Michael Shannon in the MCU? Here’s Where Fans Think He Could Fit

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has plenty of great actors in it. It has A-list stars and previously undiscovered gems who have went on to become stars after fans discovered them there. There are also plenty of roles yet to be cast in the MCU, so the potential for adding more great actors is always there. 

One actor who hasn’t been in this universe yet, but one day could be, is Michael Shannon. Several fans online even suggested him for a few potential roles. So how could Shannon potentially fit in with this extremely diverse and talented group of players? 

The amazing acting talent on display in the MCU

Michael Shannon
Michael Shannon | Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for National Board of Review

The MCU has one of the largest backlogs of characters of any franchise (in fact, only DC Comics can compete). That means there are plenty of opportunities for amazing actors to fill the roles in this box-office smashing series.

Think about some Academy Award-winning actors who have played in this sandbox: 

  • Cate Blanchett as Hela in Thor: Ragnarok
  • Jeff Bridges as Obadiah Stane in Iron Man
  • Anthony Hopkins in the Thor series
  • Brie Larson in Captain Marvel
  • Michael Douglas in Ant-Man
  • Ben Kingsley in Iron Man 3

That’s not a comprehensive list, but you get the idea. What’s also interesting is that there’s room for great performers in every kind of role: heroes, mentors, villains or something else. Blanchett portrayed a character that couldn’t be any more evil while Larson will likely be the leader of the Avengers going forward. The MCU has no shortage of possibilities of where they can stick their talent. 

That’s why fans are so excited about the possibility of Shannon entering the MCU. 

Michael Shannon’s career overview

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Shannon has become one of the most sought after names in Hollywood, often portraying twisted or otherwise “unhinged” characters, according to his IMDb profile. When asked why he was drawn to those types of characters, Shannon had an explanation: 

“It’s probably a combination of things. When people are casting things, movies and what not, they go on impressions they have of people, you know. The impressions they have of you are based on what they’ve seen you in. But I also think I find a lot of differences in the characters I’ve played, regardless of whether they may be violent or angry or act out or, you know, have lapses of control.”

Shannon has plenty of experience playing various types of roles. He drew acclaim for his performance as Prohibition agent Nelson Van Alden on the HBO show Boardwalk Empire. In recent years he’s also had standout roles in Knives Out, The Shape of Water, and the limited TV series Waco

If Shannon were to enter the MCU, it wouldn’t be his first foray into comic book movies. He also portrayed Zod, one of Superman’s greatest villains, in 2013’s Man of Steel. 

Who do fans think Michael Shannon could portray in the MCU? 

A Reddit thread discussed potential actors joining the MCU, and two fans speculated on Shannon possibly entering the fray. The two roles they surmised were rather interesting selections: Professor Xavier and Magneto. 

Both roles are against type for Shannon, but that certainly doesn’t mean he couldn’t portray them. Neither Xavier or Magneto play into the raving, sometimes maniacal approach Shannon brings to some of his heavier roles. That said, it would be great to see him try to pull either one off. Magneto would be the more logical choice, but seeing him stretch his acting chops as Professor X would also be fascinating. 

Will we see Shannon in any potential X-Men movie? It’s difficult to say. The better money is betting on Shannon entering the MCU in any kind of role at all. While he may not be tapped to play a mutant, it seems like just a matter of time before the talented actor links up with Hollywood’s mightiest franchise in one way or another.