Who is 'Ant-Man 3' villain Kang the Conqueror? Lovecraft Country's Jonathan Majors reportedly cast in role
Kang the Conqueror first appeared in ‘The Avengers No. 8’, published in September 1964, and was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby and Kang is not a villain to be messed with
On Monday, September 14, it was reported by entertainment news outlets that the cast of ‘Ant-Man 3’ is getting bigger. ‘Lovecraft Country’ star Jonathan Majors will join the next Marvel Studios film starring Paul Rudd as the superhero who can shrink down to particulate proportions.
As per The Hollywood Reporter, sources close to the project said that Majors will play the role of the Marvel villain, Kang the Conqueror. Peyton Reed is back again in the director's chair after helming the previous two installments of the series -- ‘Ant-Man’ and ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’. Reportedly, ‘Rick & Morty’ writer Jeff Loveness is penning the script.
“The third Ant-Man movie is going to be a much bigger, more sprawling movie than the first two,” Reed said earlier this month of the film. “It's going to have a very different visual template.”
'Iron Man 3' introduced us to Harley Keener (Ty Simpkins), an accidental sidekick who takes care of the damaged Mark 46 armor after it crashlands near Tennessee. Last we saw, he was a grown-up present during Tony Stark's (Robert Downey Jr.) funeral in 'Avengers: Endgame'. Harley was the first kid with whom Stark developed a father-like relationship and then followed it up with Peter Parker. In August, a fan on Reddit fleshed out the details in full about how Harley may play a bigger role in the near future. The theory goes on to suggest that Harley was well on his way to becoming Iron Lad (played by Nathaniel Richards in the comics). If the series sticks to the Iron Lad comic plot, then Harley would eventually become Kang the Conqueror.
Whether or not this theory holds, the reports of Kang the Conqueror in the picture is exciting news. So, who is this villain?
Kang the Conqueror first appeared in ‘The Avengers No. 8’, published in September 1964, and was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. And Kang is not a villain to be messed with. Originally from the 31st century, Kang (Born Nathaniel Richards) traveled to Ancient Egypt to spend some time as a pharaoh and then overshot his return journey by a thousand years, landing in the 41st century. Kang the Conqueror regularly travels to the present timeline to battle -- and presents quite the hefty challenge to -- the superheroes of the Marvel Universe.
In his first appearance, Kang arrived on Earth from another timeline and declared his ownership of the planet. When the Avengers tried to stop him, he put up a stiff fight. And at one point, he took Captain America and sent him back to 1945. So, Kang’s superpowers, noticeably, are within the realm of time.
Now, here is where Kang and Iron Lad come together. Before the future-Kang traveled from the 31st century to Ancient Egypt, he traveled to the present day in disguise as the heroic Iron Lad, founding the team of teen superheroes known as the Young Avengers. In fact, even beyond Iron Lad, there are multiple variations of Kang running around: The Scarlet Centurion, Rama-Tut, and Immortus, who is actually a future version of himself from an alternate timeline.
What’s more, like in ‘Rick & Morty’, there exists a quorum of Kangs from alternate timelines that meets to discuss matters. It’s called the Council of Cross-Time Kangs, and it was first introduced in 1988’s ‘Avengers No. 292’. Suddenly Jeff Loveness’s involvement makes sense, doesn’t it?
But Kang’s connections to the Marvel universe extend beyond the Avengers. It has been reported that Kang might also be a descendent of either Mister Fantastic from the Fantastic Four or Doctor Doom, the group’s arch-nemesis. There was also a period where Kang lived a quiet life in 1910 as Victor Timely, during which time he met and inspired a young scientist named Phineas Horton, the man who would go on to create the Human Torch android in the late 1930s.
So, while he may be introduced in ‘Ant-Man 3’, one can only guess that he might end up having a much bigger role in the MCU -- it may even set up a new ‘Fantastic Four’ franchise.