Exclusive: Namor Movie Is In Development

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A Namor solo movie starring Tenoch Huerta Mejía is in the works at Marvel.

By Nathan Kamal
| Published

SPOILERS FOR BLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVER TO FOLLOW

A movie starring Namor, the breakout character of Marvel’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is currently in the work at Disney. According to our trusted and proven sources, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige is sufficiently pleased with the audience reception to the very anticipated character and is looking to build a starring vehicle for the villain/antihero played by Tenoch Huerta Mejía. Given that introducing Namor this far into the Marvel Cinematic Universe was considered a bit of an odd choice, this seems to indicate deeper plans for the character. 

Namor was officially introduced in the 30th Marvel Cinematic Universe as the antagonist of the nation of Wakanda and the king of Talokan, a secret underwater nation, but is actually one of the oldest superhero characters in comics. He debuted in 1939 and was created by Bill Everett, being contemporaneous with the original, non-Fantastic Four Human Torch and Captain America. Since then, Namor has become a mainstay of Marvel Comics and has appeared in many animated features, though Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is his live-action debut. 

There are many directions in which the character of Namor could be presented in a solo Marvel movie, in large part because the history of the character within comics canon is so complex. Perhaps more than any other character in Marvel Comics, Namor has split the difference between a hero and a villain. He has fought with the Fantastic Four, the Avengers, and the X-Men, and at other times, fought against them and allied himself with villains like Doctor Doom. 

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever continued that characterization by making him the antagonist to Wakanda’s interests (and royal family), but dedicated to the protection and well-being of the underwater nation he leads. While the movie ended with Namor and Shuri (Letitia Wright) forming a cautious alliance and ceasing hostilities, it is also clear that he has not given up his desire to conquer the surface world in the name of Talokan. 

It would be very interesting if Namor’s solo Marvel movie were based around the idea of him attempting to take over the world, essentially making an ambiguous villain the protagonist of a film. On the other hand, it would not be at all surprising if further appearances from Namor continued to develop the nuances of the character, who is shown to be driven to fanatically protect his people by the horrors of the colonization of the New World and attempted cultural genocide. 

This version of Namor was instantly controversial, as Marvel Studios must have known he would be. While the character was originally depicted as the king of Atlantis and as white, his Marvel Cinematic Universe version is played by a Mexican actor and Atlantis has been subbed out for the Mesoamerican-themed Talokan.

Naturally, this caused an outcry from the subset of fans that are against any kind of changes to the backstories of established characters (particularly racial or cultural changes) as well as from some quarters of the Latin world. Namor has never been an easy character to define, so we will just have to wait and see what a Marvel solo movie might bring.