In case you weren’t already aware, Disney Plus’ forthcoming series Moon Knight, starring Oscar Isaac, deals heavily with Egyptian gods and lore — so much so that show execs had an Egyptian archeologist on speed dial during production.
Show writer Jeremy Slater has been fairly active on Twitter in the run-up to the show’s premiere, answering fan questions and providing little insights into the filming.
There’s a lot to get right when pulling from Egyptian lore, and there’s also a lot that Marvel could get wrong. So how did they make sure they were being not only respectful to the source material but also to the culture in general? Turns out they had help from an expert.
On Tuesday (March 29), Twitter user @TulinWrites asked about how the writing room handled the Egyptian lore in the show.
“Can you talk about how your writers’ room prepared to tackle the Egyptian mythology aspects of the show? Were there any books you read before or any expert consults? I’m loving the detail, care, and symbolism in the episodes while watching.”
Slater gave a surprising response, saying they took it so seriously that they ‘actually’ had an archeologist on speed dial to help.
“Not only did Marvel provide us with a wealth of research material, but we actually had a real-life Egyptian archeologist on speed dial for advice, ideas and fact-checking.”
Getting the Egyptian culture correct wasn’t just important for Slater, either. Egyptian director Mohamed Diab, who directed four of the show’s six episodes, told SFX Magazine, via Games Radar, that Moon Knight’s powers come from the Egyptian moon god named Khonshu, and he wanted it to feel authentic.
“[It’s] part of the show because it’s part of the comic book. It’s part of how he gets his powers. It’s ingrained in it. There was definitely room to play [in Moon Knight] but keep it as authentic as possible, in the realm of being fantastical. Even in the original comic books they did a great job of researching and trying to make Egypt authentic.”
The director also pointed fingers at other superhero depictions of Egypt, namely in DC’s Wonder Woman 1984, saying it wasn’t up to snuff.
“You never see Cairo. You always see Jordan shot for Cairo, Morocco shot for Cairo, sometimes Spain shot for Cairo. This really angers us. I remember seeing Wonder Woman 1984 and there was a big sequence in Egypt and it was a disgrace for us. You had a sheik—that doesn’t make any sense to us. Egypt looked like a country from the Middle Ages. It looked like the desert.”
We’ll all get to see how the show handles Egypt when Moon Knight premieres on March 30.