Lashana Lynch On Playing Captain Marvel In Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness: ‘It Blew My Mind’ – Exclusive

Maria Rambeau – Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness

by Ben Travis |
Published on

The last few years have been huge for Lashana Lynch. Soon to be seen kicking ass in Gina Prince-Bythewood’s historical war epic The Woman King, she previously blasted into the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Carol Danvers’ best friend Maria Rambeau in Captain Marvel, before becoming 007 (her numbered-agent Nomi working alongside Daniel Craig’s James Bond) in No Time To Die. Then, earlier this year, she popped back up in the MCU for a cameo role in one of the most secretive scenes of the year: Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness’ alt-universe Illuminati sequence. And this time, she wasn’t just Maria Rambeau: she was Maria Rambeau as Captain Marvel, imbued with all the cosmic abilities associated with that mantle.

It was the kind of return Lynch never saw coming. “It was a wild one,” she tells Empire in a major new career-spanning interview, in the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever issue. Part of the surprise? She’d already learned about Maria Rambeau dying off-screen in the wake of the events of Captain Marvel. “Kevin Feige had messaged me, letting me know about Maria’s demise. [Characters] spoke of it in WandaVision, which I’m glad that they did because at least that’s good context.” The multiverse, though, brings all kinds of narrative possibilities with it. “One of the producers of Captain Marvel called me and said they had this idea to bring all these new versions of characters back together and they wanted to bring Maria back,” she recalls. “I was like, ‘Great, okay, she’s gonna be an ancestor.’ ‘No, she’s gonna be Captain Marvel.’ It blew my mind.”

It didn’t even sink in when she was faced with her fellow Illuminati members. “Hayley [Atwell], Benedict [Cumberbatch], Chiwetel [Ejiofor], a group of us were on Zoom just staring at each other going, ‘What is happening?!’,” Lynch laughs. “I embraced Maria as a ‘super-mum’, having a chance to flex in this very new but already existent way. It felt like it was meant to be for her.” Even though the sequence saw Maria-as-Captain Marvel – SPOILER ALERT – brought down by a maurading Wanda, it’s an experience that has shown Lynch that death isn’t necessarily the end in the MCU. “Listen, I’ve already mentioned to Kevin about ancestors,” she says. “I was like, ‘You know in Black Panther when the dad is a panther in the tree? Maybe Maria could be by a tree somewhere!’” In the Multiverse, anything is possible.

Empire – November 2022 cover

Read Empire’s full Lashana Lynch interview – with a brand new exclusive photo shoot by Zoë McConnell – in the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever issue, on sale Thursday 29 September and available to order online here. The Woman King comes to UK cinemas from 4 October.

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