Books & Music

Disney Introduces First Onscreen Muslim Superhero

This is big!

Disney+ announced the upcoming onscreen debut of superhero Ms. Marvel as part of a network-exclusive streaming series. Now, the world knows who will step into the title role of Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel.

Hollywood newcomer Iman Vellani will star in the limited-run series “Ms. Marvel” on Disney+.

Deadline originally broke the news in September, but during last week’s annual Investor Day call from Disney, a teaser video known as a “sizzler” was shown by Marvel Studios to make the casting official.

“The casting process was vast,” said series producer Sana Amana in the video. “When we discovered Iman, we knew that she was Kamala Khan.”

Vellani appeared to receive the big news via a Zoom call from directors and producers, who told the actress the decision to cast her was unanimous.

“I can’t comprehend this right now,” Vellani replied excitedly.

Marvel Studios posted the short sizzler on its Twitter feed:

Velanni’s role will mark the first time a Muslim superhero will appear onscreen.

The character of Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel debuted in Marvel Comics in the August 2013 “Captain Marvel #14.”  After several cameo appearances, Ms. Marvel would eventually have her own comic book series.

Khan is a Pakistani-American teenager who lives in New Jersey. Like many people her age, she struggles to fit in at home and at school. To cope with her stress, Khan immerses herself in the world of superheroes, especially Captain Marvel, with drawings, stories, and more.

But, one day, her fantasies come to life when she discovers she has superpowers of her own. That’s when the adventures of Ms. Marvel begin.

When word of Vellani’s casting went public earlier this year, actress Mindy Kaling expressed her excitement and support for the new lead actress.

And Vellani herself posted an image of a headline to Instagram on her @imanvellaniofficial page, saying, “Speechless and so excited.”

Based on the sizzle video released by Disney on Dec. 10, it looks like production is already underway for the exclusive streaming series. According to the official Marvel Studios’ website, the show will debut sometime in late 2021. Marvel also confirmed last week that Vellani will also appear as Ms. Marvel in the film “Captain Marvel 2” alongside Brie Larson, which is expected in theaters on Nov. 11, 2022.