Who Is Giancarlo Esposito in the MCU?

Giancarlo Esposito's MCU villain could be a deep cut: Prophet!

Giancarlo Esposito is joining the MCU according to the actor himself, and new information paints a picture of who he could be playing in Captain America: Brave New World. Murphy's Multiverse wrote that the Breaking Bad star is in the upcoming Marvel movie. Immediately, fans raced to try and figure out who he could be playing. While popular fancasts like Norman Osborne and Magneto still abound on social media, there's a much lower key character that could be the likely pick. Giancarlo Esposito is probably playing the Black Widow villain Prophet, and that would make a lot of sense.

For those who are unaware, Prophet is the leader of an organization called Chaos in the Marvel Comics Universe. In essence, he's a teleported who has access to information about the future. Chaos uses this advance knowledge of the future to fund causes and initiatives that help that chosen future come to pass. Prophet tries to help influence events that occur within the Marvel Universe to ensure that the mysterious entity feeding their organization information remains in power. This all tracks with what we know about the movie so far and that makes his inclusion both a surprise and logically consistent.

(Photo: Black Widow | Nathan Edmondson)

For more than a year now, we've known that Tim Blake Nelson's The Leader would be a part of Captain America: Brave New World. In the comics, the Hulk villain is the head of The Intelligencia, a group of villains looking to dominate the world using their command of information and access to power. Those goals align almost perfectly with Prophet and that of Chaos. In fact, they're an easy way to ensure that we end up right in that Multiversal War that's been teased since the beginning frames of Loki Season 1. Think of how many shadowy forces are just laying silently in the larger MCU at the moment. It makes a lot of sense, but it isn't confirmed yet!

Giancarlo Esposito Has Been Teasing An MCU Role

(Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for AMC, Marvel Studios)

A lot of Giancarlo Esposito's recent public appearances have been teasing a Marvel project. At the time, some fans believed this was a "Madame Web situation" where he singed on for a Sony Marvel movie instead of a mainline MCU project. As more information has come forward, it would seem that Marvel Studios really is his destination. Some of the specifics of his comments make way more sense after the Murphy's Multiverse piece.

During Phoenix Fan Fusion, Esposito said, "The MCU has knocked on my door and it's a role you won't predict. It will be teased and there will be a series afterwards." (Legion of Sand really helped all of us by snagging this moment on Twitter!) Clearly, Esposito's tease of joining the MCU "sooner rather than later" at CCXP was no bluff either. 

Prophet would also fit into "a role you won't predict" as well. (Even though that's what we're doing right now!) But, Captain America: Brave New World has one more massive factor that makes this casting very very likely. This week, Anthony Mackie's Marvel movie is undergoing reshoots and that means the studio has even more tinkering to do with the finished product. 

Captain America: Brave New World Stealthily Places Pieces On The Board

(Photo: Marvel Entertainment)

The Multiverse Saga has continued to roll onward, but there have been a few bumps in the road. Maybe the chief among them was Jonathan Majors' firing from Marvel Studios over domestic violence charges. Desptie the severity of the claims, a lot of fans couldn't help but wonder what would become of Kang the Conqueror. While a loud section would see the MCU ditch the character entirely, that's never quite made a ton of sense for a villain that can easily be retrofitted into another concept. (Does anyone think Secret Wars won't feature Doctor Doom or The Beyonder at this point? They'll get here.) 

Chaos as an organization paves the way for something like an evil Illuminati or The Masters of Evil to emerge. (In the comics this would be The Cabal, but who knows what it will be called. Illuminati would be this writer's bet at the time of writing.) Using these far-reaching forces to draw Earth 616 into a multiverse standoff feels inevitable. Then our heroes, including Captain America might have to make a tough call to choose between their home or the lives of millions. 

Then, when Doom or whoever is revealed as the one who's been feeding Esposito's villain the information, you get a massive flush of excitement from the audience. (It also give Marvel a way to bring back a greatest hits team of villains for the Avengers to throttle in a movie.) Think of threads like The Power Broker's mysterious business partner, Valentina Allegra de Fontaine's actual boss, and the weird She-Hulk plot thread and lingering interest in Hulk DNA. All of them could be a big bad pulling the strings to weaken this Earth to preserve (or bring back) a Sacred Timeline. Still, you should bet we'll get a formal announcement of some sort at San Diego Comic-Con in a few months.

Who do you think Esposito is playing? Catch all of our pop culture discussion at @ComicBook on social media!