A Female Superhero Movie From Marvel Studios? Why An Ensemble Film Is A Better Idea

A solo female superhero movie seems to be inevitable from Marvel Studios but will they turn to Ms. Marvel? Should they? The case for why an ensemble female superhero movie is the better route for Kevin Feige and co. to take.

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By Mark Julian - 9/22/2013

A modern, female superhero movie is an inevitability that will occur sooner rather than later. And with Marvel Studios currently charting the course in the syperhero movie genre, many assume they will be the first to try and crack the code for a superheroine film. However, unlike Warner Bros., who has Wonder Woman as their obvious first and only choice, Marvel doesn't have such a recognizable superheroine in its stable. Many fans and critics alike expect that Kevin Feige and the Marvel brain-trust will turn to Ms. Marvel aka Carol Danvers for their female superhero feature film. And with the Kree set to be introduced in 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy, a Ms. Marvel movie very well could spin out of those events. But from Disney's perspective, is that the most dynamic and bankable option? Like Wonder Woman, the rogues gallery for Ms. Marvel is anything but stellar - in fact, Ms. Marvel may have the weaker of the two. Another weak aspect of Ms. Marvel's history is the fact that her civilian identity is not closely tied to her powers. For example, Stark Industries is essential to the creation of the Iron Man armor. Wayne Industries is a critical component for Batman as it supplies the majority of his gadgets. Superman utilizes his role as Daily Planet reporter to determine where he is needed most. But Carol Danver's role as an Air Force pilot has very little to do with the acquisition or development of the powers she receives from Kree soldier, Mar-Vell. Her occupation could be changed or she could be a former Air-Force member turned S.H.I.E.L.D. agent in a movie but that would be a departure from her comic book origins and something hardcore fans may not be willing to overlook.

http://media.bestlittlesites.com/images/users/uploads/33503/MCU Lady Sif Gamora Black Widow.png
The female heroes of the MCU.

Instead of introducing a totally new character, Marvel should take a page out of their own playbook and have another Avengers-esque team up film. But not with Captain America, Iron Man and Thor but with established female heroes like Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders), Agent 13 (Emily VanCamp), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Gamora (Zoë Saldana) and Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander). Black Widow, Maria Hill and Lady Siff are already fan favorites and Gamora and Agent 13 are set to make their Marvel Studios debuts in Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain America: The Winter Soldier. A team-up approach would diffuse the enormous pressure any individual project and actress would face as it tries to carry the hopes and dreams of the geek girl nation. And make no mistake, there's going to be enormous pressure. A failure at this juncture would effectively put the female superhero movie movement in the coffin. Rather than search for an actress capable of carrying that load, wouldn't it be more sensible to go the group route? One of the aspects that Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth and co. stated they enjoyed about The Avengers is that they didn't have to shoulder the load alone like they do in their respective solo films.

Justice League Fury episode
The Justice League episode 'Fury' depicted a rogue Amazon who launched germ warfare on the male population of Earth.

The group dynamic also opens up the villain choice. Ms. Marvel doesn't have any notable villains. Same can be said for She-Hulk, Black Widow, or Lady Sif. But as a group, the threat choice would open up to come from virtually any avenue be it of Asgard, S.H.I.E.L.D. or cosmic origin. That said, the obvious question is why would only the female superheroes assemble and not the male? There are a number of explanations possible - a virus or spell that only attacks the male half of the population, a mission to a planet that only supports lifeforms that have xx chromosomes, or a job that requires infiltration of a female only villain group. There are a number of ways a talented writer could position the film so as to require an all female superhero team to be assembled.


Karnilla the Norn Queen would be a great MCU villain.

There's a high chance that Marvel Studios will produce a female superhero movie and there's a real chance that the studio could choose Ms. Marvel to lead it. There's nothing wrong with that but a better route to take would be a superhero team-up film with the already established female characters like Maria Hill, Black Widow, Lady Sif and others. Marvel could even include Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) and Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) in supporting roles. A team up film would give a wider array of villain or villainess options and allow Marvel to spread out the pressure inherent with trying to make the first modern, successful female superhero film.
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starkresilient - 9/22/2013, 4:10 PM
someone is forgetting pepper potts. her getting a suit would rock too in this movie
CherryBomb - 9/22/2013, 4:10 PM
We need to see a major female villain.
I think we will see that with Nebula.
Havenless - 9/22/2013, 4:10 PM
I have no idea what you're trying to say with this article.

Probably because I'll never bother to read it.
CherryBomb - 9/22/2013, 4:11 PM
A female character can had a solo movie.
They need to approach her as they would a male CBM character.
If they do that then it will work.
McNyagano - 9/22/2013, 4:13 PM
@starkresilient

Agreed. :')

TheWolverine08 - 9/22/2013, 4:14 PM
Honestly don't see a female superhero film working, Wonder Woman is the best shot, and it's still debatable if her solo film could be a success.
CherryBomb - 9/22/2013, 4:15 PM
But no, I don't think a female team up movie will work.
A bad ass female character needs to demand respect on her own.

Ms Marvel and Wonder Woman are two superheroes who are hugely powerful in their universes and can easily go against their male allies.

They need to be shown as strong, aggressive women who are just as brutal as men can be. Not like Elektra or Catwoman in their movies, they seemed so weak to me.
AlanWarlock - 9/22/2013, 4:15 PM
Your premise is absurd. There is no way you could gather those characters in a way that wouldn't come off as contrived for the sole purpose of an all-female film.
Wallymelon - 9/22/2013, 4:15 PM
it needs to be a solo film before you can have a team film. at least for her character, and a team film of all the females in the mcu has nothing to do with the overall plot. plus the statement of a female hero being successful should come from a solo film. its got a bit more to prove. a team film could just be successful because it isnt a focusing on one character.
FoxKnox - 9/22/2013, 4:19 PM
Bankable option?

This is a studio that sold audiences on Iron Man, a project that many predicted would be doomed for failure because of it's lack of "bankability". They brought in profit again with Thor, another relatively unknown character to general audiences at the time, and Captain America. And they're doing a movie about The Guardians of the Galaxy now, a team at least twice as obscure as any of those three.

At this point, with all of their post-Iron Man success, Marvel as a studio could probably put out anything and sell it on their name alone over a specific character property.

So yes, a solo female movie can work. Easily. Suggesting a female solo film needs any sort of extra boost is the equivalent of saying Dr. Strange needs to be in a team-up movie with Man-Thing before he gets his own film. It's unnecessary and unfair.
Natetrix79 - 9/22/2013, 4:22 PM
Ummmmmm....no. You can't just throw a bunch of women together & make a team, Ms. Marvel is the best bet. She can fight the kree in her movie & maybe even get an assist from the Guardians or the Nova corps. It doesn't need to be a trilogy she can pop up in Avengers 3 as a team member or lead her own team of avengers.
TheSonicScrew - 9/22/2013, 4:23 PM
I get that this article has good intentions, but it's a bit silly. The reasons needed to constitute an all-female team might work in a cartoon, but in the more realistic setting of a live-action movie they would sound utterly stupid.

Also, it kind of suggest that:

a) A woman-only superhero team would only form and be needed if ALL men disappeared/were incapacitated? Kiiiind of implying women are second-rate.

b) A solo female superhero wouldn't be strong enough to succeed on its own, there has to be a bunch of them to bring it to the level of a solo male hero film

Again, clearly well intentioned but a bit misguided. A CAPTAIN MARVEL (seriously, that's who she is now, people need to stop referring to her as Miss) movie with Carol Danvers could do wonderfully.
CherryBomb - 9/22/2013, 4:24 PM
She Hulk would be INCREDIBLE on the Avengers.
They need to make it happen like ... Soon.
CherryBomb - 9/22/2013, 4:26 PM
Marvel is in a great position where everything they touch can probably turn to gold.
So they need to just go ahead with Ms Marvel the Movie and see how it goes.

Maybe if it becomes successful, DC will quit stalling and give us a Wonder Woman movie.
SuperGuy83 - 9/22/2013, 4:26 PM
Lois Lane is My Favorite Female Superhero
McNyagano - 9/22/2013, 4:31 PM
@SuperGuy83

Not so much after MOS -_-
Natetrix79 - 9/22/2013, 4:33 PM
If Thanos is the main baddie in the 3rd Avengers then they will need more than the original team & the Guardians I can see two Avenger teams or the Avengers split into 2 groups 1 lead by Cap & the other by Ms. Marvel ( she has to be Ms. Marvel before she can be Captain Marvel) so they can attack him on different fronts.
usclerkguy - 9/22/2013, 4:34 PM
Heroes For Hire
Pheezmatic - 9/22/2013, 4:36 PM
I agree with cherry bomb.....just ake it as you would a male movie...why do they have to group up to be able to make it work? Would a solo film be too much pressure for a poor weak little girl? bullshit...Theres lots of beautiful talented actresses out there who could be awesome.... honestly the problem is finding that aggressiveness in an actress. Few actresses have that attitude that can eat up captain america and tony stark. But look hard enough Marvel, she's out there...just cast her and make it happen already. All this tip toeing about if it'll work or not is ridiculous. Make it happen already....stop bein scared.
Indy - 9/22/2013, 4:38 PM
Supergirl was hinted at in Man of steel.
Enphlieuwince - 9/22/2013, 4:41 PM
Sorry, I'm with them. No thanks, we'll leave the safe plays for DC. We like to put it all on the line because THIS IS MARVEL! (in my Leonidas voice)
Lockjaw - 9/22/2013, 4:42 PM
Ms.Marvel ftw!
Enphlieuwince - 9/22/2013, 4:43 PM
Just joking for all those with their Superman underoos in a bunch...
Kingbj - 9/22/2013, 4:43 PM
No no no
Lockjaw - 9/22/2013, 4:43 PM
Hopefully She Hulk will appear in the next Hulk movie as well...
Enphlieuwince - 9/22/2013, 4:45 PM
@Intruder, I Spit On Your Grave was brutal...

I think the Underworld and Resident Evil franchises prove it can be done and well. No need for fear, just get a great writer and a believable lead.
mctrinket - 9/22/2013, 4:47 PM
Haven't they already said if they do a solo female flick it would be Black Widow?
aztecRaingod - 9/22/2013, 4:49 PM
Terrific idea. We should also throw in Beyonce, Paris Hilton, Miley Cyrus. You can never have too many women, because everyone knows a single woman couldnt hold anyones attention.

smh
6of13 - 9/22/2013, 4:49 PM
Really interesting idea.
RamonSuarez - 9/22/2013, 5:00 PM
It has to make sense to put these characters together. Just throwing a bunch of female heroes together for no apparent reason looks gimmicky. An Agents of SHIELD movie could combine Widow, Mockingbird, and Ms. Marvel together against HYDRA. Something like this would make sense within the logic of the Marvel Universe and not seem like pandering. Throw in Hawkeye as a side character and now you are talking. A shame Fox took Viper she would have been a fitting antagonist.
Mrsinister - 9/22/2013, 5:04 PM
There are so many villains that it would be easy to use one a villain for another character instead of its natural choice.
Tainted87 - 9/22/2013, 5:08 PM
I love ensemble movies. Makes it all seem a whole lot more enjoyable. Offers something for everyone.

But they shouldn't be there because a studio is afraid of women under-performing.

It's funny, at work - we have this "people week" which is scheduled to correspond with the annual Crew Rally. Each store has to pick a certain theme, and the GM is supposed to oversee "costumes" or attire.

So this year, it was superheroes. My GM went to Wal-Mart and bought a whole bunch of superhero shirts. The lovely ladies sported the bat logo, and the "s" logo. Everyone else got Flash, Green Lantern, Iron Man, Punisher, Cap, etc...

You look at the movies that didn't work - and the reason why they didn't work was pretty obvious - they were just horrible movies.

That said, one of the greatest X-Men stories out there revolves around a predominantly female team - Mutant Massacre. It'd be great to see Storm take charge and lead WITHOUT powers, to have Rogue rescue people, to have Kitty protect her fellow X-Men with her phasing abilities. One of the best scenes feels like something out of the Walking Dead, where they've returned to the Mansion and Storm is feeling like a failure because so many died and so many of her team got hurt. Callisto slaps her around physically and emotionally, demanding that she stop feeling sorry for herself.

I'd love to see that adapted.
94beyond - 9/22/2013, 5:12 PM
I think to time has come to bring not just female heroes but villains like Madame Masque, Queen Of The Skrulls and more importantly Amora The Enchantress the most dangerous of all. With all the talk of Ms. Marvel, I think She-Hulk should be considered as well.
JasonMotes - 9/22/2013, 5:13 PM
It's CAPTAIN Marvel not Ms.
Tainted87 - 9/22/2013, 5:15 PM
She-Hulk would be fantastic in a tv series.
Considering how Jen is a lawyer, you'd have a lot of potential stories. It'd be very much like the Bixby Hulk series.
sanyaya - 9/22/2013, 5:15 PM
ms marvel bitches
Scorpion8125 - 9/22/2013, 5:16 PM
HHmmmmmmmm

I believe that Mr. Julian has the kernel of an excellent idea.

Maybe 2 or 3 females in the lead of a Ms. Marvel movie with a little Nick Fury or Bruce Banner thrown in....

4 or 5 fem heroes would be too hokey... 2 or maybe 3 could work with a great script.

I see.... Ms. Marvel & Shield facing an approaching threat(?) in Gamora....

Then Avengers 3...4...5? BOOOOM!!!!!!

My pants & head both exploded.

sanyaya - 9/22/2013, 5:16 PM
wonder woman aint going to happen mother[frick]ers
WYLEEJAY - 9/22/2013, 5:19 PM
Interesting idea. I like my idea though. A Captain Marvel movie, that introduces Captain Mar-Vell to Carol Danvers, she's gets her powers from him accidentally just like the comics. Team up time as Ms Marvel, Captain Marvel sacrifices his life to save Earth, and Carol takes up the mantle of Captain Marvel at the end credits. I know that would be a quick escalation to the title of Captain Marvel, but it would mean more to the character. The title of the movie would have double meaning.
jcfrommars9 - 9/22/2013, 5:24 PM
@TheWolverine08

Honestly don't see a female superhero film working, Wonder Woman is the best shot, and it's still debatable if her solo film could be a success.

I do see it working. But it's just like any other movie. The right people have to be behind it to make it work.
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