Should the MCU Keep Reusing the Same Actors in Different Roles?
The concept of a new actor playing a character in a movie franchise or TV show has had its share of continuity problems. While some of them work well, others are overly glaring and ruin any sense of suspending disbelief. One can find this in a number of movie and TV properties, and even the MCU is not immune, particularly in reusing the same actors.
Yes, even the Marvel Cinematic Universe had a few actors playing more than one role, or a character being taken over by a different actor. In most of these cases, it was with minor characters, other than one major superhero. Sometimes it was done intentionally to give connecting strings to characters existing in two different generations.
What examples are there of the MCU reusing the same actors?
On Reddit, a fan started a thread about repeating MCU actors and whether it was a good idea for the films or major continuity mistakes. In many of the cases mentioned, logical explanations were given by Kevin Feige, and even by James Gunn.
One of the most perplexing to some fans is the same actor (Enver Gjokaj) portraying two characters in two different MCU properties. Most notably, Gjokaj played Daniel Sousa in both Agent Carter and Agents of SHIELD. He happened to also show up playing a young NYPD cop in 2012’s The Avengers.
This one might be the only not explained away by the production teams. In the case of whether it really matters, fans on Reddit think his character is too minor to gripe over. Said one Reddit user: “That Cop thing from first Avengers may or may not get resolved in currently ongoing Agents of SHIELD Season 7…”
If perhaps being a trifle, other actors being used for different roles looked like mistakes when confirmed as purely intentional.
Other actors intentionally portraying other characters
A clever touch the MCU uses is placing the same actor into playing the offspring of characters seen earlier in the timeline. Two of these examples exist, despite fans still calling them out for perhaps being inconsistent.
To give an example, the character Roger Harrison (directly from the Spider-Man comic books) is used twice in the MCU, seemingly as two different people. It turns out Roger Harrison (played by Martin Starr) plays a computer nerd in The Incredible Hulk, then Peter Parker’s school teacher in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
An incident of an actor playing a character descendant is Principal Morita from Homecoming (played by Kenneth Choi). Principal Morita is the grandson of James Morita, one of the Howling Commandos in Captain America: The First Avenger.
Yet another in this department is Peter Quill’s grandmother, Meredith, showing up in The First Avenger, played both times by Laura Haddock, per CBR. What makes this a bit interesting is James Gunn said he was only making it up, apparently making the double casting of Haddock again in Guardians of the Galaxy a pure coincidence.
Will the MCU continue to reuse the same actors for small roles?
There could be other minor characters from the past MCU timeline who show up again in future movies with the same actor playing their descendant. However, with the MCU paying closer attention to details lately, this may not happen to avoid fans obsessing over any potentials for confusion.
Being able to explain all prior repeated actors gives more credibility to the MCU films being believable. Perhaps only one slip-up is the recasting of James Rhodes, or War Machine. Played at first by Terrence Howard, then Don Cheadle, nobody seemed to carp over the obvious casting shift.
To combat any repeated actors as mistakes, the MCU has one of the best things for covering tracks: Short memories from the public.