A new report suggests that an upcoming MCU film will draw heavily from the anime genre for its inspiration.
Despite some setbacks in the release of MCU television shows, the studio has a full slate of movies scheduled for the next few years. In 2023 alone, fans can expect to see Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and The Marvels on the big screen.
Now, it appears that a new project will be influenced by the anime style, adding to the diversity of inspiration for the popular superhero franchise.
An Anime-Inspired Captain Marvel 2
Industry expert Jeff Sneider, on The Hot Mic podcast, has reported that "The Marvels," set to release in November, will draw heavy inspiration from anime.
"One thing that I’ve heard is 'The Marvels' is very anime-inspired."
No other context or information was shared — including whether that inspiration will be visual, plot-centric, or something else entirely.
In recent months, many major Hollywood features have had anime inspiration, from Turning Red and Bullet Train to Creed III and Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.
Regarding the third Creed film, star Michael B. Jordan — who also plays the MCU's Killmonger, an anime fan according to an episode of What If...? — discussed the anime inspiration with Polygon. He explained that, in anime, "there’s all these similar tones, themes, and feelings between them all ... for me, tapping into that was just a part of me:"
"When you’re watching anime, there’s all these similar tones, themes, and feelings between them all that in a sense boil down to when a hero is challenged, and they usually have a best friend or rival that’s the one challenging them in a lot of ways. There’s a lot of different ways anime iterates on these themes and feelings. So for me, tapping into that was just a part of me."
The Oscar-nominated Puss in Boots: The Last Wish was also full of anime inspiration. Director Joel Crawford told Variety that he wanted audiences to be able to "feel the imprint of anime" in the Puss in Boots sequel, adding that "it was fun to take on that inspiration and design the shape of the characters, but also the action of the world:"
"I remember [as a young child seeing] the hand-drawn explosions and the whole thing felt so epic. It was beyond anything I’ve ever experienced, I was drawing dust clouds afterward and they were characters themselves. It was fun to take on that inspiration and design the shape of the characters, but also the action of the world."
How Might Anime Inspire The Marvels?
Given that The Marvels is a live-action movie and not an animated one, visual inspiration from anime would theoretically be limited to the visual effects. However, the opening sequence of Ms. Marvel on Disney+, starring Iman Vellani's Kamala Khan, one of the featured characters in the November movie, was, in a sense, animated. Throughout the show, too, animated-style words and phrases were blended into the live-action scenery.
It is not unheard of to use animation within a live-action setting, something the film's director, Nia DaCosta, could implement. The visual inspiration Crawford recounted to Variety could be where this anime influence comes in for The Marvels.
Although The Marvels is a live-action movie, and therefore limited in its visual anime inspiration to special effects, the opening sequence of Ms. Marvel on Disney+ could offer insight into how anime influence could be incorporated.
The show features animated-style words and phrases mixed into the live-action scenery, and director Nia DaCosta may use animation within a live-action setting to incorporate anime inspiration. The potential influence of anime that was reported to Variety could be a factor in the film's visual style.
Drawing inspiration from anime, The Marvels might follow the Creed III approach and incorporate its influence into the plot. As the three main characters, Carol Danvers, Monica Rambeau, and Kamala Khan, come together or reunite, their relationships may be challenged in a way similar to the characters in Creed III.
This could potentially create compelling storylines for the highly anticipated film.
The Marvels releases in theaters on November 10.