We’ve seen a handful of the new castings for the Disney+ shows such as Canadian actresses Iman Vellani for Kamala Khan aka Ms. Marvel and Tatiana Maslany for Jennifer Walters aka She-Hulk. However, both of those picks felt more in the realm of television castings from Marvel Studios and could be actors they can transform into international stars such as they did with Thor’s Chris Hemsworth and are expected to do with Shang-Chi’s Simu Liu.
If Marvel Studios ultimately hires Oscar Issac for Marc Spector (fingers-crossed he signs on officially) they would be landing one of the more high profile leading actors since the likes of Brie Larson for Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel and the late Chadwick Boseman who played T’Challa aka Black Panther, both known mostly for their film work at the time of being cast in their respective roles. The last big high-profile casting announcement was when Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali was announced for the role of Eric Brooks aka Blade back in July 2019 at San Diego Comic-Con, who happened to have been dabbling in television at the time with Netflix’s Luke Cage and HBO’s True Detective.
We already know that Kevin Feige has confirmed that the Disney+ characters would eventually move into feature films but the Moon Knight casting, to me, suggests Marc Spector is a hot commodity for Marvel Studios and they needed a high-profile actor to play him.
It’s worth noting that Oscar Isaac has been making films regularly for the last 18 years (started in 1996) but has previously only agreed to make three television projects such as the HBO miniseries Show Me A Hero, voice work on the Disney animated series Star Wars: Resistance, and is about to make another HBO limited series titled Scenes From A Marriage co-starring Jessica Chastain. That is only two live-action TV projects that were made for HBO. Agreeing to make a streaming series on Disney+ would be a big deal given his limited television work and the time commitment attached it alongside a Marvel contract.
Oscar is known as an actor internationally thanks to playing Poe Dameron in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and recently taking the role of Duke Leto Atreides in Denis Villeneuve’s first Dune installment, all massive films giving him global exposure that a lot of other Marvel leads didn’t have before landing their franchise gigs.
It’s expected that will Dune release globally before Moon Knight begins to air on Disney+ with their new release date of October 1st, 2021.
Landing someone as popular and busy as Isaac would suggest to me that Moon Knight is likely heading to the feature films very very soon. His high-profile screams film casting rather than Marvel looking to develop new talent in a streaming series before. I wouldn’t be shocked if he showed up in other New York City projects or at the very least in Mahershala Ali’s upcoming Blade reboot, as both anti-heroes are wading in the realm of Marvel’s supernatural and horror corner.
It remains to be seen if he shows up in other movies before getting his own but this totally feels like Oscar was picked because he’s a well-known film actor that can help elevate a lesser-known hero like Moon Knight into the mainstream.
Marvel hired Oscar even before a director/directors have been chosen which could be considered another sign that he’s wanted for things beyond the series sooner rather than later. I’m quite curious if Marvel will end up pursing experienced film directors for the Moon Knight series instead of folks primarily known for television/streaming series. That could be another sign of how committed Marvel would be boosting the profile of this character before moving into the films.
I’ll keep my hopes up that Marvel can convince people like Alex Garland to direct episodes given his experience working with Oscar Isaac on Annihilation and Ex Machina. Garland made the comic book film Dredd in 2012 and recently tackled television with DEVS.
With that all said, I’m excited to see how this project comes together.