For over a decade, Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans were the leads of the MCU. Downey Jr. introduced us to this universe in 2008’s Iron Man, Evans epitomized its purest example of heroism in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger, and both led it to the all-conquering Avengers: Endgame. This was their swansong, going out on top as they put the world to rights after Thanos’ snap.
Their departure leaves the MCU in dire need of some new figureheads, though. Sure, we still have Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk, but they and most other existing Marvel heroes just don’t feel prominent in the same way that Downey Jr.and Evans did. That could change soon, however, as sources close to WGTC – the same ones who told us Ben Affleck was returning in The Flash – say that Tom Holland is eager for his Spider-Man and the soon-to-be-introduced Wolverine to be the new “faces of the MCU” and lead the franchise going forward.
For Spidey, this makes a good amount of sense. Holland’s take on the web-slinger is certainly among the most popular Marvel characters, as proven by the horror that greeted the 2019 news that the Sony Pictures deal had broken down. It also appears that Spider-Man: No Way Home will be key to the multiversal future and point to where the overarching story is heading next.
And as for Wolverine? Well, he’ll be appearing sooner or later and the character’s popularity will mean he’ll instantly become a figurehead. As such, Marvel Studios are certain to be taking the search for a star very seriously. The rumor mill has put forward actors like Taron Egerton, Daniel Radcliffe and Charlie Hunnam for the part, but I’m betting they’ll pick someone relatively unknown that they can tie into a multi-film contract. That might sound risky, but then again, nobody knew who Hugh Jackman was when he was cast in 2000’s X-Men.
In any case, the MCU is still in post-Endgame mode, so let’s hope we’ve got a better idea of their plans by the end of 2021.