Elizabeth Olsen Became ‘Frustrated’ with MCU Contract, Had to Turn Down Oscar-Nominated Roles
There is a universe where Elizabeth Olsen starred in Yorgos Lanthimos’ Cannes jury prize-winning “The Lobster,” but alas, the “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” star was already committed to Marvel.
Olsen, who has played Wanda Maximoff AKA the Scarlet Witch in MCU installments since 2014, is looking back at the alternate realities of her career, including Lanthimos’ Oscar-nominated film.
“I started to feel frustrated,” Olsen told The New York Times about being locked in to a Marvel contract. “I had this job security but I was losing these pieces that I felt were more part of my being. And the further I got away from that, the less I became considered for it.”
Olsen previously called losing out on “The Lobster” a “heartbreak,” explaining at the 2015 American Film Festival (via Variety) that she was “in a contract [for Marvel] I could not get out of. So that didn’t work out.”
Olsen made her film debut in 2011, with back-to-back Sundance premieres of “Silent House” and “Martha Marcy May Marlene.” Dubbed an immediate indie darling, Olsen went on to star in “Ingrid Goes West” and “Wind River” while she became more entrenched in the Marvel universe.
“It took me away from the physical ability to do certain jobs that I thought were more aligned with the things I enjoyed as an audience member,” Olsen said to NYT about the MCU. “And this is me being the most honest.”
However, Olsen decided to sign on to Disney+ series “WandaVision” after fulfilling her three-film Marvel contract at the end of “Avengers: Infinity War.”
“The power to choose to continue was important to me,” Olsen explained, saying the series had a new kind of “freedom” within the MCU.
“We thought what we were doing was so weird and didn’t know if we had an audience for it, so there was a freedom to it,” Olsen added. “There was no pressure, no fear. It was a really healthy experience.”
And after “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness,” which again leaves Wanda’s fate open-ended, Olsen is considering a standalone film.
“I think I would,” she said. “But it really needs to be a good story. I think these films are best when it’s not about creating content, but about having a very strong point of view — not because you need to have a three-picture plan.”
Olsen previously defended Marvel’s type of storytelling to the The Independent.
“I’m not saying we’re making indie art films, but I just think it takes away from our crew, which bugs me,” Olsen said. “From an actor’s point of view, whatever, I get it; I totally understand that there’s a different kind of performance that’s happening. But I do think throwing Marvel under the bus takes away from the hundreds of very talented crew people. That’s where I get a little feisty about that.”
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