18 Actors Who Want To Return To The MCU And 13 Who Don’t

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I’m (impatiently) waiting for Paul Bettany’s return.

With the exponential way the Marvel Cinematic Universe has grown over the last 10+ years, plenty of actors have gotten the opportunity to bring a character from the pages of a comic book to the silver screen.

Now, with the introduction of the multiverse, plenty of characters from pre-MCU Marvel movies — or even characters who met their demise in the MCU — could make their return.

Some actors would be happy to keep reprising their role for as long as Marvel will have them, but others are ready to move on.

Here are 13 actors who (most likely) won’t reprise their Marvel roles:


After Black Widow, Scarlett Johansson feels “like [her] work with Natasha is complete,” but she decided to step behind the camera as a producer on “another non-Black Widow related top-secret Marvel Studios project.”

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / © Marvel Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Variety, “I’ve explored many facets of her person, and feel that her choice to sacrifice her life for her best friends was one that she made actively and with resolve.”


When reports circulated that Chris Evans was in talks to reprise his role as Captain America, he denied the rumors and tweeted, “News to me.”

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He previously told The Graham Norton Show, “It was a great run and we went out on such a high note that it would be risky to revisit it, in my opinion. It was such a good experience, and I think it’s better left that way.”


During Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, a fan called in to ask Terrence Howard if he’d reprise the role of War Machine, and the actor said, “I think they could have a huge franchise off of it, but fuck ’em.”

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

He previously declined to return for Iron Man 2 because the studio wanted to reduce his salary down to an eighth of what they promised so they could pay Robert Downey Jr. more.


Dave Bautista told IGN that the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy 3 is “probably going to be the end of Drax.”

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He also told JoBlo, “If they offered me a series, I wouldn’t do it. Not a chance in hell would I do a TV series playing Drax. That is a makeup nightmare. I would be miserable.”


Hayley Atwell feels “really fulfilled” with her time as Agent Peggy Carter and thinks “they ended it beautifully with Endgame. … It feels like a fitting end to that narrative.”

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

She told the Hollywood Reporter, “I feel lucky to have played her, but she’s one aspect of my career. She’s one part that I’ve played.”


After appearing in several MCU movies and seven seasons of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as Agent Phil Coulson, Clark Gregg thinks he “had the greatest run” but doesn’t “yearn for anything.”

Abc / ©ABC/Courtesy Everett Collection

He told ComicBook.com, “Ya know, I just enjoy watching what [Marvel Studios President] Kevin [Feige] and everybody has been doing.”


Hugo Weaving “loved playing that character Red Skull” in Captain America: The First Avenger and was actually signed to a three-picture deal, but after Marvel pushed back on his contracts and offered him less money than initially promised, he turned down the offer to appear in the Avengers movies.

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

He told Time Out, “I actually found negotiating with them through my agent impossible. And I didn’t really wanna do it that much.”


In response to rumors about an Amazing Spider-Man spinoff starring Aunt May, Sally Field responded, “Aunt May spinoff? And make her the lead? What would you do with her?”

Columbia Pictures / ©Columbia Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

She told HuffPost, “She has no special powers whatsoever. She was a housewife waiting for the kids to come home. I think they did that: It was called The Donna Reed Show.”


Upset that many of his scenes as Whiplash in Iron Man 2 were cut, Mickey Rourke said, “If they want to make mindless comic book movies, then I don’t want to be a part of that.”

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He told Crave Online, “I don’t want to have to care so much and work so hard, and then fight them for intelligent reasoning, and just because they’re calling the shots.”


After her X-Men contract expired, Jennifer Lawrence didn’t plan on returning as Mystique, and she only signed on for Dark Phoenix because “when [she] was trying to talk Simon [Kinberg] into directing, he said something like, ‘If I direct it, you have to do it,’ and [she] was like, ‘Of course! Duh!’”

Photo Credit: Doane Gregory / 20th Century Fox Licensing/Merchandising / Everett Collection

She told Entertainment Weekly, “It was the fan base, though, too — the other reason was for the fans.”


Zachary Levi said that playing Fandral in the Thor movies was “a dream come true” but he “didn’t really feel like The Warriors Three were used all that well” and “didn’t know [his character] was going to die [in Thor: Ragnarok], having said nothing.”

Walt Disney Co. / ©Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection

During a panel at DragonCon 2021, he said, “In hindsight, I got that journey, I died in the Marvel Universe…and then I got reborn in the DC Universe, and I can’t even tell you how unbelievably cool that is and how grateful I am for that.”


Jessica Alba had such a terrible experience on set in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer that she doubted her self-worth and skills as an actor and considered quitting the industry altogether.

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She told Elle, “I remember when I was dying in Silver Surfer. The director was like, ‘It looks too real. It looks too painful. Can you be prettier when you cry? …Don’t do that thing with your face. Just make it flat. We can CGI the tears in.’ …It all got me thinking, ‘Am I not good enough?'”


And Robert Downey Jr. said he’s “done all [he] could with [Iron Man] and can do other things now.”

Paramount / ©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

He told the Hindustan Times, “Now, being middle-aged, you start looking at the back nine and realize this is all part of the journey and things end. I am fortunate and eternally grateful to have wound up where I have.”

And now, here are 18 actors who are super open to reprising their Marvel roles:


In 2012, Edward Norton’s Hulk was replaced by Mark Ruffalo in The Avengers, but in 2019, he said that he’s open to returning to the MCU “as a baddie.”

Universal / ©Universal/Courtesy Everett Collection

He told Total Film, “Maybe I’ll write my own. I don’t know, I’m open to everything.”


Gwyneth Paltrow, who played Pepper Potts in the Iron Man and Avengers movies, told People that she would be open to returning “if it was a small part that [she] could do in like a day or two.”

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The Amazing Spider-Man actor Andrew Garfield is “definitely” open to playing Peter Parker again, but “it would have to be something very unique, very special, and of service to an audience, of service to the character.”

Kristin Callahan/Sony/Everett Collection

He told the Happy Sad Confused podcast, “I think there’s something playful and unique and odd and unexpected to be done. I’m not sure what that is, but if we could figure that out, it would be so much fun.”


Elodie Yung, who played Elektra in Netflix’s Daredevil, “would love” to reprise the role in the MCU — “especially since they’ve adjusted [her] costume.”

Netflix / ©Netflix/Courtesy Everett Collection / Everett Collection

On Fandom Spotlite’s Wizard World panel, she said, “Let me tell you, I love this character because she’s so complex and broken. She’s got a lot of villain in her, and that I can relate to, and also a lot of good. … I would love for Marvel to bring her back.”


After his experience in Black Widow, David Harbour doesn’t want to think of Red Guardian as a “one and done” role and is “down for more.”

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / © Marvel Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

He told Insider, “I have two ideas. One is seeing Red Guardian back in his prime. That’s interesting to me. But the other is going off this story, having this experience with Natasha. … When he finds out that she was on that cliff with Hawkeye and maybe the version of the story he hears is that Hawkeye pushed her off or something, it’s a moment when Red Guardian turns back to the guy he was. He now wants vengeance for her.”


Sterling K. Brown tweeted that if there’s a way for his Black Panther character, Prince N’Jobu, to return to the MCU, he “would be honored.”

Marvel / Via Disney+

He also shared an article about Marvel fans wanting him to return.


When a fan asked Chloe Bennet if the rumors that she was returning to the MCU as her Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. character, Quake, were true, she tweeted back, “I wish.”

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She told Looper, “I can never say never. I mean, Coulson’s died like 800 times. I don’t think I realized when I first auditioned for the role how much this entire entity, how much this character, how much this universe, and how much S.H.I.E.L.D. was going to be just a part of me for the rest of my life.”


Ty Simpkins, who played Harley Keener in Iron Man 3, would love to see his character return as the Young Avenger Iron Lad.

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He told IGN that he’d also be willing to return as a villain “without a doubt.”


Josh Brolin played Thanos in the MCU, but he wants to reprise the role of Cable from Deadpool 2 “sooner than later.”

Photo Credit: Courtesy Twentieth Century Fox / 20th Century Fox Licensing/Merchandising / Everett Collection

Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld told ComicBook.com, “[Brolin] is itching to be Cable again. He loved being Cable. He told me he understands how beloved his role as Thanos is, but he doesn’t look completely like Josh Brolin.”


Black Widow actor Olga Kurylenko said “it’d be really cool” to play Taskmaster again because “there’s so much background story…it could be developed.”

Marvel / Via Disney+

She told Esquire, “Imagine I’d say, ‘No, I wouldn’t.’ Would that be weird? Would you even believe me? Of course I would.”


Even though her Netflix show was canceled, Krysten Ritter would “absolutely just die to play Jessica [Jones] again.”

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She told Screen Rant, “I had the best time doing it and I just love her so much. I’m so proud of that character. … [She] really, really resonated with women and girls, trauma survivors. … So if there’s ever an opportunity for me to put on those boots, I will be there in a flash.”


Halle Berry is willing to “revisit” her X-Men character, Storm, in the future.

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She told ComicBook.com, “I loved all [Storm and Catwoman] and I was always grateful to get to play them and be a part of those big franchises.”


Though his character died in Captain America: Civil War, Frank Grillo is interested in doing a Crossbones TV series because he’s “never seen a character be on the screen so little and yet have such a fan following.”

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He told Forbes, “I have a great relationship with Marvel and the guys there, but why didn’t they, even if it wasn’t with me, pursue that? … I think Crossbones was on screen for something like 8 or 12 minutes, and you would think that this character was in 75 different movies the way everyday people come up to me all day and talk about Crossbones. I’m taking pictures as if I was Captain America. So, I would do it in a heartbeat.”


Lana Condor “would love to go back and do something” with her X-Men: Apocalypse character, Jubilee, because “she’s a fantastic character and now…is the perfect time to give her what she deserves.”

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She told the Wrap, “I think that now is a really good time and I would really like to do her justice because she didn’t have it five years ago.”


Cobie Smulders “would love to” play her Avengers character, Marie Hill, for the rest of her life because she loves “being a part of the world of Marvel.”

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She told the Hollywood Reporter, “Every time I get a call to work with them, I’m always excited. I have no idea what is in store for the Marvel universe and Maria’s role in it, but I’m ready.”


When Esquire asked WandaVision actor Paul Bettany if he plans to play Vision forever, he replied, “I love Vision. Yes, I’m in.”

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Elizabeth Henstridge would love to bring Agent Jemma Simmons from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. into the MCU because she loves “what Marvel stands for.”

Abc / ©ABC/Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Cinemablend, “My ultimate goal would be to direct a huge Marvel movie and a huge superhero movie, but I would also act in anything that they do, voice anything that they do.”


And finally, Chris Hemsworth said that he’s “not going into any retirement period” because “Thor is far too young for that.”

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He told Elle Man that’s he’s definitely not going to “say goodbye” to the Thor brand with Thor: Love and Thunder.

Which Marvel actor or character would you most like to see return to the MCU? Let us know in the comments!

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