Elizabeth Olsen Gives Important Advice To Actors Joining Marvel

Elizabeth Olsen warns new MCU actors to consider only signing on for one movie instead of multi-film contracts.

By Zack Zagranis | Updated

WandaVision star Elizabeth Olsen has some sage advice for any actors considering jumping on the Marvel train. The actress advises any thespian joining the MCU for the first time to “Just give them one.” As IndieWire reports, the actress dropped the juicy nugget of free Hollywood guidance during a recent episode of the Happy Sad Confused podcast.

Elizabeth is, of course, referring to signing a contract for one film versus the multi-picture deals other Marvel stars have been roped into in the past. The 34-year-old said she came up with the advice as a result of some of her fellow actors asking her about possibly joining Disney‘s cash cow. Olsen stated that joining the MCU on a movie-by-movie basis allows an actor to have “more control” over the trajectory of their career as well as more control creatively.

Elizabeth Olsen certainly knows what she’s talking about. Olsen’s Marvel character Wanda Maximoff first appeared in an after-credits scene in 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier before taking a larger role as antagonist-turned-Avenger in the following year’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. Yet despite being with the MCU since Phase 2, Olsen is one of the few actors not to shackle themselves to the Marvel brand with a multi-movie contract.

Similar high-profile members of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, such as Captain America actor Chris Evans and Mr. MCU himself, Robert Downey Jr., were given six-movie contracts to sign when they joined Disney’s fledgling superhero experiment. If six movies sounds like a big commitment, it’s nothing compared to the nine-picture deals signed by Samuel L. Jackson and Sebastian Stan. Jackson, in particular, has been with Marvel since 2008—15 years, wearing the same eyepatch and leather duster.

That’s not to say that multi-film contracts are inherently bad. On one hand, they give an actor like Elizabeth Olsen job stability and guarantee that if the actor goes off and makes a movie for another studio that bombs, they will have another chance to redeem themselves when the next Marvel movie comes out. On the other hand, they can feel extremely restrictive and make an actor feel like they’re chained to a particular studio whether they like it or not.

Multi-movie contracts can also lock an actor into a salary that might seem small if their initial film ends up being a huge success.

elizabeth olsen

This leads to a lot of actors in long-running franchises like Harry Potter having to renegotiate their contracts after a few movies. Meanwhile, if an actor with a single movie contract, like Elizabeth Olsen, stars in a huge mega-blockbuster like Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame, she is then in the perfect position to negotiate a bigger payoff in exchange for agreeing to be in further projects. With the success of both WandaVision and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Elizabeth Olsen is poised to make some major dough if Marvel tries to woo her back for a WandaVision season 2 or any further Avengers movies.

Elizabeth Olsen ultimately admitted to being proud of the work she’s done for Marvel while still feeling frustrated over her MCU duties getting in the way of her pursuit of Indie roles. “I had job security,” said Olsen, but the actress admitted it was at the expense of her other artistic ambitions. Elizabeth concluded her candid interview by saying, “this is me being my most honest.”

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