Exclusive: Gillian Anderson Joins Marvel In Major Role

By Michileen Martin | Published

gillian anderson marvel

For all the actors that have come in and out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, few of the stars from Fox’s classic sci-fi series The X-Files have made their way to the best-selling world of superheroes. But according to our trusted and proven source, that’s about to change. The Crown star Gillian Anderson has been cast in a big role in an upcoming Marvel screen project.

As far as who Anderson will play and in what film and/or TV series, our source wasn’t able to spill the beans, but we have some pretty good ideas. Considering the MCU has proven to be open-minded when it comes to gender-swapping its classic comic book characters, the possibilities of who Gillian Anderson could play for Marvel are endless. But in particular there are a number of roles she would be absolutely perfect for when it comes to the inevitable MCU entrance of the X-Men.

rose byrne
Rose Byrne in X-Men: First Class (2011)

Perhaps the most natural spot for Gillian Anderson among Marvel’s mutants would be as Dr. Moira MacTaggert. The character was played by Olivia Williams in 2007’s X-Men: The Last Stand, and later by Rose Byrne in 2011’s X-Men: First Class and 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse. However, while MacTaggert played a human ally to the mutants in those films, developments in the source material could potentially give the character a much larger role to play in the MCU. In the 2019-20 Marvel Comics event Dawn of X, we learn MacTaggert is a mutant with the ability to reincarnate herself and live out entire alternate lives It’s in large part the insight gained from these lives that leads the mutants of Marvel Comics to unite on the new island nation of Krakoa. With her presence, Anderson would be perfect for the role, particularly if Kevin Feige and co. choose the MCU’s Professor Charles Xavier to be closer to Patrick Stewart’s age than that of James McAvoy.

Another choice role Gillian Anderson could fill for Marvel would be the kind of part for which she is criminally under-utilized — as a villain. While she’s played few outright bad guys, Anderson has succeeded at some wonderfully chilling performances with characters capable of great moral ambiguity, such as in the crime thriller The Fall or as the titular serial killer’s therapist in Hannibal. Which villain do we think she should play? Well, we once again turn the world of the X-Men and the cruel psychic Cassandra Nova. Introduced in 2001’s New X-Men #114, Nova ultimately proved to be the twin sister of Charles Xavier and just as powerful.

Whoever Gillian Anderson plays in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the role will make her the first regular cast member of The X-Files to become part of Marvel’s narrative. Mitch Pileggi got kinda/sorta close by playing the villainous father of the titular heroes in Helstrom in the closing moments of its first season, but that first season proved to be its only season; and the show wasn’t canonically part of the MCU regardless. Robert Patrick of Terminator 2 fame did play a white supremacist supervillain — the White Dragon — in season 1 of Peacemaker, but of course that was for who the late Stan Lee used to call the “Distinguished Competition.”