Lashana Lynch believes Captain Marvel will follow Black Panther's example and properly portray black characters. Marvel Studios is increasing the diversity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe quickly, and they've already seen the success that can be had as a result. Their 2018 year began with Black Panther, the first major superhero movie to be led by a person of color, but also one to feature a predominantly all black cast. Next year, they hope to achieve the same level of success with their first female-led movie, starring Brie Larson as Carol Danvers.
Black Panther transcended the standard superhero movie wave to become a cultural phenomenon. It grossed $1.3 billion at the box office, earned rave reviews, and proved the notion that audiences wouldn't go see a major film led by people of color was false. It also introduced several outstanding African-American characters into the MCU, and Lynch hopes she can help continue that with Captain Marvel.
EW spoke to Lynch about her involvement with Captain Marvel as Carol Danvers' best friend and fellow pilot Maria "Photon" Rambeau. She described her character as both strong and resilient, which are great traits to have for a woman in her position of work and as a single parent. Lynch states that she wants to continue Black Panther's legacy of accurately showcasing characters of color with Captain Marvel.
"I, especially after watching Black Panther, want to keep the black community in a place where they trust that every single African-American character in the Marvel universe is going to be represented positively, is going to be represented accurately, and is going to have a real through-line that the black community or people of color will be proud of. ...I want Maria to be upstanding. I want her to have a voice, I want people to understand her and relate to her, and I want mothers to be proud that there’s a single mother in the MCU."
Chadwick Boseman's Black Panther may be the first black hero to lead a MCU film, but there were a few other heroes of color who came before him. War Machine (Don Cheadle) and Falcon (Anthony Mackie) are the most notable characters, and even though Lynch's Maria Rambeau isn't getting superpowers of her own, it shouldn't be a surprise that she hopes her character comes across as well as those in Black Panther.
It's still unclear how much screen time Lynch will ultimately have in Captain Marvel though. If she it's a smaller role, she'll hopefully make a quick impression. But, if Maria gets caught up in the Kree-Skrull war somehow, then audiences could get a long look at her. And, no matter how much screen time Maria has, she can leave her own legacy in Captain Marvel to pass on these qualities and ambitions to her daughter Monica Rambeau, who Marvel may be setting up for a major role after Avengers 4. If Maria is given the necessary time on screen in Captain Marvel, then hopefully she will resonate with people of color and single mothers all around the world, just as Lynch hopes.
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019