Giancarlo Esposito Joins Marvel’s ‘Captain America: Brave New World’

Weeks after Emmy nominee Giancarlo Esposito teased that he’d be joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe “sooner than you think,” Variety can confirm that he will appear in “Captain America: Brave New World,” which hits theaters next year.

Esposito revealed he’d been cast in a Marvel project during a panel at CCXP in Brazil earlier this month. There he squashed fan speculation that he’d play Professor X in the widely expected Marvel Cinematic Universe version of “X-Men.”

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“There’s something about being original. We’ve seen different versions of Professor X,” Esposito told the crowd. “Wouldn’t you like to see me play a character in a Marvel movie who is original, and new, and fresh? So, mark my words: This will happen sooner than you think.”

Esposito’s role in “Brave New World” is being kept under wraps (though it has been described as villainous). The Marvel movie is rolling on additional photography ahead of its Feb. 14, 2025 theatrical release date.

Anthony Mackie returns as Sam Wilson, nowthe newly-minted Captain America. An action-packed first look debuted during Disney’s presentation at CinemaCon in April, where Marvel chief Kevin Feige likened the film to 2014’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” describing it as “another fast-paced, relatively grounded action thriller.” The footage features Wilson saving Harrison Ford’s Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross, now the president of the United States, from a group of brain-washed assassins.

Directed by Julius Onah, the film also stars Danny Ramirez, Shira Haas, Liv Tyler, Tim Blake Nelson and Rosa Salazar. It was originally slated for a July 26, 2024 release, but was pushed back to Valentine’s Day 2025 in a round of rescheduling after the conclusion of the SAG-AFTRA strike. Principal photography wrapped before the strike, but Marvel Studios added screenwriter Matthew Orton in December to write additional pages ahead of reshoots planned for the spring. Presumably, Esposito will play a significant part in those scenes.

The acclaimed actor is best known for delivering fierce performances in dramas like “Breaking Bad” and its prequel series “Better Call Saul,” where his turn as Gus Fring earned him three Emmy nominations. But Esposito is also a genre entertainment veteran, earning two more Emmy nods for his work as the Darskaber-wielding antagonist Moff Gideon in “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian.” He’s also played nefarious former Vought CEO Stan Edgar in “The Boys” and voiced Lex Luther in DC’s “Harley Quinn” series on Max.

Esposito will next be seen in in A24’s “MaXXXine” and Francis Ford Coppola’s “Megalopolis,” which debuted earlier this month in Cannes. He is repped by CAA, manager Josh Kesselman and Jackoway Austen Tyerman.

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