Ben Mendelsohn believes Skrulls are just misunderstood aliens in Captain Marvel. Marvel Studios' first film in 2019 is a major one for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Brie Larson will be the first female to lead an MCU film as Carol Danvers, aka Captain Marvel. It'll also be the first MCU film set in the 1990s, a currently unexplored era in the franchise. However, the movie is also the first to feature Skrulls in the MCU as well, and directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck have brought their Mississippi Grind star Ben Mendelsohn onboard to lead the shapeshifting race.
The Skrulls will be a major part of Captain Marvel, as the film heavily revolves around the Kree-Skrull war. As Talos, Mendelsohn will be at the forefront of the dispute, but also helping lead a hopeful invasion of Earth. The war, and the Skrull's larger plans for world domination will put them on the opposite side of Captain Marvel, but Mendelsohn asserts that the invading alien race is just misunderstood.
EW spoke to Mendelsohn as part of their Captain Marvel cover story, which included the first look at Larson suited up, and he quickly came to the defense of the "bad guys" in the movie. From his perspective, it's the Kree that are causing all the problems, and the Skrulls' intentions are just not being interpreted properly.
We gotta deal with the Kree. The Kree are punks. And the Skrulls, I mean, we’re just misunderstood. At the end of the day, the Skrull is really misunderstood.
Mendelsohn is clearly playing into his role for the entirety of the interview, so it isn't likely that audiences will walk out of Captain Marvel agreeing that the Skrulls' plans and motives were just misunderstood. He lets Talos show through a bit too much, as he's talking about how great the Skrulls are, but asserting how it's actually the Kree who are the bad guys. It likely won't be so black and white/good and evil in the movie though. The Skrulls do want to take over a planet (a traditional goal for villains), but the Kree have plenty of less-than-upstanding members as well. Fans already know Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace) and Korath the Pursuer (Djimon Hounsou) will turn bad, and we're already theorizing Jude Law could do the same.
Whether the Skrulls are simply misunderstood or not, it's fun to see Mendelsohn completely buy in to that mindset. Captain Marvel likely won't be the last time the Skrulls appear, as Marvel may be laying the foundation for the Secret Invasion storyline to take shape in Phase 4 and beyond. If that arc is explored, then the Skrulls, and maybe even Mendelsohn, could return in future movies. Mendelsohn's hoping to join the pantheon of memorable Marvel villains too, so whether he sees himself and the Skrulls as bad guys or not, fans can only hope they deliver as such in Captain Marvel.