Mindy Kaling is out here breaking down barriers and her next frontier may very well be the Marvel writers’ room. During an interview alongside fellow trailblazer Emma Thompson about their own trailblazing new film Late Night, Mindy shared that she’d really like to bring the character Ms. Marvel to the big screen. She’s even talked to Marvel about it.
“The people I’ve spoken to at Marvel about it are so excited about the character and I think they’re trying to figure out what to do with it,” she told MTV News. “And I told them I would help in any way because I truly love her.
“But they seemed really interested and I think they will probably do something,” she continued. “Now that there’s like this streaming platform with them, it might be something like that, but I think they understand how much there is the excitement, you know? Riz [Ahmed], me, every Desi actor was very excited.”
.@mindykaling on the conversations she’s had with @MarvelStudios about #MsMarvel, and who she thinks she portray the Pakistani American superhero: “I feel it might need to be an unknown” pic.twitter.com/kySV3gxgec
— MTV NEWS (@MTVNEWS) June 9, 2019
Back in May 2018, British actor Riz Ahmed, who is of Pakistani descent, tweeted Marvel Studios asking if they wanted him, Mindy and Kumail Nanjiani to get working on a screenplay for Ms. Marvel. Mindy was, and still is, totally game, plus Jameela Jamil wanted in too.
Ms. Marvel is a superhero meant to be a female version of Captain Marvel (who wasn’t always female, gasp!). Some comics star Carol Danvers (who is actually Captain Marvel in the Brie Larson film) and others—the ones to which Mindy is referring—star Kamala Khan, a 16-year-old Pakistani-American Muslim from New Jersey who idolizes Danvers. Khan became the first Muslim character to headline a comic book in her 2014 debut where she took on the mantle of Ms. Marvel with similar powers to Captain Marvel.
Mindy is so excited about the (potential) project, she’s already thinking about casting. When asked who should play Kamala Khan, she said it should be an opportunity for someone new.
“You know, it might need to be an unknown,” she said. “It might have to be an unknown, wouldn’t that be exciting?”
It would be! To have a Muslim, Pakistani superhero in a blockbuster written by a group of writers (including women!) with similar backgrounds who know and understand the character’s lived experience would be groundbreaking, if extremely overdue.
After the interview came out and people presumably started blowing up her mentions in excitement at the still-hypothetical project, Mindy tweeted that she has no knowledge of any Ms. Marvel movies or TV shows in development.
Hi everyone, I love Ms. Marvel (aka Kamala Khan) and the geniuses behind her @GWillowWilson @MiniB622 @Marvel, but I have no information about any tv or film adaptation! Wish I did though, when that hits the screen it’s gonna be huge😍
— Mindy Kaling (@mindykaling) June 10, 2019
So it looks like we’ve got a little more waiting to do. But hey, this time last year, the world hadn’t seen a female-led Marvel movie since Electra and now we’ve got Captain Marvel. Progress is slow, but we just have to keep putting into the universe that we want to see more diverse representation and the box office dollars will follow.