For “Moon Knight”, Marvel has secured the services of Ethan Hawke. A little surprise, as the actor favors independent productions much more. Interviewed on this subject, Hawke weighs the pros and cons of the studio’s current way of working.
Ethan Hawke: a prestigious actor in the MCU
Since the launch of its cinematographic universe, Marvel has never ceased to want to attract the Hollywood elite, whether actors or directors. The integration of Ethan Hawke in one of his productions (moreover, a series) is therefore no longer very surprising. If the actor has never given up on blockbusters (we have seen him in recent years in films like The Magnificent Seven Where Valerian and the city of 1000 planets), his presence in the cast of Moon Knight is a small event in itself. Especially that within the series, the actor plays the main antagonist.
Thus, he interprets Dr. Arthur Harrow, a dangerous sect leader who worships the Egyptian goddess Ammit, nicknamed “the devourer of the dead”. Determined to bring her back to life so she can make the world a better paradise, he will then be confronted with Moon Knight who will try to prevent him from doing harm.
A more nuanced take on superhero movies
Like many other artists who prefer auteur cinema, Ethan Hawke wasn’t a big fan of Marvel movies. However, as he says in Indiewireit was following a discussion with his daughter Maya Hawke that the actor agreed to play in Moon Knight. Thus, the latter believed that he would have a more relevant critical analysis if he joined one of the MCU productions. By joining the show, his objective was therefore to be able to bring his experience as an actor accustomed to productions that leave more freedom to creative people.
Upon arrival, his analysis of the Marvel team turns out to be much more nuanced than that of Martin Scorsese, who in recent years has become the chief critic of these superhero films. So, while he says he’s no one to dictate what today’s audiences should watch, he found Marvel productions to be much more complex than one might think:
These people are extremely friendly with the actors. They may be less flexible with directors, and that’s what Scorsese and Coppola wanted to talk about. But they love actors. I think Kevin Feige did great things with Robert Downey Jr. He understood that Downey’s passion was a big part of Marvel’s success. When actors are passionate about a role, audiences get excited to watch them. Feige understands this, so they are extremely respectful to us. The best example is, for me, the performance of Oscar Isaac. It is exceptional for a production with such a giant budget.
Ethan Hawke, will he still be in the MCU?
The contracts of actors who work with Marvel Studios are very special. Indeed, given that their characters find themselves connected to several films, they must be as available to them as possible, even if it means shooting less during the year. This is why the presence of Ethan Hawke at Marvel is surprising, he who is known for his independence vis-à-vis all the projects he receives and accepts.
Long-term commitments don’t interest me. I protected myself, because I didn’t know what this was all going to be. I just wanted to know what this sandbox looked like. It’s what young people watch, so why are we going to tell them it’s not good?
While waiting to know if we will see Ethan Hawke again in the MCU, the latter will be expected in The Last Movie Starsa docuseries dedicated to Paul Newman which will be released on HBO Max on July 21.