After nearly 40 different projects, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has hired hundreds of actors to portray Marvel’s most iconic heroes and villains. Some of these actors actually got their breakthroughs through the MCU, like Chris Hemsworth or Tom Hiddleston. However, others already had great careers when they first joined this universe.
Given their prolific filmography, audiences feel like some of these actors were definitely underutilized by Marvel and Disney. Whether they may have had larger, more complex roles or because their character adaptation lacked depth and exploration, these talented actors have barely been showcased in this franchise.
10/10 Florence Pugh is usually an emotional powerhouse in her movies
Florence Pugh made her MCU debut at the start of Phase 4 as Yelena Belova, Natasha’s foster sister, with whom she shares the trauma of growing up in the Red Room. So far, Yelena has also appeared as a secondary antagonist in Hawk Eye and will be a member of the Thunderbolts.
Since his debut, Pugh has had his fair share of screen time. However, anyone who has seen other films with her knows that she can deliver an emotional range. As hilarious and interesting as her character is in the MCU, given Yelena’s disturbing upbringing, they could use Pugh to create a more complex character.
9/10 Michael Douglas is too important for a supporting role
Hank Pym first appeared portrayed by Michael Douglas in The ant Man. Later, he also played a key role in Ant-Man and the Wasp and Avengers: Endgame. For now, Douglas is set to reprise his role in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
Michael Douglas’ career has earned him several awards, including two Oscars and five Golden Globes. Given that, the MCU should give him a bigger role in the movies. So far, Hank Pym has been particularly two-dimensional, and Douglas could add more complexity to the character.
8/10 Sersi’s comedic personality would have worked better for Gemma Chan
In 2022, Gemma Chan appeared in the MCU as two different characters. First, she appeared as Minn-Erva in Captain Marvel. Later she led Eternals like Sersi. Unfortunately, neither of those two roles did Chan’s acting justice, which is a shame, considering she turned out to be a great actress, for example, in Asian Rich Boobies.
As Minn-Erva, she didn’t even get enough screen time. As Sersi, the character was completely butchered. In the comics, Sersi is an almost reformed party girl who doesn’t take her role seriously until she has to. However, in the movie, she’s just incredibly virtuous and annoying. Her role as Astrid in boobies rich asian shows that she would have made an excellent, comically accurate Sersi.
7/10 Mysterio Wasn’t As Scary As Jake Gyllenhaal Could Have Made It
Spider-Man: Far From Home pits Peter Parker against one of the most powerful members of Spider-Man’s rogues gallery, Mysterio/Quentin Beck. A former star industry employee who uses holograms to confuse his enemies. Ultimately, Mysterio reveals Spider-Man’s identity to the world out of revenge.
Jake Gyllenhaal, who portrayed the role in the film, did a great job of expressing how arrogant yet deranged Mysterio is. However, given his incredibly creepy work in Somnambulist, it could have been taken to an extra level of obscurity, but as always, the MCU shows it’s keeping its plans PG-13.
6/10 Rachel McAdams is good at making love stories
Rachel McAdams appears in the MCU as Christine Palmer, Stephen Strange’s main love interest and former medical colleague. After sharing a heartbreaking love affair with Doctor Strange, the hero encounters an alternate version in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which helps Stephen heal from this relationship.
McAdam’s role in the MCU is important enough for the hero, but it barely allows her to develop her acting skills. After years of playing the love interest in dramas like Disobedience, she could have added a lot of extra depth to the film if the script had allowed for it.
5/10 Natalie Portman and Jane Foster were wasted in the MCU
Initially just a love interest, Jane Foster went through a new development during Thor: Love and Thunder. When Mjolnir calls her, she becomes Mighty Thor. As the Goddess of Thunder, Foster sacrificed herself to stop Gorr the Butcher God. This movie is likely Natalie Potman’s last appearance in the MCU, which is very sad considering the actress and character were criminally underutilized.
In the comics, Jane Foster has a much more complicated story that really explores her battle with cancer and her sacrifice for humanity. Moreover, Portman is one of the most brilliant actresses of her generation. Portman has always shown an unparalleled skill at portraying psychological distress, so she could have given Jane the three-dimensionality that the MCU denied her.
4/10 Anthony Hopkins would have made a great antagonist
One of the strongest Asgardians, Odin is Thor’s ruthless father and ruler of Asgard. This character, who finally died in Thor: Ragnarok, has a strong influence on the personalities of his two children, Thor and Loki, as well as on the history of Asgard. Anthony Hopkins plays Odin from the MCU.
Hopkins did a great job with Odin. Unfortunately, like most supporting characters from the early phases of the MCU, Odin turned out to be largely unexplored as a character. Hopkins’ long career in film and theater, including his incredible performance as Hannibal Lecter in Thesilenceofthelambs, proves he would have made quite an antagonist if the MCU had chosen to give Odin the Jason Aaron treatment.
3/10 Linda Cardellini’s character, Retcon, disrespects her career
Linda Cardellini first appeared in the MCU as Laura Barton during Avengers: Age of Ultron. When the Avengers needed a place to hide, Clint Barton opened up their home, where Laura and their children live. The news that Barton had a family came as a surprise to the Avengers and the public, but that wasn’t the end. Hawk Eye confirmed that Barton was not your average stay-at-home mom, but was a former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent known as Agent 19.
Cardellini has been acting since 1999. She has appeared in dozens of films and series, including Emergencies, Bloodline, and Dead for me. Considering she’s a top actress, it was pretty sad that they only gave her a supporting role, but that was even more apparent when it was revealed that she was a former superhero. She would have made an exemplary member of the OG Avengers.
2/10 Angelina Jolie was lost amidst the eternal amount of characters
Eternals, by Chloe Zhao, introduced a new breed of super-powered beings to the MCU, the Eternals. Among these gods living on Earth was Thena, played by Angelina Jolie, a fearsome warrior struggling with an Alzheimer’s disease.
Thena’s story was one of the most heartbreaking moments in the MCU. Unfortunately, it was not developed enough due to the number of characters. Audiences already know that Jolie is flawless, which can be seen in the few scenes that showcase her character. Seeing her have a bigger presence in the movie would have been amazing.
1/10 Christian Bale had the potential to make a darker Gorr
Thor: Love and Thunder confronts the God of Thunder with his own unworthiness through the character of Gorr the Butcher God. Portrayed by Christian Bale, Gorr is a former cleric who lost all respect for the gods after the death of his family. For this reason, he wants to commit the ultimate deicide.
Gorr is one of Thor’s darkest villains. He’s from Jason Aaron’s “The God Butcher Saga,” which really makes Thor question his identity. Unfortunately, the film did not deliver in that sense. However, Bale’s filmography proves he can deliver an exceptional and disturbing villain. The God Butcher had the potential to be the scariest MCU character ever, but Disney didn’t capitalize on the actor’s skills.
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