What you need to know about ‘Captain Marvel,’ Marvel’s first female-led superhero movie

Screengrab via Marvel

Carol Danvers is the hero Marvel fans have been waiting for.

DC may be beating Marvel out of the gate with its first female-led superhero flick Wonder Woman hitting theaters this June, but Marvel plans to role out its own female title character… eventually. 

The Captain Marvel movie has been a long time coming for Marvel fans, who still have awhile to wait for the heroine. Ever since the Marvel Cinematic Universe started with Iron Man back in 2008, female superheroes have been seriously underrepresented. Many fans lobbied Marvel for a Black Widow movie, but nothing has come of those ovations. Instead, Marvel is looking toward its next wave of heroes, which includes Captain Marvel.

The film may still be two years away, but here’s everything we know so far about the Captain Marvel movie, Marvel’s first solo female superhero film.

Captain Marvel cast

Brie Larson is the only confirmed cast member so far. Larson’s in a unique and occasionally awkward position as Captain Marvel. Cast years before her film was franchise was due to begin, she’s regularly asked about a film that doesn’t actually exist yet.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly in October 2017, she compared the experience to her breakout role as a kidnap survivor in Room. “I can’t help but trip out about how similar my life is to Room,” she said. “It’s me wanting to stay in my own little bubble and remain anonymous and invisible and at the same time needing to step up to this hand that I’ve been given.”

Larson spent months mulling the decision to become Marvel’s first female headliner, but decided to accept the role because “it was a chance to tell a story on the largest scale possible.”

captain marvel movie brie larson Screengrab via BrieLarson/Twitter

With filming set to commence February 2018, expect more casting announcements to trickle in throughout the year.

Captain Marvel plot

It’s still too early to know what kind of story Captain Marvel will tackle. In the comics, Captain Marvel is Carol Danvers, a top-tier Air Force pilot who develops superpowers. (Fans will remember that Danvers originally appeared in comics as Ms. Marvel before the ever-popular Kamala Khan took over the role.)

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While some Marvel heroes spend most of their time on Earth, Captain Marvel’s adventures have taken her to far-off worlds. She’s exceptionally powerful, with superhuman strength, flying capabilities (including in space), and deadly combat skills. She’s also a talented diplomat.

Captain Marvel Photo via Marvel

The movie will involve the Kree-Skrull war and take place in the 1990s. That raises some questions about where Captain Marvel was during the “later” Marvel movies—but producer Kevin Feige has already hinted at the answer.

“The key is… ‘out there,'” he told io9, indicating that Carol Danvers may be in space during the 2010s era of the Avengers. Does that mean she’ll be middle-aged by the time she meets the other Marvel characters for the first time? We’re guessing no. Expect some kind of timewarp shenanigans, explaining why Carol Danvers is still young from the 1990s to the present day.

Captain Marvel news

Carol Danvers gets her superpowers when a device created by the alien Kree malfunctions and explodes. You may remember the Kree from Guardians of the Galaxy. As a result of the accident, Danvers’ human genes become fused with Kree biology, and as a consequence, she gains superpowers. It’s likely the film version of origin story will maintain the Guardians connection given the popularity of the first two movies. It also helps that the Captain Marvel movie is being co-written by Guardians scribe Nicole Perlman (who’s penning the script with Meg LeFauve of Pixar’s Inside Out).  

Danvers is a unique superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe because similar to Tony Stark, she starts off as a relatively normal person before being imbued with superpowers. The biggest difference between Danvers and Stark is that Danvers gains powers, while Stark uses the Iron Man suit for his abilities.

It’s perhaps premature to speculate what kind of role Danvers will have in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, beyond the surface-level connection to Guardians of the Galaxy. Larson has been chatting with Marvel quite a bit, saying, “[Marvel’s] been very open to hearing my thoughts and my take on it, which has been great. I think that’s why they cast me: I have a lot of similarities to this character… and they want me to bring that into the movie.”

At 27, Larson is already an Academy Award winner for Best Actress for her role in the 2015 drama Room.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, known for directing Ryan Gosling to stardom on Half-Nelson, were announced as the directors for the film. They are known for making smaller movies with a more intimate, human touch. That coupled with Larson’s genuine, heartfelt sensibilities will likely bring a unique combination of raw, human intimacy to the Captain Marvel movie.

Captain Marvel release date Screengrab via Marvel

Captain Marvel announced a change of screenwriters on Aug. 15, reportedly because Meg LeFauve and Nicole Perlman are busy with other projects. Geneva Robertson-Dworet, who wrote the new Tomb Raider reboot, will take over as the film’s lead writer.

Captain Marvel movie trailer

No trailer has been released so far, but with San Diego Comic-Con coming this summer, it’s possible we could get some early test photos.

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Captain Marvel movie release date

Captain Marvel was originally slated for July 6, 2018, until it was pushed back to March 8, 2019. It marks the first time Marvel has released a superhero movie in March, fitting for Marvel’s “biggest female hero.” 

Editor’s note: This article is regularly updated for relevance.

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