, a fan site dedicated Chuck star Yvonne Strahovski is claiming to have inside word from “a protected source inside Marvel” who names Strahovski as the actress being cast as Carol Danvers, a.ka. Ms. Marvel, in The Avengers movie.

Before we go any further, I want to say make sure we’re on the same page – that is, filing this unsubstantiated RUMOR in the “not very likely” column.

For those who don’t know, Carol Danvers / Ms. Marvel is an old character in the Marvel Universe. She started as an Air Force officer working with the Kree superhero Captain Marvel – later, as the result of an explosion involving alien technology, Danvers was gifted with powers including super strength, flight and enhanced agility and stamina. During the character’s evolution through the ’80s and ’90s, she was also endowed with the powers of energy absorption and energy projection in the form of “photonic blasts.” After fading into obscurity for a time, Ms. Marvel has recently returned as a mainstream character in her own comic book series, as well as being a major character in the new incarnation of The Avengers.

As for the appearance of Carol Danvers and/or Ms. Marvel in The Avengers movie:

First of all, you should always be wary when a fan site – you know, a site dedicated to obsessing over one celebrity – comes forward claiming to be the exclusive source of a major piece of movie news like this. 9.9 times out of 10, they’re actually the exclusive source of a major piece of wishful thinking. If Carol Danvers was going to be in this film, somebody would have likely pried that information loose already – it’s not like people haven’t been asking about her…

Second, while it’s easy to see why Strahovski would be a likely pick for the role of Ms. Marvel (her salary demands are likely moderate, and she already plays a badass secret agent character on Chuck), pegging her for this role is one of those “too obvious to be true” casting rumors – i.e., she’s someone that Internet fans claim is perfect (in look), in lieu of all the real acting qualifications that casting agents are paid scrutinize.

Third, while the character would be an interesting one to add to The Avengers mix, the powers she exhibits would be fairly costly to realize on the big-screen. With characters like Thor, Iron Man and The Hulk in the film, the CGI visual F/X budget is already being stretched pretty far – so it’s pretty doubtful they Marvel would shell-out big bucks to include a third-tier character like Ms. Marvel.

For all those reasons, I’m highly doubtful that we’ll see this rumor confirmed.

However, I’m not an executive at Marvel Studios so I can’t speak with any kind of absolute authority on this subject. We do know that The Avengers will have several female characters and even though those characters are likely to be S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Nick Fury’s assistant Maria Hill, there is still a bit of room for Carol Danvers to be in the film – either in civilian form or (very, very, slim possibility) in super hero form as Ms. Marvel.

But again – including Ms. Marvel instead of, say, adding The Wasp to The Avengers? I’m not sure fans would be happy with that choice…

There’s also the matter of The Avengers plot, which has been rumored at several points to be about Earth’s Mightiest Heroes taking on the alien hordes of The Kree and The Skrulls. If the plot of The Avengers movie does end up involving either one or both of these alien races, then suddenly the chances of us seeing Carol Danvers become the Kree-empowered Ms. Marvel go way up. Her character could easily be in civilian form for most of the film, and experience her transformation later on toward the ending of the movie as a set up for her inclusion in The Avengers 2. We know that Marvel wants to expand their movie universe, so at this point I’m not ruling any new character(s) out of the mix.

We also know that Avengers director Joss Whedon has a big soft spot for kick-ass female heroes (see: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse), so I wouldn’t count out the possibility that Whedon himself would want a character like Ms. Marvel in Marvel Movie Universe, ready to throw down just as hard as any of the boys. But will it be in this first Avengers film? I doubt it.

So, this leaves us with two questions:

  1. Is there any possibility this rumor could be true  (I’m leaning heavily toward NO).
  2. Regardless of the truth, do you think that Yvonne Strahovski would make a good Ms. Marvel?

The Avengers hits theaters on May 4, 2012.