Ben Mendelsohn will spar with Brie Larson in Captain Marvel.
The Rogue One actor is in talks to play the villain in Marvel Studios’ first female-fronted stand-alone, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.
Filmmaking duo Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, who directed Mendelsohn in 2015’s Mississippi Grind, are helming the pic. The most recent draft for the 1990s-set feature comes from Tomb Raider writer Geneva Robertson-Dworet.
Captain Marvel, which has a release date of March 8, 2019, follows Carol Danvers (Larson), an Air Force pilot who gains powers after her DNA becomes fused with an alien after an accident. Samuel L. Jackson will play Nick Fury in the film.
There is no word yet on who exactly Mendelsohn will be playing. But at San Diego Comic-Con earlier this year, Marvel Studios head Kevin Fiege told Hall H that the movie’s villains will be the The Skrulls, a race of shape-changing aliens who were introduced early on as antagonists in Marvel’s comic book universe. They have been at the center of key storylines, including the 1970s Avengers arc The Kree-Skrull War, which saw them battle the Kree, an alien race featured in the 2014 movie Guardians of the Galaxy. They also used their shape-shifting abilities to infiltrate Earth over a number of years in the comics, resulting in the 2008-09 storyline Secret Invasion, in which it was revealed that key members of the comic book universe had long ago been replaced by aliens and they were now ready to take over.
Captain Marvel will not be the first foray into comic book fare for the English actor, who previously appeared in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises. Mendelsohn will next be seen as King George in the Winston Churchill drama The Darkest Hour and is set for Steven Speilberg’s Ready Player One. He is repped by CAA and the U.K.’s United.