Tessa Thompson Says Increased Diversity Is A ‘Pretty Big Deal’ In Marvel’s Phase 4

by : Lucy Connolly on : 06 Jul 2020 14:23

Tessa Thompson has said increased diversity in Marvel’s Phase 4 is a ‘pretty big deal’, and she’s looking forward to be able to ‘push the bounds’ of diversity on screen.

The actor, who plays the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first ever openly LGBTQ+ hero Valkyrie, said she’s ‘really excited’ about what’s to come following promises from Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige that the studio would strive to make the MCU more inclusive.


Thompson spoke about the move to include more representation in MCU’s next films during a conversation with Ramy Youssef as part of Variety’s Actors on Actors series, explaining why it was so important to do so.

ValkyrieMarvel Studios

Thompson said:

The truth is these movies travel globally in such huge ways, and if you can represent people that are of colour, if you can represent people with disabilities, if you can represent the LGBTQIA community inside of these films, it’s a pretty big deal.

You know, because there’s millions and millions of people, particularly young people, that show up to the cinema. And I think if you can show them something that looks like them, they feel valued.

Particularly inside of these narratives of the comic books, that’s what it’s all about. It’s that our differences make us special… I think it’s really important for everybody, but for young people especially, to be able to show up to those movies and see projections of themselves.

tessa thompson diversity marvelVariety/YouTube

The actor went on to say it’s ‘been a real joy’ to be a part of this change, adding: ‘In this next phase of Marvel, we’re really talking about what representation looks like in those spaces.’

She also spoke about how improving representation would impact Valkyrie in any upcoming Marvel films, hinting that the character’s sexuality could be explored further.

‘I’m really excited that we’re able to continue to push the bounds of that and that I’m able to do that with Valkyrie because there’s so many cool queer characters in the comic books and they should have a place on-screen,’ she explained.

ValkyrieMarvel Studios

Thompson’s comments come after Kevin Feige confirmed making the MCU more inclusive and diverse had ‘always’ been the plan and would continue to be so, saying they ‘intend to keep showcasing heroes from the comics that represent the world that goes to see our movies’.

Valkyrie’s character will be explored further in the upcoming Thor: Love and Thunder, after director Taika Waititi earlier this year expressed his desire to give Valkyrie a queer storyline in the film.

Thompson previously revealed her character will seek out a queen to rule alongside her in New Asgard.


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Lucy Connolly

A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).

Topics: Film and TV, Diversity, Film, Marvel, Now, thor


  1. Variety/YouTube

    Tessa Thompson & Ramy Youssef - Actors on Actors - Full Conversation