We’re all pretty well acquainted with Black Panther’s father by this point.
We got a good look at him in Civil War, as he exploded in a rain of PG-13 smoke. Conveniently, he, like everyone else in the MCU, doesn’t actually have more than four ounces of blood in his body.
Now, though, we know what T’Challa’s mother, Ramonda, looks like too, as Marvel have announced that she’ll be played by Angela Bassett.
You’ll have seen Bassett if you’re a fan of American Horror Story, and you’ll have heard her if you like Bojack Horseman, as she does a lot of voice work on the show.
You also might remember her as Doctor Waller in a certain DC movie.
No, not Amanda Waller in Suicide Squad—instead, Bassett played a smart part in the wholly forgettable Green Lantern movie. If you don’t remember her, take that as a blessing, as the less you can recall of the movie, the better your brain must be at filtering out unpleasant memories.
This is by no means the first time that an actor has found themselves playing a role in both a Marvel and a DC movie. This kind of trading happens with noteworthy frequency, suggesting that it might not be an accident.
The rules seem to be simple: if you played a role in any DC movie made before Man of Steel, Marvel would love to get their hands on you just to rub it in Warner Bros’ faces.
Similarly, if you were in any Marvel movie before Iron Man, DC will give you a huge paycheck, even if all you did was get beat up by Peter Parker in a brief scene that explains how his Spider-Sense works.
It’s fun how vicious the DC/Marvel rivalry is getting with these movies, and yet how incestuous the casting directors of these projects seem to be. If you’ve proven yourself on the set of a superhero movie, even in a bit part, there’s a good chance you’ll have job offers rolling in for years to come.
Of course, while Marvel and DC duke it out in a contest to hire as many of each others’ actors as possible, Fox is stuck in the middle with an X-Men franchise it can’t do anything with, wondering why all the Fantastic Four actors keep abandoning the studio.
If Fox is planning a rumored reboot of their cinematic superhero universe, get ready to watch both Disney and Warner Bros rush for a chance to snap up as many X-Men alumni as possible.
Jackman, Fassbender, McAvoy, McKellen, Stewart—the list goes on. There are plenty of ripe hires for both companies that Marvel and DC are desperate to fight over.
Because at this stage, these actors aren’t valuable just as movie ticket selling points.
They’re pawns in an enormous inter-studio chess tournament that can’t possibly end well.