There is another Kamala budding, not in Washington, D.C., but in Hollywood. Kamala Khan, aka Ms. Marvel, will be arriving on the big screens in the second half of 2021, Covid willing, of course.
Iman Vellani, 18-year-old Canadian actress, will star as Marvel Studios’ first onscreen Muslim hero. She will play Kamala Khan, a Pakistani-American teen based in New Jersey, in Disney+ series based on the comic-book character.
Kamala is Marvel’s newest young superhero who develops super powers — including the ability to shapeshift and extend her limbs.
This is Vellani’s first major Hollywood production. Vellani announced the news in an Instagram post on Sept. 30 writing, “Speechless and excited! Wish me luck. #msmarvel.”
Vellani, according to news reports, is such a newcomer that she doesn’t even have an IMBD profile yet. Nevertheless she gets the top billing in the highly anticipated titular live-action series that’s based on the comic book character.
Kamala Khan was co-created by Pakistani-American editor Sana Amanat, and the character also has a Pakistani background. Khan is the first Muslim character to headline her own comic book, and is also the main character in the new Marvel’s Avengers video game.
Marvel also named Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Meera Menon as directors on the series.
The casting nearly brought Pakistani-American actor Kumail Nanjiani to tears. “I just saw they cast Ms. Marvel and legit got teary eyed. Congratulations Iman Vellani! Your work is going to mean so much to so many people, myself included. I can’t wait,” he Tweeted. Nanjiani will be portraying the samurai superhero Kingo in the upcoming MCU film “Eternals.”
Ms. Marvel first appeared in 2014 as Marvel’s first Muslim character to star in her own title, and she will become Marvel Studios’ first onscreen Muslim hero.
According to distractify.com, “There have been many young actresses vying for the part of Ms. Marvel in the upcoming Disney+ series, leading fans to speculate about the official choice for Marvel’s first Muslim superhero. But instead of choosing a familiar face, the show’s creators have cast newcomer Iman Vellani.”
According to looper.com, “Kamala has only been featured in the pages of Marvel comics for less than a decade, but she has swiftly become a fan favorite, and is particularly notable as the first Muslim-American superhero to receive her own title. Debuting in the pages of Captain Marvel in 2013, Kamala is a New Jersey teenager who discovers that she contained Inhuman genes.”