While word of a slowdown of the big Marvel Studios machine continues to spread, the company continues to prep several projects for production over the next several months. Among them is the streaming series Wonder Man, created and overseen by Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Avengers: The Kang Dynasty director Destin Daniel Cretton.
The show has been on a bit of a fast track since being revealed in a trade report last June; in fact, despite not being part of either of Marvel Studios’ big Summer con presentations (SDCC and D23), Wonder Man is tentatively set to begin principal photography in late March or early April. As such, the series has made quite a bit of news lately as the cast begins to shape up and it’s in the news again now as insider Daniel RPK has unveiled a potential logline for the project
Wonder Man has been described as a Hollywood satire and the new information from RPK does seem to fall in line with that.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is set to bring Simon Williams, aka Wonder Man, to life and will share the screen with Ben Kingsley who will reprise the role of Trevor Slattery (likely the other struggling actor) in the project. If Slattery is the other struggling actor, it calls into question just where on the MCU timeline it will fall. When last seen, Slattery seemed to have chosen to stay in Ta Lo with fuzzy bestie Morris after having spent the better part of a decade either in prison or as a prisoner of Wenwu after portraying the Mandarin at the behest of Aldrich Killian. However, before taking that job, Slattery was indeed a struggling actor doing things…no two ways about it…in the street that a man shouldn’t do.
Could part of Wonder Man be set during the Infinity Saga? There’s no reason it couldn’t be and it actually lines up with part of Williams’ villain origin story. In the comics, Simon’s father, Sanford, developed a munitions factory named Williams Innovations. After Sanford’s death, Simon ran the company into the ground as competitors like Stark Industries took its business. Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes put an interesting spin on that part of the story by having Tony Stark buy the company much to the disgust of Simon. In either version, the downfall of Williams Innovations drove Simon down the road toward becoming a super-powered villain. This could easily be adapted to the MCU without Robert Downey Jr. needing to appear; on the other hand, Marvel Studios could choose to skip this part of Simon’s story entirely and set it entirely in the present day.
Whatever the case, MCU fans will have at least a couple of years to wait before they’ll find out. With Marvel Studios looking to spread out their streaming series a bit more, Wonder Man likely won’t hit Disney Plus until early 2025.