Like many actors in the past, Ethan Hawke has talked a little smack about superhero movies, perhaps a little tired about their ubiquity. We get it; sometimes, their super prevalency can get old. The actor/director/author/poet once threw a little shade at “Logan“ back in the day during his “First Reformed” awards circuit days.
So eyebrows were raised and questions of hypocrisy when Hawke signed on to play the villain of Marvel’s Disney+ series, “Moon Knight,” earlier this year. And, in an interview with The Ringer recently, about his series, “The Good Lord Bird,” Hawke addressed that head-on.
“A lot of it… is Oscar to me, to be honest with you,” the actor said when asked why he decided on “Moon Knight” after passing on several comic book roles in the past and the aforementioned shade. “I find him to be a very exciting player in my field. I like what he’s doing with his life. He reminds me of the actors, when I first arrived at New York, that I looked up to. Oscar’s younger than me, and I like the way he carries himself, and I like the way he thinks. And in general, good things happen when you’re in the room with people that you like the way they think, right?”
Hawke also spoke to the idea that “Moon Knight,” maybe more of a C-list character in the comics that is more grounded, supernatural, and, more morally ambiguous, is less known, which comes with its advantages.
“It’s where I’m at as an actor. To be honest, a lot of it is that ‘Moon Knight’ is a lesser-known story and [that] allows more creative freedom,” he said, while explaining that he had actually met with “Moon Knight” director Mohamed Diab, who he had met with on another project and wanted to work with him. “He’s a brilliant guy, and [I] wanted to work with him anyway. He’s a serious artist, and you have to speak to your time. You can’t pretend you don’t live in the time period you live in. You have to make your time period better.”
Hawke also addressed the problem with the A.D.D. nature of content these days, explaining that he likes blockbusters, but if it’s all we watch, it lessens what we ask ourselves as a culture about art.”
“I have no problem with [event] movies,” he explained, referencing the “Towering Inferno” and “Spider-Man,” as examples. “It’s part of the long tradition of blowing things up, but the danger is it gets harder to watch ‘Cries And Whispers,’ you’re conditioning audiences to have all the work done for them and just robbing them of their own creativity.”
Listen to the excerpt and the full interview below. Moon Knight” co-stars Oscar Issac, “Ramy” star May Calamawy and is expected to shoot later this year.