Amid rumors circulating online that some of the “Avengers” stars aren’t exactly happy about the polarizing off-screen antics of “Captain Marvel” actress Brie Larson, a recent interview featuring Hawkeye actor Jeremy Renner seated next to Larson has thrown more fuel on the “Avengers: Civil War” fire.
In a moment pointed out by a lot of folks online, including over at Bounding Into Comics and RedState, Renner makes what some fans, particularly on the right, are characterizing as a “subtle rebuke” of the freshman Avenger’s propensity for using her Marvel role for activism. Asked by NDTV’s Rohit Khilnani about what responsibilities come with being a star for Marvel Studios films, Larson cited her responsibility to use the “platform” to produce “as much good as I can.”
“I am committed to self-improvement and I work at being the best person I can be and using this platform for as much good as I can,” Larson said. “It doesn’t mean I don’t make mistakes, but I’m very comfortable with that and allowing myself to learn from those mistakes.”
But Renner, whose body language suggested he wasn’t enthusiastic about giving the interview, didn’t agree on Larson’s “platform” assertion.
“I’m pretty accountable and responsible in my own life at any rate,” he said. “Celebrity isn’t something that I use as any sort of platform to be more responsible or accountable, I suppose. It’s certainly an absolute blessing to see the joy on kids’ faces — I don’t think there is a feeling that comes close to that.”
Video below via NDTV:
Another incident that has fueled speculation that there’s some tension among the “Avengers” team was another “Avengers: Endgame” promotional interview, this one featuring Larson and Thor actor Chris Hemsworth. Asked if he does his own stunts, Hemsworth said he didn’t do all of them, citing Tom Cruise as the classic example of the actor who goes all in on his own stunt work.
The Cruise reference appeared to trigger Larson. “No, I want to be the first me, not the next Tom Cruise, thank you very much,” she snapped.
Entertainment Tonight celebrated Larson’s comment as “the BEST clapback” at her fellow star for supposedly having “implied she did all her own stunts because she wanted to be the next Tom Cruise.”
“Do…not…come..at…her,” ET declared.
Larson has deliberately approached her new Marvel stardom as an opportunity for feminist activism. In an interview with InStyle magazine in early February, Larson described her role as Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers as her “biggest and best opportunity” for her particular brand of “activism.” “The movie was the biggest and best opportunity I could have ever asked for,” she said. “It was, like, my superpower. This could be my form of activism: doing a film that can play all over the world and be in more places than I can be physically.”
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly in late February, Larson declared that “2019 is about, really, intersectional feminism,” describing “Captain Marvel” as partly meditating on “female strength.” In talks with Marvel in the development of the film, she said, they discussed making it a “big feminist movie.”
Larson has also taken aim at white male critics, dismissing their opinions as irrelevant to her and revealing that she has taken steps to push for a more “diverse” press junket.
“About a year ago, I started paying attention to what my press days looked like and the critics reviewing movies, and noticed it appeared to be overwhelmingly white male,” Larson told Marie Claire UK‘s Keah Brown in an early February. “So, I spoke to Dr. Stacy Smith at the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, who put together a study to confirm that. Moving forward, I decided to make sure my press days were more inclusive. After speaking with you, the film critic Valerie Complex and a few other women of colour, it sounded like across the board they weren’t getting the same opportunities as others. When I talked to the facilities that weren’t providing it, they all had different excuses.”