Marvel is keeping the fabulous lady train rolling by bringing the mother of dragons herself, Emilia Clarke, into the MCU. She is joining the upcoming Disney+ series Secret Invasion on the heels of Olivia Colman. Naturally, no one has any idea who she’s playing. I gotta be honest, I was so-so on Secret Invasion when it was first announced, but I am becoming VERY curious about it based on casting alone. Also, Clarke joins the growing list of actors who have been in both Star Wars AND the MCU, a list that includes Secret Invasion stars Samuel L. Jackson and Ben Mendelsohn, and Clarke’s Solo co-star, Paul Bettany. If Hollywood is a high school cafeteria, is being in Star Wars and Marvel like being the jock who also stars in the musical? Or is it more like being the over-achiever who has to be involved in every extracurricular?
Last year, after the big Marvel news dump during Disney’s investor call in December, I said that “it feels like we’re barreling toward a very near future where every single actor is a Marvel character”. With all these Disney+ shows introducing what feels like a dozen important characters each, that feels more inevitable than ever. Andy Warhol once said that “in the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” Thanks to social media, we now live in that future. The next iteration of that is: in the future, everyone will be a Marvel character. Like at what point do we just start getting notices in the mail that it’s our turn to go be in a Marvel thing, like jury duty? But seriously, ten years ago it was still kind of a big deal for actors like Mendelsohn and Colman—generally “above” this kind of crassly corporate genre work—but now it’s totally run of the mill to see the most high-falutin’ names listed in a Marvel casting announcement. At this point, who would actually surprise you if they joined a Marvel movie? Who is your “My god, Marvel got them?” casting announcement? Keanu is up there, they’ve been after him forever and it never quite works out. But for me it’s got to be Leonardo DiCaprio. (Lainey: not that anybody asked me but for me it’s Denzel Washington.)