Tilda Swinton Reveals She’s Not in Constantine 2 — But Could Gabriel Still Return?

“I did hear a rumor...”

Warner Bros.
The Inverse Interview

Francis Lawrence’s Constantine was everything DC fans did not expect, from Keanu Reeves’ raven-haired Hellblazer to its incredibly loose adaptation of the beloved comics. But most unexpected of all was Tilda Swinton’s Gabriel, an androgynous, eerily beautiful interpretation of the archangel.

Whatever issues fans may take with the 2005 film, it was almost universally agreed that Swinton’s Gabriel rocked. Gabriel served as a menacing villain for Constantine, the final boss who secretly resented God’s favoritism towards humanity and wished to unleash Hell on Earth. At the end of the film, Gabriel is punished with the worst possible outcome: they become mortal.

Mortal, but not dead, a significant detail given the renewed talks for a long-awaited Constantine sequel. Director Francis Lawrence confirmed late last year that Constantine 2 is in the works, with Keanu Reeves set to reprise his role as the exorcist, and producer Akiva Goldsman writing the screenplay.

But what of other returning cast members? None of the original cast, which included Rachel Weisz and Shia LaBeouf, have yet been confirmed. But despite the potential for a now-mortal Gabriel to show up, Swinton was sorry to reveal to Inverse, in an interview ahead of her upcoming comedy-drama Problemista, that she almost certainly won’t be returning for Constantine 2.

“I’m sorry to have to tell you that I know nothing about this sequel except that I’ve heard it’s happening,” Swinton tells Inverse. “Unless they’re very late in calling me, I don’t think Gabriel will be flapping his/her wings.”

Visions of Gabriel

But Swinton, in confirming she wasn’t set to reprise her role as Gabriel, may have revealed a crucial plot detail for the sequel. “I did hear a rumor, I don’t know if you heard it, that Keanu was going to play Gabriel,” Swinton says. “Which would be beautiful.”

A cursory investigation didn’t uncover any such rumor, so we can only speculate that Swinton heard that through her Hollywood friends, which might suggest it’s more real than rumor. This could be our first hint of the plot of Constantine 2, which has no updates apart from Lawrence’s confirmation that it’s still being written, and that the team is aiming for an R-rating.

Now, this rumor teases an intriguing twist. Is Reeves playing double duty as Constantine and Gabriel? Or will Constantine face a new dilemma in becoming an angel or remaining a human on Earth? The end of Constantine did see him start ascending to Heaven, flipping off Lucifer in the process, before an infuriated Lucifer restores his life and eradicates his cancer. Maybe Heaven isn’t done with John Constantine. At the very least, even if Swinton doesn’t appear in Constantine 2, maybe it won’t be the last we see of Gabriel.

Tilda Swinton can be seen next in A24’s Problemista, opening in limited release March 1, and expanding nationwide March 22.

Related Tags