Charlie Cox thought Vincent D’Onofrio was out of his gourd when he predicted that their Marvel characters, Daredevil and Kingpin, would eventually be welcomed into the MCU proper. The former stars of Netflix’s canceled Daredevil series (which now resides on Disney+) may have been sworn enemies on screen, but off screen, they’re close friends who’ve routinely supported each other through the rollercoaster of emotions that came with their cancellation and now rebirth.
As much as Cox and D’Onofrio believe that Matt Murdock and Wilson Fisk can be both new and old characters at the same time, Cox admits that he doesn’t yet know how their upcoming Disney+ series, Daredevil: Born Again, will handle the question of whether they’re playing the exact same characters from Daredevil, just on a new trajectory.
“I honestly don’t know. I haven’t read any scripts yet, and we haven’t really talked at length about what this current iteration will be like,” Cox tells The Hollywood Reporter during a post-finale press day for She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. “Just by the fact that they’re using me as an actor to play the part, it’s clear that there are going to be some consistencies and … some differences. We have an opportunity to at least take what worked really well and then also add some cool elements, ideas, concepts and themes that we weren’t able to do before. So it’s Daredevil, but upgraded.”
While it’s still early days, Cox very much wants more MCU reunions with his former castmates from Daredevil and The Defenders, such as Jessica Henwick, who played Colleen Wing.
“She’s amazing. I could also say that about a number of people that I worked with not only on Daredevil, but also on the other shows we did there,” Cox says. “So I don’t know what they’re thinking, but I will absolutely put in a good word [for Henwick]. And I did get a lovely text from her the other day saying that she read the news and was thrilled for me.”
In a recent conversation with THR, Cox also discusses his second MCU appearance on She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, before addressing Tatiana Maslany’s request for a guest role on Daredevil: Born Again.
Well, a year ago, you were dutifully playing the denial game, and now, you’re tied to five different Marvel projects. So I take it you’re enjoying your second bite of the apple?
(Laughs.) Oh man, it feels like a rebirth. I never expected this to happen, so I’m loving every minute of it. I’m feeling incredibly fortunate and blessed that all of this panned out in the way that it did. In a weird way, we are just starting the journey, but I’m loving every second. I feel very, very grateful
When you made your MCU debut in Spider-Man: No Way Home, I heard that you originally caught a snow globe in the apartment scene. Was the brick a complete surprise to you when you eventually saw the finished movie?
No, I saw it in ADR. For the readers, ADR is when you go into a booth and re-record dialogue that doesn’t sound right because of a microphone issue or something like that. So I’d gone in to do some ADR on the scene, and that’s when I saw the brick. So it wasn’t a huge surprise because I remember there being some conversation on the day that they weren’t clear about what it was going to be, but obviously, the way that scene was shot, I wasn’t able to literally catch a flying globe or brick. So I kind of anticipated it being messed with a little bit.
There’s so much debate about whether you’re currently playing the same Matt Murdock from Daredevil, but in She-Hulk episode eight, we heard Daredevil’s old theme song, we saw some of his old moves and homage was paid to his beloved hallway fights. So is he the same guy, just on a new trajectory within the MCU?
I honestly don’t know. I haven’t really gotten to that point with the writers of our next Daredevil show. So I haven’t read any scripts yet, and we haven’t really talked at length about what this current iteration will be like. Just by the fact that they’re using me as an actor to play the part, it’s clear that there are going to be some consistencies and there are also going to be some differences. What they are and how we integrate the two is going to be the challenge of the new show. These things are really complicated, and obviously, opinions are always divided. What people like is always varied, but we have an opportunity to at least take what worked really well and then also add some cool elements, ideas, concepts and themes that we weren’t able to do before. So it’s Daredevil, but upgraded.
People keep thinking it has to be one way or the other, but you guys can really have it both ways. You can put him on a new path while referencing his past, selectively.
So it sounds like you’re of the same mind.
I think so, yeah. I’m just so thrilled to be included that I’m also keeping quiet. We’re making noise, but I like to let everyone else do their jobs. (Laughs.)
So now that you’re the apple of Marvel Studios’ eye, can you do us all a favor and put in a good word for Jessica Henwick’s Colleen Wing? She’s too good to not get the Cox/D’Onofrio treatment.
(Laughs.) Yeah, she’s amazing. She’s amazing. Look, I agree with you, wholeheartedly. I could also say that about a number of people that I worked with not only on Daredevil, but also on the other shows we did there. So I don’t know what they’re thinking, but I will absolutely put in a good word. And you’re 100 percent right about that. [Jessica] is awesome. And I did get a lovely text from her the other day saying that she read the news and was thrilled for me.
Do your knitting skills miss having Krysten Ritter nearby?
(Laughs.) Yeah, I haven’t done a ton of knitting since that moment. I achieved the scarf that I made, but I think I’m done on the knitting front. But I was very proud of that.
I spoke to Vincent D’Onofrio for Hawkeye, and he told me that the two of you served as each other’s Marvel support line. Do you still have these long phone calls?
(Laughs.) Yeah, but now they’re actually filled with facts rather than [hearsay]. For years, we would just speak as friends. The show had ended, and everything else had moved on, so we were just mates. But he would always say, “They’re going to call us.” And I’d get off the phone and be like, “No, they’re not, buddy. It’s over. Let it go. Too much time has passed.” So he was right all along. I really thought he was delusional about that. (Laughs.) We chatted the other day, and I was like, “What do you know?” And he’s like, “Well, I heard this, and when I spoke to the writers, they told me this.” And I was like, “Well, I heard this. So maybe that makes sense.”
On a similar note as Jessica, I spoke to Tatiana Maslany yesterday, and I’m supposed to pressure you to cast her on Daredevil: Born Again so that the two of you can debate superhero privacy some more.
(Laughs.) I just love the idea that you or her or anyone thinks that I have casting abilities. Listen, I could not be more enthused by that idea. I really hope that it happens. I’m also very sheepish about talking about any casting or any characters, because I don’t want to say something that then becomes a news story and kind of influences the writers in a way. I like to let them do their job, and I’ll do mine. But I had such fun working with [Tatiana]. I happen to think she’s one of the great actors of our generation. So that, in and of itself, as well as being a lovely person, it was just such a thrill and a joy to work with her. So I would absolutely love that, but who knows? We’ll have to see. We’ve got 18 episodes for it to happen, so maybe.
Physically speaking, you hadn’t done the Daredevil choreography in a little while, so how much muscle memory was still in you?
Enough to get through it and enough to do it. I was pretty sore and achy. I had just finished filming something, and I had to fly in to do it all. So I had a few days to work with the stunt team and do all that kind of stuff. Getting used to the suit again was also a challenge, but there was enough there for them to use a significant amount of what I actually shot. I’m finishing up a project at the moment in Dublin, and I’ve been working with an amazing MMA trainer over here. So I’ve started to do some training with him to get ready for next year. So it’s been really fun to do that again and take it to a new level.
So what’s it like to play ping-pong with Mark Ruffalo and Tim Roth looking over your shoulder?
Yeah, someone showed me that today, but I don’t have a real memory of it. Obviously, it happened because there I am, but it doesn’t look like I’m winning. (Laughs.)
Lastly, I can’t imagine your Daredevil bingo card ever had “walk of shame” written on it.
What do you mean by bingo card?
It’s basically a preconceived list of ideas and expectations that one has for an experience. In other words, you probably never envisioned doing such a thing as Daredevil.
Right, right. Yeah, that was really fun. My memory of it was that it was an idea that was shot, but it was unclear whether it would work, both in the show and for the character. But we shot it anyway. It was obviously a very quick thing to shoot, but has it had a good response? I wouldn’t know.
Yeah, it’s a big hit.
It’s a little different, and I’m all for that. Anything you can do to humanize these guys is helpful because it makes them relatable. So when they do end up doing something extraordinary, you feel that a little bit more viscerally.
Well, Charlie, similar to Hugh Jackman and Robert Downey’s superhero characters, you were born to play Matt Murdock/Daredevil, and it’s a real pleasure to have you both back in action.
God bless you. Thank you for saying that.
She-Hulk is now streaming on Disney+. This interview was edited for length and clarity.