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5 Marvel Movies for ‘Anchorman’s’ Adam McKay


Adam McKay recently revealed in an interview with Crave Online that his involvement with Marvel Studios might entail more than just doing an Ant-Man rewrite. The Anchorman writer/director/producer teamed up with Ant-Man star Paul Rudd to cook up a new draft of the 2015 super hero movie; McKay even flirted with sitting in the director’s chair before Peyton Reed filled the void left by departing helmer Edgar Wright.

After Rewriting ‘Ant-Man,’ Adam McKay is ‘Kicking Around’ More Ideas With Marvel

But could the man behind such oddball comedy movies like Talladega Nights and Step Brothers really direct a hard-hitting action movie for Marvel? The pairing may seem a bit odd at first, until you remember that Captain America: The Winter Soldier was directed by Joe and Anthony Russo — two guys previously best known for directing dozens of episodes of Arrested Development and Community. The timing and precision needed to make jokes land on film apparently helps jokes land too; McKay doesn’t seem like such a weird choice for a Phase Three film now, does he? If McKay signs up for more Marvel action, here are the movies we want to see him make.



If the Marvel Cinematic Universe needs an oafish roustabout like Anchorman’s Ron Burgundy, then Hercules is the guy to go to. Marvel’s take on the demigod Hercules is a hero that takes carousing and imbibing as seriously as he does saving the day. While he’s definitely not as big of an egomaniac as Burgundy (and he probably can’t play jazz flute as well as the Will Ferrell character), any live-action adaptation of Hercules needs to have unearned gravitas and over the top confidence — and that film needs big gags to put the leading man in its place. Of course, McKay would need a Hercules that could alternate between being jovial and intimidating; if Guardians of the Galaxy’s Chris Pratt give his Parks and Recreation co-star Nick Offerman some tips on how to develop abs on abs on abs, there’s your Hercules. And really, any movie starring Ron Swanson in a green mini skirt needs a comedy master like Adam McKay behind the camera.



Marvel proved that they can take a team of no-name aliens and rocket them to superstardom with Guardians of the Galaxy. Now it’s time for them to do that with a group of quasi-reformed ex-super villains. The original Thunderbolts concept by Kurt Busiek and Mark Bagley, which saw the Masters of Evil undergo a heroic makeover to act out Baron Zemo’s master plan, was pretty light on the comedy. The more recent run by Jeff Parker, Kev Walker and Declan Shalvey featured the exact right amount of one-liners, odd interactions and inept camaraderie that McKay proved he can handle in both Anchorman films. The snarky Moonstone, goofy Boomerang, earnest Songbird, creepy Ghost and devilish Satana would all come alive under McKay’s direction, as they all try to outsmart and one-up each other while begrudgingly going on government-backed missions. With Thunderbolts, McKay would get to put the big action skills he honed on The Other Guys to work for Marvel.



NBC’s McKay-produced sitcom Bad Judge might be getting less than favorable reviews, but it proves that the writer/director has an interest in legal procedurals — and it means that he will have learned some lessons should he decide to bring Marvel’s premier ass-kicking and quip-spouting lawyer She-Hulk to life. As evidenced by the witty writing of She-Hulk writers John Byrne, Dan Slott, Peter David and Charles Soule, Jennifer Walters needs a creator that can pack a script with equal parts one-liners and punches. McKay also showed with the script that he co-wrote for The Other Guys that he can turn real world issues — in that case the criminal acts perpetrated by big banks during the financial crisis — and use them as a basis for an action-packed and hilarious movie. That type of social commentary would fit right in with She-Hulk’s life as a lawyer, and McKay would get to call out even more real world evils if he pitched “She-Hulk” as a Netflix series as opposed to a feature film. Big screen or small, the Jen needs an actress that can pull off action, comedy and smarts all at once. There is no one better suited for the role than six-foot-tall comedian and action enthusiast Aisha Tyler.

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If Marvel really wants to let Adam McKay loose in all of his non-sequitur-filled absurdist glory, then they have to give him control of Nextwave, the modern day satirical masterpiece by Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen. Every adventure this team went on, whether they were fighting a giant dragon in big purple shorts or the Broccoli Men, was used to lovingly and bitingly skewer the Marvel Comics Universe. Unlike solo heroes such as Ant-Man and Doctor Strange, and even teams like the Guardians of the Galaxy, the team featured in Nextwave only have twelve issues of story to their name. They lack the decades and stacks of back issues that sometimes make adaptations difficult; McKay could cram in a lot of Nextwave’s nonsense into one film and still have room left over for oddball detours — you know, like the entire shark subplot in Anchorman 2. Nextwave also has a few characters that Marvel fans have been clamoring to get on the big screen, namely Monica “Everyone Keeps Stealing My Codenames” Rambeau. It should go without saying that Sleepy Hollow’s Nicole Beharie would destroy as Captain Marvel/Photon/Pulsar/Spectrum.



Of all the big screen Avengers, Hawkeye is the one that has had the least amount of screen time. Clint’s also had zero live-action appearances since Matt Fraction and David Aja reinvented the character to wild success in their offbeat and award-winning Hawkeye ongoing. Fans love that series and they would probably really love to see a bit of it injected into Jeremy Renner’s version of the archer. McKay could make his Marvel directorial debut handling the solo debut of one of the core Avengers, which would be a big high profile gig fitting with the seasoned director’s lengthy resume. Fraction and Aja’s take on Clint Barton included a lot of snappy dialogue, self-deprecating humor and meme-worthy moments — all things that McKay has proven himself a master of. Just imagine how GIFable a scene of Jeremy Renner re-enacting the now infamous “Hawk block” would be. A McKay-directed Hawkeye would give the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s version of the character the dark wit he so desperately needs — and he should definitely get it in his own solo film, which should only come out after Black Widow gets one first.


  • Katja

    It would be great to see Nextwave or She-Hulk on the big screen, especially She-Hulk.

    If there’s a Hawkeye movie, I want it to be the good Mark Gruenwald one, not that stupid thing Fraction’s churning out. It’s bad enough reading it, let alone the second hand embarrassment I’d get from watching some poor actors with actual skill having to repeat the stupidity contained within those pages. “Aw coffee” and “aw pants” would be bad enough for Renner, but God help the poor people who’d have to take on the ridiculous reptition of “bro.”

  • Jay042

    Nextwave please! Let’s get David Hasselhoff to be Dirk Anger.

  • Steven

    It’s a shame Marvel doesn’t have the rights to Angel or Ice Man. Adam could do a fun Champions, which would allow for a weird street-based team that isn’t in NYC. Plus, it would be fun to see Hercules added without him being an analog of Thor. Black Widow would lend the existing weight. And Ghost Rider is underused (so long as he’s not Nick Cage again)

  • ChurchTucker

    Bro. Hawkguy could be done for stupid cheap. It’d be a license to print money.

  • Lyle

    I heard that Aubrey Plaza wants to play She-Hulk, I think she could be fun in the role.

  • out_of_exile

    Fraction/Aja’s take on Hawkeye (& kate bishop) would be great to see on the big screen. But jeremy renner doesn’t have the charm or charisma to pull it off. If only josh holloway had been cast as Hawkguy, man… that wouldve been something.

  • Don’t Hate On SG!!

    Man you’re a troll and an idiot. Have fun never enjoying things that are fun.

  • Hypestyles

    Nextwave? Neat. But they also need to have hillbilly Meltdown in the mix.

  • Katja

    I enjoy fun things that are well written, not cheap recycled stories that were done better by other writers and without ruining characters.

  • out_of_exile

    Please do elaborate on those accusations.

  • Shaun Martineau

    Alpha Flight.

    He’d kill it on that.

  • enjia

    He would make a fantastic she-hulk, get to it marvel

  • lewis4510

    Agents of Atlas.

  • Mike James

    Even if its not the full Fraction/Aja take on Hawkeye, Marvel absolutely needs to inject some more humor into the character, solo film or not.
    I know we’ve really only seen Clint mind controlled for 90% of his screen time thus far, but Renner (or the directors) are playing Hawkeye way to straight. He’s always been a smartass ready to throw quips at Cap, and that characterization has yet to be on screen.
    I actually think Renner could pull off the humor, we’ve just never seen him in that kind of role.

  • ggny

    Would be interesting if they did a Thunderbolts to counter DC Suicide Squad

  • NateDizzy

    Agree with the “Nextwave please” sentiment, but I’d like David Hasselhoff kept far away from the MCU. I don’t care how good he is at playing drunk people.

    Btw, are you german? Those are the only folks who I can think of that would suggest The Hoff for anything.

  • hectoruno

    Only problem with that would be people saying that it was a ripoff of Suicide Squad when Thunderbolts while similar is better done.

  • hectoruno

    Why is Fox not making the Starjammers after GOTG blew it out of the park?

  • hectoruno

    The Rock’s last movie should have been done by Marvel with an ending of Herc living till the modern age.

  • pDUB

    I’d much prefer a Black Widow/Hawkeye team-up movie, all full of non-super powered, spy-filled goodness. With a lot of flashback to awful sh*t they’ve done in the past before SHIELD

  • J. Alan

    Black Widow and Hawkeye both need movies.
    But I would be okay with a Hawkeye film before Widow’s if it heavily featured Kate Bishop. (Widow still needs a movie though!)

  • Guest

    Hawkeye should be a series on Netflix or a series of one-offs/shorts that can play either before Marvel movies or on Blu-Ray.

    “Black Widow: What Happened in Budapest” should be a real movie with Hawkeye as a supporting player.

  • J. C.

    Indeed. I suggest a story that centers around the Budapest incident (mentioned by BW in Avengers) coming back to bite them on the backside. BW’s and HE’s backstories could also be filled in via dialogue and flashbacks. And if the story could be connected to the return of the Red Skull… *HAPPY DANCE* ;-)

  • Jay042

    Hasselhoff starred in that “Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD” TV movie back in the 90’s. Since Dirk Anger is a Fury parody, I thought it would be amusing.

  • Nate

    Kerry Washington
    Emily Blunt
    Bill Hader
    Amber Heard
    Johnny Knoxville
    And Mel Gibson as Dirk Anger.


  • percane

    i don’t think they’ll add hercules to the MCU because he’s too redundant with thor, but a buddy picture or road picture with him and amadeus cho would be awesome

  • theresa951

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  • fuck

    Why don’t we see how his first and only Marvel movie is first before we go recommending others to him?

  • Chillzone

    She-hurk would be a good way to get round Universal studios owning the distribution rights to a solo hulk movie.

    Just call Hulk 2, sheHULK, make it a film largely about the Hulk and have she hulks origin story in there somewhere.

  • Jeff

    Maybe Fox owns the charecters, but Marvel own the races they belong to?

  • dw

    The idea’s funny, but someone like Carell, Ferrell or Rudd would actually be able to pull it off.

  • Dave

    James Gunn has shown an interest in doing the Thunderbolts after GotG and I think that he would do a great job. Hercules and Ares both seem to become quite prominent in the comics after Civil War, which is rumoured to be set up in CA3, so laying the groundwork sometime over the next few years would fit in with Marvel’s MO so far. Probably a year or so after Thor 3.

    I think She-Hulk will be introduced in AoS or the Netflix series, hopefully before the Civil War arc is played out so that she can help Speedball through his post-Stamford issues.

    I am also hoping that the do a Runaways film, though not sure Adam McKay would be the greatest choice for that. Nextwave sounds like something that they would best keep for post-2017.

  • Dave

    James Gunn stated before GotG came out that he wanted to do Thunderbolts – to that Kevin Feige replied “If Guardians does well, you can do whatever you want”.

  • Statham

    Nextwave wouldn’t happen. You need Tabby in that line-up and you wouldn’t be able to use her because she’s part of the FOX movie deal.

  • Statham

    Sounds like you just read excerpts on Tumblr or Scans Daily and haven’t read the book at all.

  • Statham

    Garbage-Paris-Hilton-Hillbilly-awesome-trash Tabby is the best Tabby. Saving the day through lack of a brain.

  • Statham

    I’d imagine FOX have the rights to all the characters, but the races are probably a grey area just like, say, Pietro and Wanda. FOX would probably only get full rights to say, the Brood and the Shi’ar. But it’s super-confusing. We know Marvel are making a push to use the Inhumans more instead of mutants, which is weird since the Inhumans were introduced in FF, that being a FOX film property.

  • Statham

    I’d rather they just recast Hawkeye or dump him. They seem to have somehow cast him in the vein of Daniel Craig’s James Bond for the MCU, and while Renner is great actor, there’s not really much interesting about his Hawkeye at all yet.

  • Rebecca Martin

    Nicole Beharie for Monica, Karen Gillan as Elsa, Kristen Bell as Tabby, Jake Gyllenhaal as Aaron, and Zack Galifianakis as the Captain.

    OK, casted for you. Now get to work on it!

  • Wolf0PHL

    What’s wrong with you? It will be Ant-Man 2

  • Katja

    Hawkeye works with a female character who is better than him until the plot needs her to be weak? Gruenwald and he didn’t stretch it out over so many issues.

    Hawkeye deafened? Gruenwald again and while Fraction mocked his way of doing it it was still better than somebody jamming arrows in his ears.

    Works with exes? McCann and done with none of the sexism.

    The stupid “slutty Hawkeye” trash? It’s like Chuck Austen’s back but with worse dialog.

    The art’s nice (if a bit limited when it comes to drawing faces but Aja’s aware of it and jokes about it) but the writing is recycled garbage.

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  • Eno Har

    I think they could all work well except for Nextwave. The characters in Nextwave might need a bit more set up as there from very varied backgrounds unlike the Guardians who inhabit the same part of the universe. She Hulk would be perfect. Legal, comedy dram with a superhero twist. Ally Mcbeal with powers.

  • The Dread Pirate Steve #812

    I gave up on Hawkeye before Aja and Fraction did. Clint as a moron was funny but started spilling into other titles where Hawkeye has never been shown to be that incompetent. And the Pizza Dog issue was a clever idea but not really a story and what I skimmed of the sign language issue was that to the nth degree. Kate-eye in LA becoming a moron was even worse. The series looked good mostly but that’s all I can say for it…

  • The Dread Pirate Steve #812

    Call them red Raven and Jack frost…

  • The Dread Pirate Steve #812

    All T-Bolts > current Suicide Squad but Ostrander Suicide Squad > most team books through all of time…

  • lmchew

    Two words: Squirrel Girl

  • notfromvenus

    Hah, that’s a good point. It’d be a great TV show/miniseries, I think, but I dunno if they could get Renner to do that.

  • notfromvenus

    Hmm, you might be right. I’d love to see a Hawkeye movie or show but yeah, I can’t quite see Renner doing the role in a lighthearted or funny way.

  • notfromvenus

    If I recall, in Ultimates he was really serious all the time (and was married with kids, what), so they might be channeling that.

  • Oerwinde

    I think Fox owns the rights to Tabby. And Nextwave wouldn’t be Nextwave without Tabby.