SDCC: Brie Larson Confirmed as Captain Marvel

More from San Diego Comic Con:  In the Marvel Panel in Hall H they broke a huge announcement at the conclusion of their presentation that Brie Larson will be playing the role of Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel.  Why did they choose her and what will this mean for the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward?  Continue reading for more details, as well as the first glimpse of the official logo for the film.

For starters here’s the new logo for Marvel’s Captain Marvel:

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The biggest reveal of the night, and the last big announcement from the huge Marvel presentation in Hall H on Saturday, was the confirmation that Brie Larson (Room) will be playing Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel.  This is significant news because despite characters like Black Widow and Scarlet Witch featuring heavily in the Avengers films, Captain Marvel will be the female hero to appear in a stand alone film.  She is a major player in Marvel comics and due to this fact, the public notoriety that follows a role in the MCU (and ability to get independent film role funded due to increase in popularity) and being positioned as a role model for young girls since she will be the first Marvel female superhero and only the second female superhero following Wonder Woman in this current renaissance of superhero movies.

Here’s a summary of Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel is the comics, courtesy of Screen Rant highlighting why it is a role worth having:

“And Captain Marvel a.k.a. Carol Danvers is role worth snagging seeing as she’s a character who is practically guaranteed to stick around for a while. Expected to make her debut in an earlier MCU film, Carol will later headline her own film in 2019. Beyond that we don’t know anything official, but recent years have seen Carol’s role in Marvel’s comic universe expanded significantly. Always a major player in the Avengers comics, Carol’s “promotion” to Captain (passing the “Ms.” moniker on to teenager, Kamala Khan) was paired with a new costume, new ongoing series, and new role as a leader among Marvel’s heroes. Currently in the comics, Captain Marvel heads up Alpha Flight, has worked alongside the Guardians of the Galaxy, and in Civil War II, she leads the faction that is opposing Tony Stark/Iron Man.”

Admittedly, with Larson only being 26 she may come across as bit young for Carol – a character who would already have a military career by the time she gains her Kree-based powers, not to mention an elaborate and complicated history with other Marvel characters. But Larson has surely proved herself capable of depicting complicated characters who come with some baggage. Plus, there’s no telling just how “formed” Captain Marvel will be when we first meet her, they could very well introduce her in the earliest stages of her origin, allowing Larson to develop the character across several movies.

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So why did they decide to go with Brie Larson?  As I stated above, this was a coveted role and there were other notable names that were rumored to be in the conversation such as Emily Blunt and Rebecca Ferguson so why did Marvel decide to cast a younger woman who is mainly known for her work in smaller independent films?  Here’s what Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige had to say about her casting in an interview with CinemaBlend (via Screen Rant):

“Listen, we set the bar very high with the first casting decision we ever made with Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark. Since then, every single choice we’ve made, we have asked, ‘Could it meet that bar?’ Because that is what people expect of us, and that is what … it’s a very high bar. Carol Danvers needs to be as rich and textured and real as the best of our characters. Maybe even more so. And we got very lucky that Brie — who has all of those attributes, and an Academy Award now — was still very interested in signing up and joining us to bring this character to life.”

I’ll admit that Brie Larson was not the first person that jumped to mind when dream casting the role of Carol Danvers.  I really wanted to see Emily Blunt in the part following her turn in Edge of Tomorrow.  That said, Brie Larson is an incredible talent as seen in movies like Short Term 12 and Room (which she won an Oscar for) so she certainly has the acting chops to line up next to people like Robert Downey, Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, etc.  She also has experience in comedies like Trainwreck and 21 Jump Street, which is a must in Marvel movie that tend to lean heavily on comedy to remain family friendly.  Lastly, she even has experience with comic book movies having appeared in Scott Pilgrim vs the World (with Chris Evans no less).  Marvel has been extra careful with their casting decisions through the years and has knocked it out of the park each time.  This decision should be no different and I look forward to her bubbly personality appearing in front of the camera for interviews more frequently now that she’s apart of the Marvel cinematic juggernaut.

So who is going to be directing Captain Marvel?  In an interview with Coming Soon, Feige stated that Marvel is down to a shortlist of 10 directors although none of the individuals on the list have been named.  There have been numerous names rumored to be up for the role, but nothing has been confirmed by Marvel as of yet.  Here’s a rundown of the rumors according to Screen Rant.

“So, who should direct Captain Marvel? Indie filmmaker Emily Carmichael has been rumored for the film, as have accomplished directors Niki Caro (Whale Rider) and Jennifer Kent (The Babadook), according to a/Film report last month. Michelle MacLaren, who was director of DC’s Wonder Woman movie before she was removed, has directed some astonishing action on Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones, and absolutely deserves another chance. There are also a pair of directors who have worked with Larson on her best independent films – Destin Daniel Cretton (Short Term 12) and Lenny Abrahamson (Room).

Or on the other hand, Marvel could go with an old hand (Joss Whedon? The Russo Brothers?), or a big name who hasn’t ever worked with Marvel before. Who Marvel chooses to direct Captain Marvel remains to be seen, but it should be announced soon.”

My money would be that Whedon and the Russos will not be in the running for directing Captain Marvel.  The Russos have their hands full directing the two-part Infinity Wars films, which promise to be absolutely massive undertakings and I envision them taking a breather or having a smaller palette cleaning movie before they’d want to jump right back into another big blockbuster.  Whedon has stated that he was done with Marvel, but has recently expressed interest in directing a stand alone Black Widow movie.  A Black Widow movie has been discussed by Feige recently, but as of now there’s nothing on the docket.  He has been known to be drawn to strong female roles in the past, but I image after the experience with Age of Ultron he’d only get back in bed with Marvel under his own terms on a project that he’s passionate about.  The more likely scenario is Marvel will follow in the footsteps of DC/Warner Bros. and hire a female director.

There’s no word yet on whether he stand alone movie would be Danvers’ first appearance on the big screen.  Feige was cryptic when answering the question stating that she won’t appear in any other movies “unless she does.”  I suspect she will be making an appearance in at least one of the Infinity Wars movies beforehand.  They could use someone with her abilities to help level the playing field against Thanos and his cohorts.

So what do you think about the decision to cast Brie Larson as Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel?  Do you think she’s the best choice for the role or did you have someone else in mind?  Who would be your pick to direct Captain Marvel?  Share your opinions in the discussion board below.  Captain Marvel arrives in theaters March 8, 2019.

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