If you mention the name Kristen Stewart to people, most will automatically think of Bella Swan from the ‘Twilight’ franchise, which made her a world-famous actress.
But that name might also induce moans and groans of resentment from those who do not consider her to be a serious actress, let alone one worthy of inclusion in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). However, such criticism may be premature and unfair given the actress’ recent post-Twilight work.
Kristen Stewart is still young and should at least be given a chance to show her depth as an actress.
Perhaps she can contribute something to the MCU as well.
Stewart’s reputation as an actress has received criticism for her past roles in both the ‘Twilight’ films and ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ which were seen as “shallow” and “one-dimensional,” as well as the scandal from her much-publicized breakup with her ex-boyfriend and ‘Twilight’ co-star Robert Pattinson over her alleged affair with her ‘Huntsman’ director Rupert Saunders.
So, it’s easy to forget that Kristen Stewart’s first major film success was co-starring with Jodie Foster in the 2002 David Fincher thriller ‘Panic Room,’ when she was 12.
Stewart not only gave an impressive and compelling performance as the daughter of the main character whose apartment was invaded by burglars, she also managed to hold her own against Foster, a two-time Academy Award winner while earning a Young Artist award nomination.
Stewart has also had several other critically acclaimed roles in more recent films, such as her performance as Marylou, girlfriend of Dean Moriarty, in the 2012 film adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s classic beat novel ‘On The Road.’
She earned critical raves for her performances as rock star Joan Jett in the 2010 rock biopic ‘The Runaways,’ about the legendary 1970’s all-female rock band.
She was adequate as the daughter of a linguistics professor (Julianne Moore) suffering from Alzheimer’s disease in the Academy Award winning 2014 drama ‘Still Alice,’ and she excelled as an Army guard at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp who befriends one of the detainees in the 2014 drama ‘Camp X-Ray,’ which earned her a nomination for Best Actress at the Women Film Critics Circle.
While Stewart’s track record as an actress may be uneven at best, it is still too early in her career to write her off entirely.
She would not be the first actress to be easily dismissed early in her career only to go on to achieve success and critical acclaim later on as she continued to grow as an artist.
And while some Marvel fans might be repelled at the idea of Stewart playing a role in the MCU, there are perhaps a few characters which she could successfully bring to the screen should Marvel choose to hire her.
Here are a few examples of characters whose surfaces haven’t even been scratched yet.
- We can start with Jessica Drew, the original Spider-Woman and long-time member of both S.H.I.E.L.D. and The Avengers. Both attractive thin brunettes, Stewart certainly does have the look and the intensity for such a role. Plus, she’s proven that she’s more than capable of performing in action sequences.
- A second option could be Greer Grant, a.k.a. Tigra, the half-human, half-tigress super-heroine who is one of The Avengers, if Marvel ever decides to introduce her character into the MCU which is possible since Marvel has made it clear they are dedicated to introducing more characters.
- Then there is Medusa in Marvel’s upcoming ‘Inhumans’ film, as the wife of Black Bolt, leader of the Inhumans. Marvel has not yet announced any casting for the upcoming film or given a start date for production, and it is not known if there is even a completed script. But it would not be hard to imagine Stewart being one of the actresses possibly considered for the role.
- Although admittedly a long-shot, yet another role that Stewart could campaign for is that of Felicia Hardy, The Black Cat. Since the announcement that Marvel would be including Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it is possible that they may decide to include Peter Parker’s long time crime-fighting partner and love interest.
After all, how many people doubted that Anne Hathaway would be able to pull off playing Selina Kyle/Catwoman in Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Dark Knight Rises’? Yet Hathaway not only exceeded expectations, she practically stole every scene away from Christian Bale’s Batman.
While some might consider Felicia Hardy to be a mere Catwoman rip-off and others might dismiss some of these characters, any of these roles could give Stewart the chance to play a character who is both strong and seductive, and vastly different from anything she’s played before.
However, given the fact that Marvel has announced that Peter Parker will be introduced to the MCU as a teenager once again in the upcoming Captain America: Civil War movie, Peter being paired with the more adult character of Felicia Hardy seems unlikely at this point, unfortunately.
While Marvel’s long-term plans are still uncertain, there is no reason to assume that Stewart could not easily play any of these roles.
Whether or not Marvel decides to approach her is another story. It may be that Stewart will still have to do a lot of work to put her past personal and professional issues behind her in order to be taken more seriously as an actress and embraced by the Marvel fandom.
But Stewart could still surprise everyone, and should not be written off either as an actress, or as a possible Marvel character in the future.