Creator Jessica Gao reveals that her She-Hulk: Attorney at Law pitch originally included the upcoming Captain America 4 villain, The Leader.
Though audiences are still reeling from the confirmation of his upcoming return, it appears Captain America 4 villain The Leader was almost seen sooner with She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. The latest Marvel Cinematic Universe series featured a wide array of new and returning faces to the comic book franchise, including Tatiana Maslany’s titular heroine, Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk, Charlie Cox’s Daredevil, Benedict Wong’s Wong and Tim Roth’s Emil Blonsky. She-Hulk: Attorney at Law revolves around Jennifer Walters as she gains the Hulk powers of her cousin in a car accident and quickly becomes a celebrity as a lawyer for super-humans.
Emil’s return in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law proved to be an interesting bit of character development for both the former villain and the Hulk family, forcing them to confront his troublesome past with Bruce. In the meantime, the series largely diverted from typical MCU formula by lacking any major villain for most of its run, save for Jameela Jamil’s Titania in her recurring appearances and a mysterious HulkKing, who turned out to be Jon Bass’ misogynistic billionaire Todd Phelps. While some were eager to see a proper villain to take on the titular heroine in the show, it appears She-Hulk: Attorney at Law nearly acted as a springboard for one major antagonist’s return.
While speaking with ComicBook.com to break down the show following its finale, Jessica Gao reveals She-Hulk: Attorney at Law nearly included Captain America 4 villain, The Leader. The MCU series creator admitted she couldn’t remember how the plans were ultimately scrapped for Tim Blake Nelson’s character to appear, but that her original pitch for the show included him. See what Gao shared below:
In my original pitch, I did have The Leader in there. Just as an option, as a suggestion, you know? But really, I can’t remember why [it was scrapped]. I don’t remember if it was organically taken out, because we just came up with other stuff, or if we were told no. I honestly don’t remember. But there was thought about either bringing him back or doing some version of a new version of Leader, or some relation to him. But, I mean truly, this was three years ago, and the show has evolved so much that I don’t remember what actually happened.
How The Incredible Hulk Is Becoming Canon Again
Despite featuring Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark in the film, 2008’s The Incredible Hulk is largely considered to be a forgotten chapter in the MCU, primarily for the recasting of Edward Norton with Mark Ruffalo, stemming from the former’s desire for creative control. As such, certain characters and plot threads were left by the wayside as the franchise continued to unfurl in other directions, including the set-up of Tim Blake Nelson as Hulk’s iconic archenemy The Leader. Some steps would begin to be made to better establish the MCU’s canonical ties to The Incredible Hulk in Captain America: Civil War, with William Hurt reprising his role of General Thunderbolt Ross, and continuing to play him in both Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame and Black Widow, his final turn as the character prior to his death.
While The Leader may not have ultimately appeared in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, the latest MCU series marked another major step in connecting back to The Incredible Hulk with Roth’s Abomination returning. Additionally, with Captain America: New World Order set to feature both Nelson’s The Leader and Thunderbolt Ross, albeit now played by Harrison Ford in the wake of Hurt’s death, those who enjoyed the second installment in the MCU are sure to be excited to see it finally becoming more canonical with the larger franchise. Audiences can revisit the set-up for The Leader’s arrival withThe Incredible Hulk streaming on HBO Max now.
Next: Marvel’s Thunderbolt Ross Recast Has To Mean Red Hulk Is Coming, Right?Source: ComicBook.com
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