These days, it seems like every few months there’s a new superhero blockbuster getting ready to explode onto the big screen, and it’s safe to say that the past few years have been very hero-heavy in the movie world. Some of the most successful comic-book flicks have come from Marvel Studios, who have worked tirelessly to churn out superhero sagas to delight and entertain us all.
So what does it take to be a superhero? Well, a lot of energy, a lot of patience, and certainly a lot of keeping quiet! The actresses who star in the Marvel Universe and other various superhero films are not only gorgeous, but they’re feisty, fit, and fantastically talented and they put a lot of hard work into the characters they’re given to portray. Being such a huge studio though, the likes of Marvel and DC have a lot of rules that its actors and actresses have to follow, and some of them are pretty intense! Here we take a look at some of the rules these female superheroes have to put up with in order to see out their roles in these films, and honestly, after reading what they have put up with, we’re sure you’ll agree they’re all 100% superwomen.
15 Endless Press Tours Are An Unavoidable Nightmare
We all love to watch interviews and fun videos of our favorite superhero stars answering in-depth questions about their roles, but if you stop and think about how many of these Q&As these actresses have to do, you would soon realize how exhausting it all must be. Most of the time, the celebs being interviewed put on a good face and indulge the interviewer with great answers and an energetic attitude. But spending hour after hour answering the same questions on repeat? It’s a wonder they don’t go crazy from boredom and fatigue! Because Marvel films are so huge, the actresses that take part in these major blockbusters are committed to these endless press tours, and sadly there’s not much they can do to get out of them.
14 Giving Up Your Likeness Is Part Of The Job
As well as having to attend endless press tours and interviews, the Marvel actresses also have to give up their likeness for promotional and marketing reasons. Obviously, in order to drum up excitement and anticipation for a movie; posters, billboards, and merchandise are made, and the actresses in the films have to allow for their pictures and likenesses to be used. Merchandise can include anything from t-shirts to coffee mugs, to dolls, and even though the actresses have to allow their image to be used for these, a lot of the time the resulting product won’t even bear any resemblance to them in real life. It often happens that when dolls are made of the actresses, their faces don’t even look anything like them! However, they still have to agree to have this stuff made and sold of them, and are contractually obligated to give up control of their appearance.
13 They Undergo Crazy Intense Training Regimes
In order to achieve a more authentic portrayal of their superhero characters, Marvel Universe actresses need to not only look the part but also play the part effectively too. And as great as these celeb actresses might be, they weren’t born superheroes! So, to get as close to being the kick-butt super chicks they are, they often have to go through intense training regimes and learn new skill sets they may not have taken on if it weren’t for the Marvel role. Olivia Munn, for instance, spent hours learning complex sword-fighting techniques for her role as Psylocke in X-Men: Apocalypse and spent hours each day perfecting fight moves and choreography for the part. Olivia Munn actually ended up doing a lot of the stunts in the film herself and had to train hard in martial arts in order to get her character’s moves just right.
12 They're Locked Into The Franchise, No Matter How Many Movies The Franchise Ends Up Making
One of the strictest rules Marvel Universe actresses are forced to follow is being locked into their role in the franchise. Basically, they have to sign a contractual agreement that they’ll abide by multi-movie appearances. While that might sound great for their career and a fantastic way to cash in on some serious dollar, being locked into their Marvel role can actually become pretty annoying, especially if there are other film projects they would rather work on that end up conflicting with Marvel Universe movie filming. Any superhero actress with a multi-film contract, which is most of the time, will have to prioritize their Marvel role even if they’re offered something else. This is quite a binding rule and one that cannot easily be shaken.
11 Keeping Up A Good Public Image Is Super Important
When an actress signs up for a role in a massive franchise like the Marvel Universe, she must respect a strict set of rules concerning her public image. Marvel Studios is owned by Disney, which as we all know tries to give off a wholesome, family-friendly image. Disney wouldn’t want any of its superhero actresses putting out an image that conflicts with its brand of “goodness”, so the Marvel ladies have to make sure they’re on their best behavior, especially while making public appearances. No scandals allowed in the Marvel Universe! Disney has a history of cutting ties with people who give their brand a bad name, so unless these actresses want to lose their sweet movie deal, they better not step out of line.
10 They Always Have To Be Available For Reshoots
One of the most annoying aspects of being in a Marvel film is always having to be available for reshoots. Even if they have another film role scheduled, actresses involved with the Marvel Universe have to drop everything in order to redo scenes if necessary. Obviously, this can cause a lot of inconveniences and cause mayhem to their busy schedules. It's actually one of the contractual obligations that they need to be ready to reshoot scenes if the director decides to do so. It can also cause problems with the actress' state of mind if she's trying to film another movie at the same time and has to jump into the mindset of one character and then another. Again, this is just one of the many ironclad rules that sadly the actresses just can’t escape.
9 They Might Have To Kiss Their Character Goodbye
It’s no secret that comic book movies love a good reboot, and often we get the same superhero getting a remake or a redo even within the space of just a few years. Actresses who sign on to the Marvel Universe have to be prepared to see themselves cast aside at any given point in order to make way for a new star to take over their character, should the company decide to reboot their story. Obviously knowing that you’ve been cast aside to make way for a potentially hotter, younger star is a bit of a hard blow, especially if you’ve become attached to the superhero character you’ve perhaps played multiple times. Marvel is a big business though and it’s always out to make a buck. So these ladies need to be prepared sadly to relinquish their role should the time come.
8 They're Forced To Be Overly Cautious
A lot of actresses do their own stunts for Marvel movies, but very often they are told to sit them out and allow a stunt double to do them for them. This is because of a very boring but important rule concerning insurance. Insurance on these actresses can be hugely expensive because of their superstar nature. Depending on the types of stunts required and the risks that will be involved, it can raise the insurance rate that the studio needs to take out. So, when a star does her own stunts, it could be a big liability on the studio if she gets hurt. For this reason, a lot of the main female stars are reined back from doing any potentially dangerous stunts and have to sit out and have someone else get the fun.
7 A Strict Diet And Exercise Plan Are A Must, No Cheating!
One of the biggest and most intense rules the actresses in the Marvel Universe have to follow is committing themselves to a crazy-strict diet and exercise regime in order to be as fit and as active as possible in order to take on their superhero role. Superhero actresses have to adhere to a certain look for these big franchise films, meaning they often have to shed pounds and build up muscle in order to look the part. Gruelling diet restrictions and long workout sessions are necessary for these actresses so that they can look as convincing as possible when suited and booted in their comic book outfits. Scarlett Johansson was apparently pretty concerned about having to fit into the tight suit she wears as Black Widow, and she had to undergo months of intense dieting and exercise in order to be ready for the part.
6 They Have To Endure Hours Of Makeup
For a lot of actresses in the Marvel Universe, a large portion of their acting day is taken up by sitting in the makeup chair. Take, for instance, Zoe Saldana who plays Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy. She had to sit for five hours a day so that every square inch of her could be covered in green paint. Similarly, it reportedly took eight hours for Jennifer Lawrence to be transformed into her all-blue character Mystique in X-Men: First Class. These actresses have to go through a lot to achieve the desired look the filmmakers have for their characters, and we have no doubt that even if they’re just sitting there, the amount of time it takes and the early hours they probably have to get up at for this process undoubtedly takes a toll on them.
5 Research Is Vital, They Have To Know The Ins And Outs Of Their Character
Most of the characters we see being portrayed in the Marvel films have had a decades-long history in comic books. So, in order to adequately prep for the role, the Marvel Universe actresses have to study up for hours to learn their character’s story and characteristics. Obviously in order to act out their role, these actresses need to know their parts in detail, so sitting down with a big stack of comic books is a must for them. Brie Larson posted the above pic of herself studying up for her forthcoming role as Captain Marvel and we can tell she’s committed to learning her character inside and out. People might underestimate just how much work it takes to become a superhero, and as we can see, it takes brains!
4 Universe Swapping Isn't Allowed
A big revelation to come out last year was the fact that Marvel actors and actresses have a contractual obligation to stay within their cinematic universe. That means, if a Marvel actress wants to do a DC Universe movie, well, she just can’t. She’s not allowed. It doesn’t matter how big or small a character may be, the fact of the matter is, there’s no room for universe swapping. This obviously puts some limitations on career choices these actresses can make, and they would have to think long and hard before committing themselves to a Marvel role because once they’re in, there’s no straying. Then again, there’s good evidence to show that overall, Marvel’s films have been better received than DCU’s, so really maybe this rule isn’t as big a deal as it may first seem.
3 Uncomfortable Costumes Are Part Of The Deal
One of the things Marvel actresses and actors get most excited about is, of course, wearing the awesome superhero costumes that go with their character. However, despite how fantastic it is don a suit and cape, wearing the actual costume isn’t all fun and games. The outfits the actresses are required to wear are often super uncomfortable and a real pain to get into. Scarlett Johansson had to wear an air-tight bodysuit for her role as Black Widow, all while filming in seriously hot weather. Similarly, it took two women and a lot of lube to get Olivia Munn into her Psylocke outfit for X-Men: Apocalypse. Watching these movies, it’s unlikely we actually think of how tough it must be for these women to do all these action sequences in these super-tight getups. But now, all we’ll be thinking is: how did she get into that?
2 Sometimes They Have To Work With People They Hate
Like with any job, there will be people you enjoy working with and people you hate working with, and for the Marvel actresses, this rule is no different. Sadly, most of the time actresses don’t really have a say in who their co-workers are, so it really sucks when they get stuck having to act with someone or for someone they can’t stand. This happened to Jessica Alba while filming Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, a gig that almost made her walk away from acting altogether. Alba accused the film’s director, Tim Story, of being overly shallow and sexist during a scene that called upon her to cry and act emotionally. Apparently, Tim Story told Alba that her face was “too real” and asked her to look prettier while she cried. Needless to say, the relationship between Alba and her director was less than sweet.
1 They're Sworn To Secrecy
Without question, the most important rule of all that these actresses must obey is to keep everything about their superhero movie a secret. One of Marvel Studio’s biggest marketing tools is to force its performers to keep quiet about any plot developments before a film’s release. Marvel goes out of its way to ensure secrecy, even going so far as only giving the actors and actresses partial scripts to avoid any information accidentally getting out to fans. Imagine how hard it would be to have to hold in all the unbelievably exciting news that comes with getting a part in a Marvel film! A few actors have slipped up and given too much info away in interviews, and we bet they got a good telling off for doing so.
Sources: Allure.com, BusinessInsider.com, Syfy.com, IMDB.com, SlashFilm.com