A new report has revealed that Marvel Studios discussed replacing Kang the Conqueror with Doctor Doom in the Marvel Cinematic Universe following Jonathan Majors’ arrest in March 2023. Majors debuted as a variant of Kang the Conqueror, He Who Remains, in Loki season 1, before being set up to be the overarching villain of the MCU’s Multiverse Saga. In March 2023, however, Jonathan Majors was arrested on allegations of assault, throwing his future in the MCU into jeopardy, though Marvel Studios hasn’t officially commented, perhaps waiting for a definite verdict from the case.
Following months of production delays, Hollywood strikes, controversies, and low ratings at Marvel Studios, a report by Variety has revealed that executives, including President Kevin Feige, had discussed plans to replace Kang the Conqueror in the MCU at the studio’s annual retreat in Palm Springs. Kang the Conqueror reportedly would have been replaced by iconic Marvel Comics foe Doctor Doom, significantly changing plans for the MCU’s upcoming storylines. Doctor Doom has been rumored to debut in the MCU’s Multiverse Saga anyway, but he perhaps would have had a larger role if these plans had gone into motion.
At the gathering in Palm Springs, executives discussed backup plans, including pivoting to another comic book adversary, like Dr. Doom. But making any shift would carry its own headaches.
Majors has currently appeared in three major MCU projects: as He Who Remains in Loki season 1, as Kang the Conqueror and the Council of Kangs in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, and as Victor Timely in Loki season 2. He has been billed as being pivotal to the expansion of the MCU’s Multiverse Saga, culminating in his starring spot in 2026’s Avengers: The Kang Dynasty. The reveal that plans were discussed to replace Kang the Conqueror with Doctor Doom in the MCU is shocking, but understandable, as Marvel Studios was perhaps under pressure to solidify the MCU’s future without knowing what the verdict of Majors’ trial would be.
As further revealed by Variety’s report, a source claimed Marvel had considered moving away from focusing on Majors’ Kang prior to the actor’s arrest due to the reception of Quantumania. “It gave people pause given that Quantumania didn’t exactly land,” the source told Variety. Between Majors arrest, his case heading to trial later in November, and the poor reception of Quantumania, it makes sense that Marvel Studios might look at changing course, no matter the “headaches.”
If anybody was fit to replace Kang the Conqueror, however, Doctor Doom perhaps would have been Marvel Studios’ strongest choice. The Fantastic Four and Avengers adversary is one of the most recognizable and memorable supervillains in Marvel Comics, and he has been rumored to be debuting in the MCU soon, potentially in Marvel Studios’ Fantastic Four reboot. The implication that he could be appearing soon anyway might have meant that Marvel’s overarching plans didn’t need to change too much, especially since Doctor Doom has been suggested to be the villain of 2027’s Avengers: Secret Wars. Even so, it’s unclear exactly how massive the changes to the MCU would have been.
Key Release Dates
Captain America: Brave New World
Marvel’s Fantastic Four
Avengers: The Kang Dynasty
Avengers: Secret Wars
Marvel Studios discussed replacing Kang with Doom. Read More