It’s clear that Marvel movie fans can expect a lot of new faces in the MCU in the coming years. Recently, Marvel Cinematic Universe’s (MCU) phase 4 has introduced us to a whole slew of new and exciting characters. We have been acquainted with the Eternals, Echo, Agatha Harkness, Yelena Bulova, Shang-Chi, and Xu Xialing. Plus, we have been introduced to Moon Knight, and potentially Blade. Now, another highly anticipated character will be making his MCU debut: Nova.
The news that Marvel is developing a Nova project was first reported on March 24th, 2022. While sources have reported Marvel’s plans for a future Nova project, Marvel itself has not officially confirmed the news. The project is reportedly set to be written by Sabir Pirzada, who has written 2 episodes for the Moon Knight series.
Nova is a popular name in the world of Marvel comics and is one that many cinematic fans have likely heard tossed around for phase 4. Here is everything that we know so far about Marvel’s Nova project.
Nova Explained: The Basics
Nova is a member of the Nova Corps, a group of heroes who can be best summed up as the Marvel Universe’s answer to the Green Lantern Corps. Each of these space cops is given access to the powerful Nova Force and charged with defending the galaxy from all manner of threats. All members of the Nova Corps carry a rank, whether they’re low-level Corpsmen, elite soldiers known as Centurions or the all-powerful Nova Prime. Each of these soldiers is guided by the Xandarian Worldmind, a sentient computer containing all the knowledge and wisdom of centuries worth of Nova Corps soldiers.
While a fully functioning Nova Corps usually consists of several hundred members, most stories tend to revolve around one of two Earth heroes, Richard Rider and Sam Alexander. Both of these heroes have risen to the challenge of being a Nova Corpsmen and carried the torch for the Corps when the Marvel Universe was at its darkest.
What is Marvel’s Nova project?
Per Deadline, sources have confirmed that a Nova project is in development, however, the nature of the project is unknown. As we know, Marvel has recently delved into the small screen with their miniseries on Disney Plus. This means Nova could either be a feature film or TV series. With WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki receiving such high praise, it wouldn’t be surprising for Nova to get his own series.
Additionally, Nova could also be another of Marvel’s cinematic projects. Many of Marvel’s phase 4 releases have already been announced, but it remains to be seen what lies beyond that. Marvel may continue to produce phase 4 or start a whole new phase 5. Either way, Nova could easily be a feature film in Marvel’s cinematic future.
Who Is Nova?
Marvel’s Nova project will center around the superhero Nova, otherwise known as Richard Rider. Nova was given his official origin story in the 1976 comic book titled, The Man Called Nova #1.
While the upcoming Marvel’s Nova will likely make some modifications to the character, Nova is traditional a human named Richard Rider. He is a New York City high school student who is tasked by a dying member (Rohmann Dey, the Nova Prime, or highest-ranking official) of an interstellar police force to become his replacement, giving him superhuman powers (and a costume) in the process. Unsure of how to use his powers, Richard Rider becomes a superhero, learns on the fly, and eventually is inducted into The Nova Corps, said interstellar police force. While we are not throwing any shade at legendary Marvel Comics writer Marv Wolfman, who created the character, you might remember this as being the exact same origin story as DC Comics’ Green Lantern.
Marvel Comics debuted Nova in 1976, and the character ran in his own series until 1979. After some appearances in Fantastic Four and the equally little-remembered Rom the Spaceknight, Nova fell out of rotation. He was revived as a character in the late 1980s and became a fixture of cosmic/space-oriented storylines like Annihilation and The Thanos Imperative.
How Will The Marvel Cinematic Universe Fit Nova In?
We will have to once again speculate here, but we will guess that the Marvel Cinematic Universe entry point for Nova will be connected to The Guardians of the Galaxy in some way. Nova has frequently been associated with the motley found a family of Marvel Comics space odysseys, and actually is a longtime love interest of Gamora. Given that the current status of Gamora is that she is a time-displaced version of herself that has no memories (or to put it another way, has not experienced) of her romantic relationship with Peter Quill/Star-Lord, there seems like a lot of potential for group conflict there.
In a way, Marvel has actually already introduced Nova. By which, we mean:
Who will be the cast of Marvel’s New Project?
So far, sources have only confirmed Nova’s projected writer, Pirzada. No actors have been tied to the series. However, the members of the Nova Corps who have appeared in the MCU could potentially make a reappearance. After all, Reilly’s Dey made quite an impression and considering that his character is very vital to Rider’s story, it would make sense for him to reprise his role.
Meanwhile, Irani Rael (Glenn Close) also appeared in Guardians of the Galaxy. She appears as the Nova Prime during that time period. The stern, yet thoughtful, woman, who defended her people and understood the Orb’s power, made an excellent leader. Hence, Close is an actress who fans would certainly enjoy seeing reprise her role, too.
While some of the familiar Nova Corps might figure into the series, the rest of the cast is a mystery. Nova’s youthful age in his origin story, however, favors a younger actor for his portrayal. Aidan Gallagher, Dylan O’Brien, Ryan Potter, Logan Lerman, or Asa Butterfield are all young, talented actors who could potentially take on the role. Also, there are pre-existing rumors that Marvel was eyeing Dunkirk’s Fionn Whitehead for the role of Nova.
When can we expect Marvel new project?
Unfortunately, Nova has not been officially confirmed by Marvel or Disney. Therefore, it’s hard to say when Nova will make an appearance. And Marvel already has three films slated for 2023—The Marvels, Guardians of the Galaxy 3, and Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. The next film after that is slated to be an untitled Fantastic Four film. Thus, if Nova is a feature film, it will likely not be released until 2024 or later.
Similarly, Marvel’s 2022-2023 series are filled up pretty well, too. Ironheart, Armor Wars, and an untitled Wakanda series will follow the late 2022 release of Secret Invasion. Since Marvel has been releasing more series than films per year, this could potentially open room for a Nova series in late 2023.
However, since Nova hasn’t been confirmed by Marvel, or started production, a late 2023 or 2024 release is likely the earliest fans can hope to see it, regardless of the project’s nature.
Nova has ties to some of the upcoming projects, so Nova himself could potentially make his first appearance earlier in another MCU project, such as Guardians of the Galaxy 3 in 2023, or even in Secret Invasion in 2022.