Jonathan Majors Made Marvel Change All Of Its Plans Because Of His One Loki Scene
Jonathan Majors did such a great job in Loki that Marvel executives upgraded Kang to be the new Thanos.
If you’ve been following the Jonathan Majors legal drama that has placed his future Marvel appearances in jeopardy, then you’ve probably had the same question we had: why the hell did Disney hinge so many long-term plans around a single actor? As it turns out, Majors ended up being a victim of his own success as an actor. According to Collider, Marvel didn’t originally plan on making Majors’ Kang the next Big Bad for the franchise until they were impressed by his performances in both Loki and Quantumania.
The person behind this fascinating claim is veteran entertainment writer Joanna Robinson, who alleges that she heard from “someone who works for Marvel” that the original plan was not to make Jonathan Majors and his character “the center of everything.” But once executives began watching dailies for Loki and Quantumania, they were so impressed by his performance that they decided he could be a multi-movie threat worthy of Thanos.
That was particularly important because after Avengers: Endgame, Marvel felt they had “lost” their “varsity team,” and they were hoping that hiring such a gifted actor as their major antagonist would help elevate future MCU content. If this claim about Jonathan Majors is true, it would actually explain the ongoing mystery of why Marvel decided to make Kang’s proper introduction (remember, that was a different Variant back in Loki) a film as silly as Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
The answer seems simple: Majors had already been cast to appear in both Loki and Quantumania (a film that introduced Variants of multiple characters). Once executives saw many people positively responding to Majors’ performance, they likely figured it was easier to go all-in on a known quantity than try to cast someone else as the Big Bad for the Avengers to fight.
Such a revelation concerning Jonathan Majors’ casting might prove upsetting for fans that love thinking the MCU is always carefully planned, but it’s important to remember that some of the biggest narrative decisions began as one-off jokes. For example, the decision to have Nick Fury pop up and mention the Avengers was just meant to be a nerdy Easter egg from director Jon Favreau in the first Iron Man, just as Joss Whedon only threw Thanos into the Avengers as a fun gag for fans. After these Easter eggs received so much fan support, Marvel changed its plans to focus on them, and it looks like that’s exactly what they did when casting Kang the Conqueror.
Unfortunately, even Doctor Strange can’t peer far enough into the future to know whether or not Jonathan Majors will reprise his role in the MCU or not. He has already lost roles and endorsements following his arrest for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend, but the star’s lawyer maintains that not only is he innocent but that they have video evidence that will exonerate Majors. This may very well be true, but if Disney is still hesitant about casting him in future films, no amount of Infinity Stones will be able to resurrect his Marvel career from the ashes.