Giancarlo Esposito has recently confirmed being in talks with Marvel Studios to join the big leagues as Professor Charles Xavier in the upcoming X-Men projects. The actor has climbed up the rungs in the industry following a rather dreary career before being cast as the iconic Gus Fring in AMC’s Breaking Bad and its prequel spin-off Better Call Saul.
Following his spectacular performance as the fan acclaimed character, he soon followed up with a genre switch in the Amazon Prime Original series, The Boys, and Disney+ series, The Mandalorian. Both series witness Esposito in a remarkable capacity that finds him stealing the spotlight on-screen with his off-handed charm and cold (bordering on sociopathic) characterization.
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Giancarlo Esposito’s X-Men Role in Marvel Sparks Debate
The Danish-born American actor has not shied away from striving for higher reaches within the industry. Having gathered enough experience through time spent on The Boys as the cold and calculating boss of the pharmaceutical/superhero management industry, Vought, Esposito is now primed to play yet another head of a superhero megacorp as Professor X.
However, given his usual array of roles fall under a similar persona — that of a cruel, lone wolf, or cold character — it is unusual for him to now portray the powerful telepath mutant. Debates have now stormed on due to a better match between his usual menacing aura and that of Magneto’s personality.
Why Esposito Would Be Better Fitted to Play Magneto
The Civil Rights Movement that raged in the US from 1954 to 1968 birthed two of the greatest and most infamous activists that the world had seen — Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. The two were outspoken revolutionaries seeking to change the perceptions of the people through their ideologies. But where MLK preached non-violence, peace, and messages of love, the latter posed an antithesis to the other’s ideology by urging his fellow African-Americans to protect themselves against the predominant white aggression “by any means necessary”.
This will strike a chord with those familiar with the allegiance/rivalry between Professor X and the anti-hero Magneto since the two comic characters were born at the height of the Civil War in the September 1963 issue of The X-Men #1. The ideologies that shape their personalities are largely derivative of that of MLK and Malcolm X — both fighting for a common cause, i.e. the preservation of their people, and yet upholding opposing ideologies.
If Giancarlo Esposito does land a role in the mutant universe, it would make sense for him to play the anti-heroic Magneto, and considering the actor’s current age, Marvel could play into the character’s origin arc being that from the Civil war era instead of the originally established Holocaust, thus making it more historically accurate.