We’ve been theorizing quite a bit since the announcement that Vincent D’Onforio‘s return in Hawkeye as Kingpin might connect to the original Daredevil in some form or another. There are hints at elements being taken over, but also his new durability as a sign this is a more comic-accurate depiction of the character. Luckily D’Onofrio offered some insight into it in an interview with CinemaBlend
It’s the same character. Yeah, I mean, the way that we saw it on Hawkeye, or [what] I ended up believing, is that there are [as] many dots connected as we can possibly connect, and some are just impossible to connect. But I think… it’s the same as a lot of the MCU stuff that’s done, that Kevin [Feige] does, and all the incredible filmmakers, you know, they try to connect to the original stuff as much as they can. … But then there’s dots that can’t be connected. And I think we tried to do the same thing with connecting Daredevil to… or Hawkeye to Daredevil and Daredevil to Hawkeye. You know, it’s like that.Vincent D’Onofrio
He does go on to highlight that this version is quite a bit stronger, especially as we saw him rip an entire car door with his bare hands hinting at the more comic inspirations, but at its core, the character remains the same.
I mean, obviously, my character in Hawkeye is physically stronger and can take a lot more physical abuse. But my approach to him is exactly the same approach that I did on Daredevil. He is an emotional human being, he is a child and a monster simultaneously. The same things that are going on inside me when I’m playing the character, the events that I use, whether the joyful ones or sad ones or frustrating ones or angry ones, the events that I use from my life are the same ones that I used in Daredevil that I used to portray Fisk. So it’s connected, for sure. In my mind, for sure.Vincent D’Onofrio
He does go on to share his headcanon, as “he has lost the power he had in Daredevil and he wants it back.” It might explain why he isn’t working from a penthouse and that is why he wants to take back the city. It may also be the reason he’s become a bit more “hands-on” in his approach instead of relying purely on his goons. It’ll be interesting to see what the future has in store.