There’s been quite some buzz circling John Boyega. In 2021 there was a rumor that the actor would be involved in the upcoming Captain Marvel sequel, and earlier this year there was speculation that he had filmed a secret role in an upcoming Marvel movie. Boyega has since spoken with Men’s Health and set the record straight. A Marvel movie is just not a priority goal for now.
“That’s not in the vision for me now. I want to do nuanced things. . . . I want to donate my services to original indie films that come with new, fresh ideas, because I know it’s real hard to top Iron Man in that universe.”
Femi Oguns, Boyega’s agent, detailed to Men’s Health about the actor’s goals in the industry. Boyega is not looking to fill his career with franchise after franchise. When he started in the industry, he had two set goals in mind…
“To disrupt the industry and also to make history, and nothing has changed. For John, it was never about trying to fit into the box. He wants to be the outline of the box.”
Facing the Industry Head On
It’s an understatement to claim that Boyega is misunderstanding the pressures of big Hollywood franchise movies. After starring in 2011’s Attack the Block, he caught the attention of J.J Abrams. A huge fan of Star Wars, Boyega jumped at the opportunity to audition for Finn in the upcoming sequel trilogy. Unfortunately, the role would end up becoming a double edged sword for the actor.
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While Finn was featured on posters, lunch boxes, and a big paycheck for Boyega; the fame also meant that racist internet trolls would be targeting him as well. People who could accept Ewoks taking down Empire war machines with sticks and spears, suddenly drew the line at a black person existing within the galaxy far far away. These similar trolls also threw attacks at his fellow crew members Daisy Ridley and Kelly Marie Tran, who had the audacity to exist in the same universe but also be women and either wield a light saber or be competent rebels.
The trolling has still gone strong, extending to actress Moses Ingram when she made her grand debut on Disney+’s Obi-Wan Kenobi miniseries. The backlash caused the official Star Wars social media pages to post support to the actress, along with posts from her fellow cast members. Executives were also reportedly transparent to Ingram about the trolls so that she would be prepared for the incoming backlash. When asked if Boyega received similar warnings about the toxic sides of the fandom, the actor responded as such.
“Hell no, I’m the one that brought this to the freaking forefront.”
Boyega has since been equally transparent about his emotional journey working with Star Wars. Men’s Health reports that he was “blindsided by the racist vitriol hurled at him, and at times it made him question if he even wanted to be part of the sci-fi juggernaut”. Since then, he’s been outspoken over the treatment his character was given throughout the trilogy, voicing disappointment on the character’s lack of development and stigmatization.
After facing such treatment from Star Wars, it’s fair to see Boyega wanting to step into less mega million roles. Currently, the actor has three films set for release later this year, Breaking, The Woman King, and They Cloned Tyrone. While Boyega may feel disappointment over his time as Finn, it’s comforting to know that the character still has his fans, and that the rough times spent with Star Wars opened up new doors for him as an actor. Maybe one day he’ll step into the MCU, but for now he’s happy where he is.