With Coulson living on in a form that has yet to be determined, it’s clear that Joss Whedon’s upcoming pilot and the first live action Marvel television series S.H.I.E.L.D. will be gaining major publicity as it’s moved into casting. Though we don’t quite know what to fully expect yet, it’s Coulson’s involvement that hints we could be headed into prequel mode…unless that fan-favorite character is somehow resurrected. Now, the agent isn’t standing solo anymore as the first female of the series has been cast in the form of an ER actress.
Deadline reports that Ming-Na has been cast as “Agent Melinda May. Soulful and slightly damaged by her combat experiences, Melinda is an ace pilot, a weapons expert and a soldier who can — and has — gone beyond the call of duty. The character was originally listed on the pilot’s casting breakdown as Agent Althea Rice, aka The Calvary”.
Na joins previously cast Clark Gregg, who will be reprising his role as Agent Phil Coulson for the potential new series. Interestingly enough, there was plenty of speculation regarding the previously revealed character details in casting calls that the names of the roles could be faux-titles in order to keep fans from revealing the true identity of our five main characters. Though there’s small buzz regarding one of the agents possibly gaining superpowers, they are currently nothing more than soldiers who are the human representation of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Penned by Whedon, brother Jed and sister-in-law Maurissa Tancharoen, Jed and Maurissa will act as showrunners should the series be picked up by ABC while Joss has been attached to direct the series first episode. Production isn’t expected to kick off until Early 2013, with a decision to be reached in the months following.