Ever since Captain Marvel was officially announced for Phase Three by Marvel Studios, fans have been creating lists of directors they’d like to see direct the film, as well as lists of stars they’d like to see take up the role of Carol Danvers. One name that has been attached to direct Captain Marvel has been Angelina Jolie – who has turned her focus from acting to directing over the past few years. Of course, her involvement in the project is nothing more than a rumor, albeit a surprisingly persistent one. As for the actresses, there’s been one actress seemingly rumored for the project – Emily Blunt, a fan favorite for the role. Add in the fact that the actress was originally cast as Black Widow prior to having to pull out due to other commitments, and she was offered the role of Peggy Carter, which she ultimately turned down, it’s hard not to believe that Marvel has had their eye on her for some time making Captain Marvel seem like a safe bet for the actress.
But the thing about Marvel is that they typically don’t go for the obvious choices. (Of course, there have been some exceptions – such as Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange.) Let’s look at the upcoming Spider-Man reboot, for example. There were directors with plenty of credits to their names up for the gig, directors with a heck of a lot more recognition than Jon Watts, and yet Marvel chose Watts. He has two features to his name – a horror movie, Clown, and the well-received Cop Car which was released earlier this year. Then there was the casting of Tom Holland. Unlike the other teens up for the gig – namely Asa Butterfield – Holland is still relatively new to Hollywood, and yet, he managed to land one of the most coveted roles in Hollywood.
We’ve seen Marvel make surprising choices like this in the past too. Take Guardians of the Galaxy, for example. Choosing both James Gunn and Chris Pratt, as the director and star, respectively, was definitely an interesting move. While Gunn had proven himself talented with films like Slither and Super, they hadn’t exactly been hits at the box office. And with Pratt, he didn’t fit the image most people had for Star-Lord, and he had yet to serve as the lead on a big budget movie – how would he go on to lead Guardians? Of course, after the massive success of Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s hard to imagine these were once concerns for fans. So, why shouldn’t we start to think outside of the box when it comes to Captain Marvel?
Emily Blunt would be a perfect choice for Carol, sure. I for one have been more than supportive of this idea since Edge of Tomorrow, but Blunt is building a name for herself. She’s becoming the go-to actress for most fan-casts as far as action films are concerned. (Something which Blunt has suggested by stating she feels more actresses should be considered for these roles.) It’s easy to fan-cast actresses like Blunt, Charlize Theron, and Katee Sackhoff in roles like Captain Marvel, but they shouldn’t be the only actresses considered for the role.
Recently, Film School Rejects wrote an article suggesting director Reed Morano and actress Olivia Wilde as choices that Marvel should be considering for the upcoming Captain Marvel film. It was an article sparked by one of our own contributors asking Reed if she’d be interested in directing the film – having suggested Wilde as Carol. Reed replied rather enthusiastically, as did Wilde.
— Reed Morano, A.S.C. (@reedmorano) October 21, 2015
@reedmorano Oh hell yea. Let's DO this.
— olivia wilde (@oliviawilde) October 21, 2015
Also worth noting? A geek-favorite actor fully supported this duo getting the gig.
I'd watch that! https://t.co/f9DiKdDVza
— Nathan Fillion (@NathanFillion) October 21, 2015
Now, for many fans, Morano may not be a familiar name. Prior to directing Meadowland, which actually stars Wilde, Morano worked as a cinematographer. She has a pretty impressive resume, and Meadowland is an absolutely stunning debut. (Not playing near a theater near you? You can currently rent it through streaming services like Vudu!) Suggesting her as a director for Captain Marvel may seem like a strange idea at first, but isn’t Morano typically the type of director Marvel goes after? She’s an impressive new talent that isn’t that well-known. And her debut film, Meadowland, proves that she’s capable of eliciting amazing performances from her actors.
Morano is exactly the type of name that should be included on the lists of potential directors for films like Captain Marvel as opposed to names like Angelina Jolie and Kathryn Bigelow, names that have either been rumored for the gig (Jolie) or constantly suggested by fans (Bigelow). A director like Morano could prove to be the next Gunn – delivering one of the best installments into the Marvel Cinematic Universe – if given the chance. (Interesting note: Morano’s next film, Lioness is a war drama starring Ellen Page – a pretty great project to finish up before going into Captain Marvel, no?)
Which brings us to Wilde. Now, Wilde is arguably a much bigger name. She’s starred in big budget features – most notably Disney’s Tron: Legacy back in 2010 – while still working steadily on indie projects. Unlike Blunt, Wilde’s name is one that’s rarely mentioned in contention for a role like Captain Marvel, which is a bit odd to me. Over the course of her career, Wilde has proven herself capable of being able to perform in various genres – whether it be a drama (House M.D., Meadowland), science fiction (Tron: Legacy), or horror (The Lazarus Effect). Wilde, much like was the case with Pratt in Guardians of the Galaxy or Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch, would prove to be an out of the box pick for Carol Danvers. She’s the type of casting we hope for from Marvel. Someone that isn’t an obvious choice, but someone that would be able to do Carol justice. Her portrayal as a grieving mother in Meadownland shows how ready she is for a role of this size – she manages to give a powerful performance even in the scenes without any dialogue. If given the right material – which shouldn’t be a problem with Nicole Perlman & Meg LeFauve penning the film – she could knock it out of the park.
Given how important Captain Marvel is, as it will be the first female led Marvel film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s important that Marvel Studios is willing to find the right actress and director for the project – as opposed to just choosing a safe bet for both. And as both Film School Rejects and our own contributor, MC Nedelsky, have suggested, both Morano and Wilde are choices that Marvel Studios should be seriously considering.
Captain Marvel is set to hit movie theaters in 2019.
Be sure to check back as we’ll be posting an exclusive interview with director Reed Morano very soon!