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CAPTAIN MARVEL Adds Gemma Chan As Minn-Erva

CAPTAIN MARVEL Adds Gemma Chan As Minn-Erva

Even though it doesn’t hit theaters until 2019, the Captain Marvel movie is already gathering serious hype across the internet. Fans are super excited to finally see a woman at the center of a Marvel superhero franchise—and who can blame them? It’s about time the MCU properly honored how amazing we ladies are at kicking supervillain butt. To help you keep track of the facts and get you even more stoked for the movie, here’s everything we know so far about Captain Marvel.

UPDATE, 2/26/2018 – Another new cast member! Deadline has reported Gemma Chan will be playing Minn-Erva, a Kree geneticist/spy. Given the character’s comic book history, which has pitted her against both the first Captain Marvel and the current Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), could Chan be the next big Marvel villain? If so, this would be the studio’s first casting of a woman of color as a lead antagonist.

It’s worth noting, however, Chan has become something of a go-to for evil yet sexy inhuman roles, which manages to combine multiple stereotypes of Asian women in one casting call: Dragon Lady meets Robo-Geisha. Her recent roles include Anita, a sentient humanoid robot with mysterious motives in AMC’s Humans, and the Cybertronian sorceress Quintessa, a.k.a. “The Great Deceiver,” who brainwashes Optimus Prime in Transformers: The Last Knight (a movie, in fairness, where literally everything is a Transformer).

Playing an alien spy/science person doesn’t exactly buck those stereotypes, but there’s still a chance Minn-Erva could give Chan the opportunity to play an intriguing, well-rounded character while enjoying all the fun parts of being a baddie. Fingers crossed.

UPDATE, 1/4/2018 – According to Deadline, Dewanda Wise will be co-starring opposite Brie Larson in an as yet unrevealed role. This will be the first major movie role for Wise, who stars in Spike Lee’s Netflix series She’s Gotta Have It.

Fans are speculating that Wise may be portraying Monica Rambeau, the totally awesome superhero who held the title of Captain Marvel before Carol Danvers:

If the speculation is correct, this would not only situate a black woman close to the heart of the Captain Marvel movie but would give a much beloved superhero her blockbuster debut. During her tenure as Captain Marvel, Monica Rambeau led the Avengers to victory when they had to fight the X-Men because it was Comics Event O’Clock again. Her badassery and straight-talking confidence won readers’ hearts, as did her sweet Afro and quite frankly staggering array of powers, which ranged from good old superspeed to being able to take the form of any type of electromagnetic energy to “hyper-cosmic awareness.”


The movie focuses on (duh) Captain Marvel, a.k.a. Carol Danvers, who will be played by Brie Larson. She’s a former pilot whose DNA is altered by an encounter with an alien warrior, thus granting her a whole lot of superpowers such as flight, super strength, and channeling energy into weaponized blasts. Not unusual for a Marvel film…except this one is going retro. At this year’s San Diego Comic-Con it was revealed that Carol’s story takes place in the 1990s. No word yet on whether that means Captain Marvel will be sporting the “Rachel” haircut or a sweet pair of JNCOs, but we can hope.

On the opposing team are the Skrulls, shape-shifting aliens with the ability to assume the forms of basically whoever they want, which is what makes them so difficult to fight. The Skrulls were first introduced to Marvel Comics in the Kree-Skrull War story arc, where their interplanetary conflict with the Kree aliens spilled over to Earth and messed things up extraterrestrial-style.

To handle a threat like that, you need Captain Marvel, who according to Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige is the MCU’s most powerful superhero. Back in October 2016, Feige told Vulture:

“With Captain Marvel, she is as powerful a character as we’ve ever put in a movie. Her powers are off the charts, and when she’s introduced, she will be by far the strongest character we’ve ever had. It’s important, then, to counterbalance that with someone who feels real. She needs to have a humanity to tap into, and Brie can do that.”

We do know Nick Fury will be involved somehow; in its SDCC announcement, Marvel also confirmed rumors that the director of S.H.I.E.L.D. is slated to appear in Captain Marvel. However, he’ll be a couple of decades younger and will have two eyes, meaning no eyepatch. Samuel L. Jackson is on board to reprise his role, although one wonders how the studio is going to handle the whole “20-plus years younger” situation.


Costuming can be a huge issue for female superheroes. For too long they’ve been stuffed into needlessly revealing uniforms dedicated to showing the maximum amount of skin, because I guess women can’t fight bad guys without 10 miles of visible cleavage and an atomic wedgie. Thankfully, the first glimpses we’ve seen of Captain Marvel’s costume are the complete opposite. The concept art is sleek, practical, and cool as hell.

Here’s a clearer picture from concept artist Andy Park:

Comics fans may recognize this ensemble from the character’s 2012 Marvel Now! relaunch, designed by artist Jamie McKelvie. As McKelvie told Newsarama that same year, the idea was to “create something that came out of her character and background in the military.”


Deadline recently reported that Geneva Robertson-Dworet has been selected to script Captain Marvel. She takes over from Meg Lefauve, writer for the movie Inside Out, and Nicole Perlman, co-writer of the Guardians of the Galaxy script. Robertson-Dworet is no stranger to action-oriented stories about kickass women—she’s also the main scriptwriter for the upcoming Tomb Raider movie starring Alicia Vikander and for the big screen adaptation of Gotham City Sirens, which is planned as a Suicide Squad movie spinoff featuring Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn.

For any readers concerned about delays, don’t worry; the Captain Marvel script handover isn’t a full rewrite. Perlman confirmed on Twitter that the movie’s core ideas, which were conceptualized before Robertson-Dworet came on board, would more or less remain intact.


In April 2017, a Variety report named Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck as the directors for Captain Marvel, beating out several impressive solo female candidates such as Niki Caro (Whale Rider), Lorene Scafaria (Seeking a Friend For the End of the World), and Lesli Linka Glatter (various episodes of HomelandThe Leftovers, Mad Men, The Walking Dead, and nearly every other prestige TV show you can think of). Unlike new scriptwriter Robertson-Dworet, Boden and Fleck are fairly new to the world of superheroics. Their previous work mostly covers darker character-driven movies, including Half Nelson and Mississippi Grind, as well as episodes of Showtime’s Billions and The Affair. As our own Alicia Lutes points out, though, the left-field approach has been working pretty well for Marvel Studios these days. Taika Waititi was perhaps most famous for directing the hilarious vampire mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows before he signed on to direct Thor: Ragnarok, for example. Boden and Fleck are the latest example of Marvel’s increased willingness to take risks with their directors.


In addition to Larson and Jackson, other confirmed names on the movie’s cast list include Jude Law as male lead Dr. Walter Lawson/Mar-Vell and Ben Mendelsohn (a.k.a. the bad guy from Rogue One) as a yet unnamed villain. According to Variety, Law’s character “becomes a mentor of sorts to Danvers [Captain Marvel] as she tries to figure out her new powers.” While there’s always the chance Captain Marvel’s relationship with Mar-Vell might become a romantic one, the wording here suggests they might be keeping it platonic, which would be a welcome move away from convention.

We’ll continue to update this post as more details emerge, so keep checking in for Captain Marvel news! The film is scheduled to hit theaters in March of 2019.

Images: Marvel

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