Did You Hear? is a weekly examination of headlines in the entertainment industry and a take on what they could mean for the future of the industry and (often), the little geeky bubble that we occupy!

Captain Marvel 2 Enters Pre-Production

Just yesterday Variety broke the news that Captain Marvel had begun pre-production on its second movie. Marvel Studios has apparently entered final negotiations with WandaVision staff writer Megan McDonnell. Personally, I think it’s awesome they are eyeing a female writer to keep Captain Marvel’s story moving forward.

This choice could also reflect on the quality of WandaVision. Rumours are swirling that Falcon & Winter Soldier is in rough shape, but if Marvel Studios is willing to pluck a staff writer and give her a movie for the more powerful character in the MCU they must love the work she is doing on WandaVision. Perhaps this is the show poised to be the breakout star of Marvel Studio’s Disney+ tie-ins?

WandaVision will debut later this year, with no set release date and Captain Marvel 2 is shooting for a 2022 worldwide release.

Amazon Lord of the Rings Series Cast

AND production will begin in February claims a report from Variety last week. The main cast includes: Robert Aramayo, Owain Arthur and Nazanin Boniadi, Tom Budge, Morfydd Clark, Ismael Cruz Córdova, Ema Horvath, Markella Kavenagh, Joseph Mawle, Tyroe Muhafidin, Sophia Nomvete, Megan Richards, Dylan Smith, and Charlie Vickers.

Robert Aramayo, who is set to lead the series, is most famous for portraying young Ned Stark in the Tower of Joy episode of HBO’s Lord of the Rings series. If you’re like me then the serial killer board inside your brain covered in red string is delighted by the idea of the actor who portrayed a young version of Sean Bean in one universe will now be playing an ancestor (although perhaps not in a direct line), to the character Boromir, who Bean portrayed in the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy which got him the part of Ned Stark on Game of Thrones to begin with!

Showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay had this to say:

After undertaking an extensive global search, we are delighted finally to reveal the first group of brilliant performers who will take part in Amazon’s ‘The Lord of the Rings’ series. These exceptionally talented women and men are more than just our actors: they are the newest members of an ever-expanding creative family that is now working tirelessly to bring Middle-earth to life anew for fans and audiences worldwide.

Almost nothing is known about the Lord of the Rings series beyond its abstract setting in the Second Age of Middle-Earth with a focus on the birth of the Numenorian lords. However, the cast is definitely an exciting development – as was the announcements of the writers and production team we wrote about toward the end of 2019!

CW Gives Superman & Lois Full Order

I wrote last week about the extensive renewals the CW laid down in a post Crisis on Infinite Earths world and minutes after that another announcement from the CW hit Variety confirming what many Arrowverse fans hoped for and suspected: Superman & Lois was given a full series order.

Per Variety:

Superman and Lois” will follow the world’s most famous super hero and comic books’ most famous journalist as they deal with all the stress, pressures, and complexities that come with being working parents in today’s society. “The Flash” showrunner Todd Helbing will write and executive produce, with Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, and Geoff Johns also executive producing. Berlanti Productions will produce in association with Warner Bros. Television, where Berlanti and Helbing are currently under overall deals.

More and more it appears that genre producers like the CW, CBS All-Access, and DC Universe are promising short series runs to the shows they have in development rather than trying out series in pilots or backdoor pilots which were more traditional for the industry. It’s certainly an exciting change for fans of these characters. It’s serving to set an interesting new standard for people working in the industry moving forward.

Plus, with everything that is already known – or can be gleaned from Clark and Lois’ appearances in Crisis – it appears the “Family of Steel” arc (as it is known among DC Comics fans), might be changing in the comics, but may be preserved on the small screen!

Marvel Casts M.O.D.O.K.

Remember when Marvel Studios had a whole bunch of shows in development at Hulu post-success of Marvel’s Runaways? Yeah, me either really. I suspect many people forgot about these series in the wakes of Disney+ entering the streaming wars and entering production on their original Marvel content so speedily.

However, Marvel Studios has since issued a press release about M.O.D.O.K. and fans have found themselves delightfully surprised!

Per the press release:

In “Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K.,” the megalomaniacal supervillain M.O.D.O.K. (Patton Oswalt) has long pursued his dream of one day conquering the world. But after years of setbacks and failures fighting the Earth’s mightiest heroes, M.O.D.O.K. has run his evil organization A.I.M. into the ground. Ousted as A.I.M.’s leader, while also dealing with his crumbling marriage and family life, the Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing is set to confront his greatest challenge yet: a midlife crisis!

Joining Oswalt are:

Aimee Garcia (“Lucifer,” ”El Chicano,” “Dexter”) as Jodie – Jodie, M.O.D.O.K.’s wife and mother to his children, has had a late-in-life awakening — excited to pursue her mommy-blog turned lifestyle-brand empire and discover who she is as an independent woman in her forties. There are just too many things to do in this world and not enough time to waste being held back by negativity. And unfortunately for M.O.D.O.K., the thing weighing her down the most… is him.

Ben Schwartz (“Parks and Recreation,” “House of Lies”) as Lou – To be honest, M.O.D.O.K. doesn’t really “get” his twelve-year-old son Lou. Not athletic enough to be a jock. Not smart enough to be a nerd. Lou is… well, Lou — a kid who clearly marches to the beat of his own drum. Lou’s lack of friends, ambition and hygiene is a constant worry for M.O.D.O.K., who often projects his own insecurities onto his overly confident son.

Melissa Fumero (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”) as Melissa – Even with her father’s “features,” seventeen-year-old Melissa has risen the ranks to become the Heathers-like queen bee of her school and a star in the world of teen figure skating. Every popular kid either wants to date her or avoid her terrifying wrath. But for all of her success, Melissa secretly yearns for her father’s approval.

Wendi McLendon-Covey (“The Goldbergs,” “Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar”) as Monica Rappaccini –Monica is a brilliant mad-scientist at A.I.M. and M.O.D.O.K.’s rival at work. Clearly more competent and qualified than M.O.D.O.K., Monica believes she should be running the organization. After GRUMBL acquires A.I.M., Monica relishes in M.O.D.O.K.’s suffering until the new management begins to infringe on her ungodly experiments. With a common enemy in Austin, M.O.D.O.K. and Monica are finally able to put aside their differences and work together… when they aren’t constantly betraying each other.

Beck Bennet (“Saturday Night Live,” “Bill & Ted Face The Music”) as Austin Van Der Sleet – After M.O.D.O.K.’s evil organization A.I.M. is run into the ground, he’s forced to sell it to silicon valley tech-giant GRUMBL. GRUMBL sends slick, twenty-something Austin as a “post-merger-integration-consultant” and M.O.D.O.K.’s new boss. Though M.O.D.O.K. wishes he could just zap Austin to the Negative Zone, M.O.D.O.K. must find new solutions to confront Austin’s corporate jargon-speak and frequent mandatory HR meetings, if he’s ever going to reclaim A.I.M. from Austin’s grip.

Jon Daly (“The Kroll Show,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm”) as Super Adaptoid – A snarky android with ambitions to live, feel and create, but is instead forced to spend his days massaging the hoverchair sores on his creator M.O.D.O.K.’s scalp. Although the Adaptoid dreams of overwriting his programming and turning on M.O.D.O.K., there is also a begrudging friendship between these two.

Sam Richardson (“Veep,” “Ghost Draft”) as Gary – Gary is a henchman or “beekeeper” at A.I.M. who is fiercely loyal to his boss M.O.D.O.K., even if M.O.D.O.K. struggles to remember his name. As M.O.D.O.K. continues to get demoted within his own organization, Gary is there by his side, always offering his help and unshakeable optimism whether M.O.D.O.K. wants it or not.

The all-star lineup is definitely impressive for a set of characters who are largely obscure or completely original for the upcoming show.

Showrunner Jordan Blum agrees, stating:

I’m blown away by our insanely talented and hilarious voice cast, who have all brought their specific kind of magic to this weird and wonderful corner of the Marvel Universe.

Now that the cast is announced, how pumped are you for M.O.D.O.K.? Let us know in the comments section below.

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About Author

Ashley Victoria Robinson is a Canadian girl by day and Robin by night. She lives in Los Angeles now and stars as Ensign Williams in THE RED SHIRT DIARIES, co-hosts the GEEK HISTORY LESSON podcast and writes for Top Cow.

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