This week, Jonathan Majors was found guilty on one count of reckless assault in the third degree and one count of harassment. Following his conviction, Majors has been dropped by the major studio he’d been in partnership with: Marvel. The actor had been positioned in an overarching role as Kang the Conqueror, the villain of Marvel’s latest saga, until he was arrested on charges of assault in March. Now that Majors’ two-week trial has delivered a conclusive verdict, Marvel seems to be moving away from any mention of Kang or his variants for future projects.
Per Deadline, Marvel will not be moving forward with Majors in the MCU. The studio cut ties with the actor following his indictment in court, and are already retooling the films he was set to appear in. Majors last appeared in Disney+ series Loki, and was set to serve as the main antagonist in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty. THR reports that the title of the film has since been changed to Avengers 5, signaling a complete pivot from Majors’ role in the MCU.
Prior to the retooling — and even prior to Majors’ firing — fans assumed that Marvel would simply recast the role of Kang. It seemed like the cleanest solution, given all the time that the studio had put into building Kang up as the franchise’s next villain. But as allegations against Majors continued to pile up, insiders began to debunk assumptions that Marvel needed Kang at all.
The second season of Loki drove that point home better than any rumor ever could: while two Kang variants appeared in the series, Loki’s series finale pivots away from Kang altogether. Tom Hiddleston’s God of Mischief is now the lord of the multiverse, while Kang offshoots like Victor Timely are being monitored by the Time Variance Authority. There’s certainly room for Kang to return (especially since Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania teased the Council of Kangs) but the threat he once posed to the multiverse is, for now, effectively moot. Another Marvel character could easily take his place as the next Big Bad — and with Marvel going back to the drawing board for Avengers 5, that seems to be the new plan.
Avengers 5 is still relatively early in production, which gives Marvel the chance to pivot in earnest. Loki scribe Michael Waldron recently boarded the project, taking over for Jeff Loveness (Quantumania). Waldron will also pen the sixth Avengers movie, currently titled Secret Wars, which suggests some connective tissue. Marvel still needs to find its new Thanos, one that can carry both Avengers 5 and Secret Wars — but there are options. With Fantastic Four preceding both Avengers films, Doctor Doom is probably the safest bet.
Either way, all eyes are currently on Marvel. The studio made a wise (albeit delayed) choice to cut ties with Majors altogether, but its issues with Kang aren’t completely solved just yet.