Captain Marvel

Everything we know about the Captain Marvel movie (so far)

Contributed by
Sep 5, 2018

Before Marvel fans find out what happens after Avengers: Infinity War in next April's still-untitled Avengers 4, they'll find out what happened in the MCU back in the '90s.

Captain Marvel is set to explore a brand new part of Marvel history and introduce the most powerful superhero in the entire franchise. Naturally, fans have some questions that won't be totally answered until Captain Marvel's March 8 release date. But, in the meantime, here's everything we know about Captain Marvel.

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WHO IS CAPTAIN MARVEL IN THE COMICS?

Though she has yet to make a proper appearance in the MCU, Captain Marvel is one of Marvel Comics' most iconic and powerful heroes.

The first Captain Marvel was a man, an alien hero named Mar-Vell, who first appeared in a December 1967 comic. Carol Danvers, the current Captain Marvel, first appeared in March of 1968 as an air force officer who gains superhuman powers when an explosion combines Mar-Vell's DNA with hers.

Carol operated as the superhero Ms. Marvel for decades but assumed the mantle of Captain Marvel in 2012. Since then, she's become a flagship character in the comics, one who is due for a big screen debut. (The Ms. Marvel name, meanwhile, has gone to the wildly popular Muslim-American hero Kamala Khan).

captain marvel.jpg

WHAT'S THE FILM'S BACKSTORY?

Captain Marvel was first announced back in October of 2014 as part of Marvel Studio's "Phase Three" films, although initially it was scheduled for a July 2018 release date, a slot that ultimately went to Ant-Man and the Wasp after Marvel pushed their first female-led film back to 2019. At one point, the hero was going to make her debut in Avengers: Age of Ultron, but the studio decided it wasn't ready yet and wanted to give Captain Marvel a proper debut rather than a cameo.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, a duo known for films like Mississippi Grind and Sugar, are directing Captain Marvel. Nicole Perlman and Meg LeFauve, who worked on Guardians of the Galaxy and Inside Out, respectively, were Captain Marvel's co-screenwriters.

Marvel confirmed that Academy Award-winner Brie Larson would play the titular hero back at 2016's San Diego Comic-Con. The first trailer for the film debuted on Good Morning America on September 18, 2018.

WHO'S IN THE CAST?

Larson is playing the titular hero, who she described to Entertainment Weekly as someone who “can’t help but be herself.”

“She can be aggressive, and she can have a temper, and she can be a little invasive and in your face,” the actress said. “She’s also quick to jump to things, which makes her amazing in battle because she’s the first one out there and doesn’t always wait for orders. But the [not] waiting for orders is, to some, a character flaw.”

In addition to Larson as Captain Marvel, the film will also bring back several familiar faces, including a couple fans thought they'd never see in the MCU again.

Samuel L. Jackson will play Nick Fury again, although he'll be de-aged with digital and makeup effects because, again, the movie is set in the '90s. Clark Gregg will play a similarly de-aged Agent Phil Coulson, who hasn't been seen on the big screen since 2012's The Avengers, where he was presumed to have died. (Gregg has, however, played Coulson on the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. TV show for several years).

Sameul L Jackson is young in Captain Marvel

Credit: Marvel Studios

Lee Pace will make a return to the MCU, bringing back the first Guardians of the Galaxy villain Ronan the Accuser, an extremist member of the Kree alien race. In Captain Marvel’s time period, though, Ronan is still a high-ranking, respected member of Kree leadership. His henchman Korath will also appear in the movie, once again played by Djimon Hounsou. Korath and Carol actually fight alongside one another as a member of an elite Kree fighting force.

Gemma Chan co-stars as Minn-Erva, a Kree geneticist who also fights with Carol, while Jude Law plays Carol Danvers’ Kree mentor, but his character name, curiously, hasn't been confirmed yet.

Ben Mendelsohn, who played a villain in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Ready Player One, is Captain Marvel's main villain, confirmed in the EW cover story to be Talos, a member of a shape-shifting, villainous alien race known as the Skrull and the leader of an Earth invasion force. In the comics, Talos is one of the rare Skrull who lacks the ability to shape-shift, but he makes up for it with plenty of cunning and ferocity. However, EW’s pictures show the movie version of Talos can indeed transform, revealing that he uses a human guise to infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D.

Lashana Lynch plays Maria Rambeau, an air force pilot, single mom, and one of Carol’s oldest friends. In the comics, Maria is a minor character, most notable for being the mother of Monica Rambeau, a.k.a. the superhero who has gone by the names of Photon, Pulsar, and Spectrum. Since Captain Marvel takes place in the ‘90s, Maria's little girl would be all grown-up by the time of current MCU films, meaning it’s possible we’ll see the hero in action at some point alongside Captain Marvel herself.

Annette Bening has been cast in an undisclosed role.

Captain Marvel Brie Larson Pilot Training

Credit: Marvel Studios

SO... WHAT'S THE PLOT?

Even though Captain Marvel is introducing a brand-new hero to the MCU, it’s not exactly an origin story, according to Entertainment Weekly. Rather, the film will begin after Carol already has her superpowers. Initially, she’ll be off in space fighting as part of the elite Kree military squadron known as Starforce, fighting alongside her mentor, played by Jude Law. Presumably, this is the comic character who gave Carol her powers, Mar-Vell, though Marvel hasn’t confirmed this explicitly yet.

However, at some point in the movie, Carol will return to Earth, where she’ll have to fend off an invasion from the shape-shifting Skrull, led by Mendelsohn’s Talos. A pre-Iron Man S.H.I.E.L.D. will be involved, somehow.

The first trailer for the film didn’t reveal too many plot specifics, but it showed Carol crash-landing into a Blockbuster Video (it’s the ‘90s!) while wearing her green Kree suit. It appears she’s been off fighting alien wars and is now a “renegade soldier,” but the trailer seems to give the impression that Carol doesn’t totally remember her past on Earth.

“I keep having these memories. I see flashes. I think I had a life here, but I can’t tell if it’s real,” she says. Perhaps the explosion that gave her powers -- which is hinted at in the trailer -- erased her memory, prompting Mar-Vell to take her to space, under his wing?

Presumably, the movie will draw inspiration from the classic early 1970s comic storyline the Kree-Skrull War, which saw an epic conflict between the Kree — the species the fanatical Ronan the Accuser belongs to — and the Skrull. The trailer doesn’t show much Skrull action aside from one shot, but Carol does deck an old lady in the face. Let’s hope she was a shape-shifted Skrull and not an innocent senior.

Captain Marvel Punches an Old Lady

Credit: Marvel

Presumably, the battle — and movie as a whole — will draw inspiration from the classic early 1970s comic storyline the Kree-Skrull War, which saw an epic conflict between the Kree — the species the fanatical Ronan the Accuser belongs to — and the Skrull.

Whatever the plot of the movie ends up being, there's one thing it needs to do: Explain where Captain Marvel has been for the past 30 years, and why nobody in the MCU seems to know who she is or talk about her, Nick Fury's last-minute page to her excluded.

Captain Marvel is confirmed to appear in Avengers 4, so she'll be making a reappearance. Perhaps she's spent the past three decades off fighting an intergalactic war in space, not aging because of her superpowers?

ANY LEAKS?

Despite premiering before Avengers 4, we know far less about Captain Marvel, and there are hardly any leaked images or plot details, let alone official ones.

The first official look at Larson in costume came on the cover of Entertainment Weekly. Her classic blue, red, and yellow suit looks comics-accurate, and her hands are glowing with energy. It’s pretty similar to mock-ups that popular fan-artist BossLogic made in the months before there was any official look at the costume.

Prior to the EW cover, paparazzi photos taken on the set show Larson wearing the Captain Marvel suit, except it's green rather than being the traditional red, yellow, and blue. This is likely a scene from earlier in the movie, as Mar-Vell initially wore a green suit. Early images of an officially-licensed notebook bearing an illustration of Larson as Captain Marvel indicated that she'll wear the classic colors by the movie's end, as do pieces of concept art Marvel released back in 2017. The trailer revealed that she'll also wear her helmet -- at least while wearing the green suit. 

Captain Marvel's helmet in first trailer

Credit: Marvel Studios

WHAT'S NEXT?

Even though Captain Marvel's film debut/origin story is largely shrouded in mystery, we have some idea about what will happen afterward when the character makes her second appearance in Avengers 4.

Concept art for Avengers 4 shows Captain Marvel, dressed in her red, yellow, and blue suit, alongside the heroes (plus Hawkeye) who survived Infinity War. She apparently comes back from wherever she was in time to help defeat Thanos and, presumably, undo the damage he did with The Snap.

WILL CAPTAIN MARVEL HAVE A POST-CREDITS SCENE?

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