Ethan Hawke Says His ‘The Black Phone’ Villain and His ‘Moon Knight’ Villain Are Different in 1 Key Way

Ethan Hawke is not typically known for playing villains, but he has played two so far in 2022. Ethan Hawke joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the main villain in Moon Knight and plays a more horrifying character in The Black Phone. While both of these characters are evil in their own ways, the actor says there is one key way in which these characters are different. 

Ethan Hawke plays a villain in ‘The Black Phone’ and ‘Moon Knight’

The Black Phone actor Ethan Hawke attends the premiere of Moon Knight for Disney+
Ethan Hawke | Leon Bennett/Getty Images

In The Black Phone, Hawke teams up with director Scott Derrickson, who he previously worked with on Sinister. This time, Hawke is taking on the role of the villain and is terrifying as the Grabber. He is a freaky man in a mask who kidnaps young boys and later kills them. It’s unclear what his motives are, but he revels in the sick games that he plays. 

In Moon Knight, Hawke plays Arthur Harrow. Harrow is less creepy but has an endgame that is even more destructive. He is seeking to unleash Ammit, an Egyptian God who passes judgment on others before they ever commit any crimes. Still, his plans are ultimately thwarted by Marc Spector/ Steven Grant (Oscar Isaac), who possesses the powers of the Moon Knight. 

Hawke says these two villains are different in one major way

In an interview with Screen Rant, Hawke talked about his experience with playing a villain for the first time. The Boyhood actor says that he isn’t sure how he feels about this new chapter in his career of playing villains. Ethan Hawke also adds that his Moon Knight character and his The Black Phone character are different villains in many ways. 

“I don’t know. I did The Black Phone first, and so that was my first villain role,” Hawke said. “Then after The Black Phone, they offered me the Marvel thing, and it seemed like, ‘Well, I guess maybe this is the chapter in my life.’ But Arthur Harrow is not really a villain the way The Grabber is. Arthur Harrow’s more what I would call an antagonist. He’s against the hero, but he still thinks he’s a good person. He has a certain logic that you can follow. The Grabber is just evil incarnate. He’s just some disgusting id from the universe, so that was more challenging.”

Harrow is a more well-spoken character who believes they are doing the right thing from their perspective. The Grabber is simply evil, creating horror and misery wherever he strikes. Harrow may be more powerful but he’s easier to understand than The Grabber. 

What is Ethan Hawke known for?

Hawke has been in the industry for a while but it has taken him a long time to finally play a villain. He is possibly best known for his roles in movies like Training Day, Dead Poet’s Society, Boyhood, and the Before Sunrise series. The Black Phone may be his first role as a villain but he does have a history in other movies like Sinister and The Purge

Moon Knight is streaming on Disney+ and The Black Phone arrives in theaters on June 24. 

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