Oscar winner Cate Blanchett played Hela in 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok, and just as fans thought the character’s arc was over, the actor will reprise the role in What If… season 2. The What If… anthology might not be canon, but it’s still great to have Blanchett back in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in some form.
The franchise is actually filled with world-class Oscar-winning actors, but they’re often underutilized. For every Anthony Hopkins, there’s a Jennifer Connelly. Between Forest Whitaker killed too soon and F. Murray Abraham’s brief voiceover stint, Marvel Studios has wasted a lot of talent over the years.
Sam Rockwell played Iron Man 2 weaponsmith Justin Hammer, who was one of the MCU’s most interesting early villains. And since Rockwell has a unique brand, which kind of throws a jig into each of his films, it didn’t look better in the 2010 film. Hammer showed off some killer dance moves on stage before showing off his influenced machines. by Stark technology.
With a villain this entertaining and played by an actor of Rockwell’s caliber, he’s been on the sidelines for far too long. Rockwell has commented that he would like to return to the MCU, and given that Armor Wars is now becoming a movie, as it was originally planned to be a Disney+ series, the movie marks the perfect opportunity for the Oscar winner. to come back.
Tommy Lee Jones
While Oscar winner Tommy Lee Jones distinguishes between being a versatile actor and being typecast as military men and men in positions of authority, there was no better MCU role for him than Chester Phillips. Phillips was the stoic Colonel who oversaw the “super-soldier” experiment Steve Rogers participated in, and he was something of a mentor to the future Captain America.
It certainly would have been difficult to bring Phillips back, as he was shot at the end of Captain America: The First Avenger, but no one is ever left dead in the MCU. And he might even have been in a few flashbacks in later movies. There’s always a way to bring back an actor as great as Jones.
Best Supporting Actress winner Jennifer Connelly voiced Karen, aka Suit Lady, in Spider-Man: Homecoming, so fans didn’t even get to see her properly on screen. Although it might have risked repeating major story arcs, Karen’s voice could have been used for another superhero character, just as JARVIS’ voice later became the voice of Vision (Paul Bettany) .
However, given that she and Bettany are married in real life, that might have been a bit too meta for the universe. But regardless, it’s still a shame fans couldn’t see or even hear more of Connelly, as she only voiced Karen for one Spider-Man movie.
Best Actor winner Forest Whitaker played Zuri in the 2018 superhero epic Black Panther, and as he does with every role, Whitaker threw absolutely everything he had into it. Unfortunately, Killmonger killed Zuri before battling and defeating King T’Challa, but it was necessary to show what a force the villain was.
However, while the character was essentially the Obi-Wan of the Black Panther series, Zuri was killed way too early in the franchise, and it’s not like he could return as a Force Ghost. The actor was criminally underused in the film, especially since he can project himself better and be far more imposing than any other cast member.
Hela’s role in Thor: Ragnarok was awesome, she played an important role in Thor’s future, and she single-handedly caused the destruction of Asgard. And it was all enhanced by the performance of Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett. While villains constantly coming back from the dead can be a problem in-universe, there’s no way Blanchett will be relegated to just playing villain of the week.
It’s been confirmed that Blanchett will reprise the role for What If… season 2, but it’s nothing more than just voiceover work in a 20-minute episode. Hopefully Hela can return to a live-action project somewhere down the line, as her brother tends to come back to life again and again. Hela even deserves its own movie, and there’s certainly enough source material to dig into for a potential Hela movie.
Benicio Del Toro
Benicio del Toro plays The Collector in the MCU, and he was featured in Guardians of the Galaxy where fans got to see the character’s museum filled with intergalactic artifacts. He was apparently set up to have a much bigger role, but the next time the public saw him, he suffered the wrath of Thanos, who also set the museum on fire.
However, an off-screen death usually means the character isn’t actually dead, and del Toro himself has even revealed that The Collector is still alive too, so he’s hoping he shows up at some point in the future. As The Collector is one of the Elders of the Universe, along with the Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum), and fans suspect Bill Murray to be one in Quantumania, an Elders of the Universe movie starring all three actors. famous is just waiting to happen.
Although famed actor Ben Kingsley won Best Actor for Gandhi in 1982, if the Academy were more open to nominating comedic roles, the actor would definitely have been nominated to play Trevor Slattery in Iron Man 3. So that many fans might have criticized Iron Man 3’s Bait and Switch, while Slattery was created as the Mandarin only to be revealed that he really is a beer-guzzling struggling actor he was the part the most memorable of the film.
Kingsley reprized the role of Trevor in last year’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, but the character had become totally flandered, as his stupidity had consumed his entire personality. Slattery may have made some bad choices in the 2010 film, but he still had a sense of wit about him. Hopefully Marvel Studios will bring Kingsley back once more and give the famous actor some good material.
F. Murray Abraham
It’s no surprise that Oscar winner F. Murray Abraham was cast in a voice-only role, as he’s always had such a commanding, almost statesman-like delivery. The actor played Khonshu in the recently released Moon Knight, and he was the best thing about the limited series.
But while Abraham’s role in the MCU was relatively small, the actor typically doesn’t work very often, and the most notable thing he’s done in the years outside of Moon Knight is playing himself- even in a season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. However, Abraham’s appearance in the MCU was fairly recent, so there’s still time for him to return. Unfortunately, given that Moon Knight season 2 is uncertain, this could very well have been the first and last time fans would hear actor Khonshu’s voice.
Russell Crowe is usually an intense and dramatic actor, and that’s what makes all of his characters so alluring and three-dimensional. But in Thor: Love and Thunder, he played Zeus as an orgy-loving partier. The performance was bittersweet, as it was so refreshing to see the actor in a comedic role, but it also felt like director Taika Waititi wasted Crowe.
Fortunately, however, since the movie’s post-credits scene was setting up Hercules for a much larger role in the MCU, it could mean fans will see more of Zeus as well. And the next time fans see him, the god of lightning will hopefully be more three-dimensional than just planning his day around sex parties.
No other Oscar winner has been more wasted by Marvel Studios than Mahershala Ali, and even the finalist isn’t far behind. The actor has not one but two Oscars on his shelf, but the studio made him twiddle his thumbs waiting to play Blade for three years.
Ali was cast as the Vampire Hunter throughout 2019, and in that time audiences heard his voice in an Eternals post-credits scene and little else. Blade has been in development hell for years, and atypical of Marvel Studios, which is usually a well-oiled machine, the film just lost its director and the script is still far from complete.
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10 Oscar-winning actors who were underutilized in the MCU | Pretty Reel