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Captain Marvel won’t be nearly as long as Avengers: Endgame

Who’s the captain now? If you watched the post-credits scene in Avengers: Infinity War, you know it’s Captain Marvel (Brie Larson). And thanks to two action-packed trailers, we know *a lot* of info awaits us — head to the plot section below for more on those details, and head to our sister site GameSpot for theories on how Carol Danvers will save us all.

The latest tidbits:

It can be tough to stay on top of the latest buzz about this much-anticipated film. Here are three of the latest bits of news:

Timing is everything

In the wake of reports that Avengers: Endgame could be three hours long, it was kind of comforting to learn that Captain Marvel isn’t pushing fans’ bladders to such an extent. AMC Theaters is currently reporting that the film is just 2 hours, 4 minutes long, according to ComicBook.com. And as we’ve already learned, the film is rated PG-13 (no surprise), for “sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and brief suggestive language.”

Fury unleashed

Expect to see plenty of Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury in Captain Marvel. We already know that since the film is set back in the 1990s, Fury still sports both eyes and not his famous eyepatch. But producer Jonathan Schwartz told Mashable that the film is “almost a two-hander” between the Captain and Fury. And don’t call him Nick. “Everybody calls him Fury, even his mother,” Jackson told Mashable.

Push it real good

Star Brie Larson shared a brief video on Twitter where she actually pushes an almost-5,000-pound Jeep, complete with a full tank of gas, for 60 seconds. Larson called it, “a training highlight.” Are we sure she’s not playing the Incredible Hulk?

More news and rumors:

On Feb. 8, Marvel released a new TV spot showing Captain Marvel screaming at a Skrull before kicking him smack in the face (no, not the old lady shape-shifter on the bus, she gets a punch instead). Also, seeing Nick Fury without his eye patch never feels right.

The studio also revealed two new stunning posters for the film.

Captain Marvel opens in the US on March 8. But if you miss it in theaters, don’t expect to watch it at home on Netflix. On Feb. 6, Disney CEO Bob Iger noted it will be the company’s first film to skip Netflix and instead head to Disney’s own Disney+ streaming service. Iger shared that news in a conference call with Wall Street analysts, Deadline reported. (More info on Disney+ here, but if you love Marvel and Star Wars movies, better rejigger the budget to soon include another subscription fee, whatever it may be.)

And if you want to plan for next fall’s collectible shopping, an impressive figure of the Captain that really looks like Brie Larson is coming near the end of the year. Or spring for the deluxe version, which comes with Goose/Chewie the not-quite-cat.

Of course, the Captain made a quick appearance at the Super Bowl, as Marvel released a 30-second ad that featured Danvers in both her pre-hero days as an Air Force pilot, and in her superhero role.

If posters are your thing, Marvel released a pretty cool international posted on Feb. 4. It earned nearly a million likes in just two days.

And back in January, Marvel released 10 posters showing characters ranging from the Captain herself to the character that looks like a cat, but has a purr-fect secret.

Tickets are now on sale for Captain Marvel on Fandango and some sites, and they’re selling fast as a photon blast. In its first 24 hours of sales, the film moved into Fandango’s top three best-selling Marvel Cinematic Universe movies as far as presales go, alongside Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther.

Special features and offers are also available at different theaters. AMC Theaters has a “fan screening” that begins an hour earlier than the early showings, at 6 p.m. local time on Thursday, March 7. AMC’s movie page says the screening includes “exclusive intro content, and get a collectible coin and cameo popcorn.” Alamo Drafthouse theaters are selling tickets with a Captain Marvel pin or glass add-on from collectible company Mondo. We will update this if we see other callouts from specific theaters, so check back!

Also, star Brie Larson is backing a Go Fund Me account that will ensure girls from various backgrounds in Los Angeles get to see the film. Now that’s a super move.

Along with the ticket announcement came a new teaser, this time with at least 30 seconds of new footage. 

The second trailer, which came out Dec. 3, added more depth to the plot details sketched out in the first trailer, which arrived in September. Why does Captain Marvel matter so much? It all goes back to that Infinity War scene.

Now playing: Watch this: Captain Marvel second trailer packs a punc

In the scene, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) find themselves in the middle of the Thanos-sparked chaos as half the universe’s population disappears. Fury manages to use his pager and apparently sends a message to Captain Marvel just as he, too, disappears into dust. Since her film arrives before the next Avengers films, it would seem she’s got an important role to play in Avengers: Endgame, possibly saving the universe from an invasion of the Skrulls. Marvel Studios

One rumor claims that it’s Captain Marvel herself who saves Tony “Iron Man” Stark from his adrift spaceship, as seen in the Endgame trailer. She’s got space commander experience, after all. If NASA can’t get to him, maybe she can.

And when Infinity War was released on digital in August, a keen-eyed Reddit user pointed out that one of Thanos’ children, Cull Obsidian, was seen wearing a piece of cloth with Captain Marvel’s colors and design on it. What that means is yet uncertain, but it adds even more anticipation to the mix.

In early January 2019, two new videos were released. A new teaser goes full-on 1990s, with Nick Fury joking about Captain Marvel’s grunge look and Elastica playing in the background.

There’s also a behind-the-scenes featurette in which Larson discusses her strength training for the film and the time she spent with Air Force pilots.

Now that filming has officially wrapped, stay tuned for even more updates.

Who is Captain Marvel?

Captain Marvel? Not exactly the best-known superhero ever. But her film will be the 21st in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and if she’s going to get that kind of post-credits attention, fans had best brush up on her dossier before her film comes out. 

You can dive deep into her background and history with this explainer. A short version: This iteration of the character, Carol Danvers, was created in 1968, and was an Air Force pilot, CIA agent, security director for NASA and writer. She’s also struggled with alcohol, like Iron Man Tony Stark, and her personal battles were depicted in numerous comic-book issues.

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Captain Marvel may not be as well-known as some superheroes, but she’s about to take center stage.   Marvel Studios

Her superpowers came from a Kree alien named Mar-vell, the original Captain Marvel, and include flight, super strength, the ability to absorb and use energy, and to shoot energy blasts and lasers from her hands.

And –spoiler ahead –she has an extra power that could be a game-changer, co-star Samuel L. Jackson revealed. Stop reading here if you don’t want to know…

“Now we know that we need something that’s as powerful as Thanos,” Jackson told Entertainment Tonight. “And at some point, we’ll find out how powerful she is and all the things that she’s capable of. She’s one of the few people in the Marvel universe that can time travel, so…”

Yep, time travel, which is something those Avengers from Infinity War could sure use about now. Moving on!

Numerous characters have taken on the Captain Marvel name, and even DC Comics has had an (unrelated) Captain Marvel character (aka Shazam), though to date the Marvel universe doesn’t have a “Captain DC.”

Release date, plot, photos

Captain Marvel is due out March 8, 2019, in the US and UK, and March 7 in Australia about two months before Avengers 4 hits. And after the EW cover reveal, we have a lot more info about the villains (Skrulls) and the heroes (sort of).

For example, thanks to EW we know a bit more about where we’ll begin the film and what we’ll see: “Captain Marvel sidesteps the traditional origin-story template, and when it begins, Carol already has her powers,” writes Devan Coogan.

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Marvel Studios

And Larson gave us more on the extremely human character when speaking to EW: “She can be aggressive, and she can have a temper, and she can be a little invasive and in your face. She’s also quick to jump to things, which makes her amazing in battle because she’s the first one out there and doesn’t always wait for orders. But the (not) waiting for orders is, to some, a character flaw.”

We’ve also learned that when it begins with her powers, we’ll see Danvers as a part of the elite Kree military team Starforce, which is led by Jude Law’s (still) enigmatic commander, and that her main foe will be the Skrulls, with Ben Mendelsohn as their leader Talos, who is spearheading a Skrull invasion of Earth.

So will this Skrull invasion be the start of the MCU version of comic crossover event Secret Invasion?? No way to know for sure yet, but it’s definitely hinted at in the EW report:

“Before long, Carol finds herself back on Earth with new questions about her past. And she’s got a formidable enemy in the form of the Skrulls — the notorious Marvel baddies made all the more dangerous by their shape-shifting abilities.”

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Talos (Mendelsohn) left leads the Skrulls.   Chuck Zlotnick/Marvel Studios

The film isn’t focusing solely on Captain Marvel finding out about Thanos’ slaughter of half the universe (see: Avengers: Infinity War) and leaping in to help. It’s set in the 1990s, which may explain why Nick Fury is reaching out to her on a pager, not a smartphone.  (Speaking of the 1990s, star Brie Larson was almost born in that decade — Oct. 1, 1989 — which makes some of us feel as ancient as an unopened bottle of Zima.)

Why the 1990s? Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige says all will be revealed in the story, but also told the Toronto Sun the time period would feel fresh. “It allows us to play in an area that we have never played in before, and tapping into a ’90s action genre was fun for us,” Feige said.

Even the movie’s website is decked out in all the 1990s web craziness we used to see online, with rainbow text and random flashes and more.

So what’s going on in the film? Marvel says it’s about Carol Danvers taking on the Captain Marvel role to protect the Earth from a galactic war between the Kree and the Skrulls, both alien races familiar to comics readers. (The comic version of this war played out in 1971 and 1972, if you want to consult your archived Avengers issues for possible spoilers.)

Who are the combatants? The Skrulls are a race of shape-shifting aliens that can take on not just the shape, but the memories and powers of those they mimic. (Looks like the sweet-faced old lady Carol punches in the trailers, who gets in a few good kicks of her own, is likely one of them.) The Kree are a scientifically and technologically advanced militaristic race, some of whom have blue skin. Getting in the way of either of them is about as smart as tugging on Superman’s cape — oops, wrong comics company.

As for Captain Marvel herself, you may know star Larson best from her Oscar-winning role as a kidnap victim forced to bear and raise her son in captivity in 2015’s Room. She also starred in 2017’s Kong: Skull Island.

Backing her up in the film are some familiar faces for Marvel fans, and a few new ones.

  • Samuel L. Jackson will play a young (pre-eye patch) Nick Fury (as you saw above). 
  • Clark Gregg is returning as S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson, who’s dead in the modern Marvel movie timeline, but alive in the 1990s-set film. 
  • Lee Pace returns as Ronan the Accuser, a fanatical member of the Kree alien race last seen in Guardians of the Galaxy. (In August 2018, Pace posted what appears to be a vacation video where he’s wearing a Captain Marvel hat and sporting a cute, scruffy vacation beard.)
  • Djimon Hounsou returns as Korath, a Kree ally of Ronan and feared intergalactic hunter, who also appeared in Guardians of the Galaxy. 
  • Gemma Chan plays Captain Minnerva, a Kree geneticist. (Some sources give her name as Minn-Erva, or Doctor Minerva.)
  • Jude Law plays Walter Lawson/Mar-Vell, Carol’s mentor as she takes on her superpowered role. (Or does he? See below.)
  • Ben Mendelsohn plays the film’s main villain, believed to be the leader of the Skrulls. 
  • Annette Bening has signed on, in what will be the four-time Oscar nominee’s first-ever comic-book movie. She’s reportedly playing a scientist, and Variety reports that scientist is likely to be Carol’s mother.
  • Carol also has a cat, named Goose (a change from the Chewie name of the comics). Her purr-fect pal turns out to be something special beneath that soft fur coat.
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Marvel Studios

Big possible spoiler ahead. More rumors about the cast leaked out in November 2018, when a Reddit user shared images of Captain Marvel Funko Pop figures. Until now, reports have said Jude Law is playing the original Mar-Vell. But then in the original Funko image, Law’s character was labeled as Yon-Rogg. (Keanu Reeves reportedly was first offered the role, but turned it down to star in John Wick 3.

That name might mean nothing to many, but CNET sister site Comic Book.com says, “In the comics, Yon-Rogg is a villain who hates Mar-Vell and makes multiple attempts to disgrace him among the Kree or to outright kill him.” 

When the figures actually went live for sale, that character had been renamed Star Commander. So is Marvel trying to hide a big character secret? Sometimes, toys turn out to be more than just kid stuff.

Cast

Now playing: Watch this: Captain Marvel trailer shows Carol Danvers’ backstory,…

This article was first published May 1, 2018, and is frequently updated as new information is released.

How to watch every MCU property in the perfect order: From Marvel films to the shows on Netflix, here’s the best order to experience the MCU.

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