film is best characterized as a parody of 80's action movies.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 3:59 p.m. CST

    Michael Fucking Chiklis for EX3.

    by Logan_1973

    End discussion.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:07 p.m. CST

    Trench's Troublemakers

    by Onitafreak

    I had the same idea awhile back and posted a crappy video that showed my team: What ya think?

  • Adding "fucking" to a shitty actors name does not a badass make.

  • Those are the kind of class actors they should be bringing back for a small walk on cameo in the movies.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Have you not seen Chiklis in THE SHIELD?

    by Logan_1973

    Shitty actor my ass.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 4:48 p.m. CST

    John Ary actually wrote something? I approve!

    by Fries Against

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 5:42 p.m. CST

    Shitty actor?

    by Inspector71

    You obviously haven't watched 'The Shield'. And if you have and still think that, you are retarded. But seriously, watch the 'The Shield'

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 7:30 p.m. CST

    Yes, 'Action Jackson' already!

    by ThulsaBoom

    Everytime Dolph and Sly talk to each other in Expendables 1 I find myself saying, "God it is AWESOME that Drago and Rocky became friends and co-workers later on in life. They literally become those characters again, IN A GOOD WAY. Bring on Apollo Creed. Carl Weathers has history with Arnold AND Sly.

  • Or maybe the villain.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 7:33 p.m. CST

    And yeah, Roddy Piper...

    by ThulsaBoom

    ...not the greatest action credentials, but there's always 'They Live.'

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 10:19 p.m. CST

    Haven't watched The Sheild....

    by john

    So maybe I'm not giving him his fair due. I just know him as the really shitty Thing, The Commish and the guy who calls a hooker from Seinfelds apartment. Regardless, he seems more a TV tough guy and not in the same category as these guys, but then again, with Randy Coulture, Stone Cold and Liam Hemsworth in the cast, I guess anyone can be.

  • Aug. 17, 2012, 11:03 p.m. CST

    a shame David Carradine passed

    by _SnakePlissken_

    he would of been awesome.. just watch the Cannon film "POW The Escape" 80's B grade magic

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 12:05 a.m. CST

    Tom Hardy, Willem Dafoe, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Charlie Sheen, Hugo Weaving

    by Aaron Schweitzer

    Levitt - pilot Sheen - asshole Weaving - martial arts Dafoe - wildcard Hardy - friend

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 2:27 a.m. CST

    Too bad they didn't get Ernest Borgnine for the first one

    by Crimson Dynamo

    even if it was just flying a helicopter or sitting behind a desk


  • Aug. 18, 2012, 5:44 a.m. CST


    by Meadowe

    he looks like James Dean and could sell a good fight...even with a bucket on his head!

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 8:04 a.m. CST

    All Brit mercentary team is an awesome idea, MaxCali

    by DaddyP69

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 8:08 a.m. CST

    Stephen Lang as the villain!

    by DaddyP69

  • Aug. 18, 2012, 10:56 p.m. CST

    Jan-Michael Vincent

    by John

    Liked him in Damnation Alley, Hooper, and Airwolf of course, but last time I saw him was 12 or so years ago when Howard Stern's show was still on E! and he just looked bad, so as time has gone on I doubt he is in any shape physicly or mentally to do anything. I seem to recall hearing Airwolf wasn't cancelled so much over ratings as it was over Jan's conduct (coming to work late or not at all, and when he did he was high/drunk or both). Cynthia Rothrock needs to be in the next one if there is a next one. And how about Gary Busey?

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 7:52 a.m. CST

    Ray Winstone

    by john j rambo

    There's gotta be room for the 'Daddy'

  • Any everyday action movie fan will instantly know who Jason Statham and Jet Li are. Besides "Apollo Creed" and maybe "that guy from Karate Kid", there's no one on your list that's gonna get people excited. What percentage of Expendables viewers are going to be fans of Airwolf? One of the things that is great about Expendables 1 is that it hits so many sweet spots of the 18-34 male demographic. <BR><BR> Sly - 80s action.<BR> Statham - 90s action.<BR> Jet Li - Hong Kong/martial arts<BR> Stone Cold - WWE<BR> Randy Couture - UFC<BR> Terry Crews - the Old Spice guy<BR> <BR> IMO all the sequels need to have a bullseye on these sweet spots. What exactly does a guy from the TV show Airwolf hit? It's not going to put butts in seats - its not going to get everyday action fans buzzing on any level.<BR><BR> One of the misses of Expendables 2 was Scott Adkins as Van Damme's #2 guy. YOU might know who he is, but most of the audience is going to see him as just some random guy. They should have gotten someone like Kimbo Slice (internet sensation) or Kurt Angle (WWE, gold medalist) to hit one of those sweet spots to get the male audience excited.<BR><BR> IMO, when filling out Trench's team, Sly and the studio need to think to themselves, "what are we missing?"....and hit those sweet spots they haven't hit yet.

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 9:49 p.m. CST

    How about Jeff fucking Speakman??

    by GoFuckYourself

  • Aug. 19, 2012, 9:50 p.m. CST

    Or what about "Sully" from Commando??

    by GoFuckYourself

    Remember when I told you I would kill you last? I lied... and Go Fuck Yourself!