"It is my last one, actually."
These are the heartbreaking words of Jennifer Lawrence, speaking with us in March earlier this year, talking about her time with the "X-Men" franchise. According to Lawrence herself, her days playing the proud shape-shifting mutant Mystique are at an end as of next year's "X-Men: Apocalypse."
Before you start feeling too blue, there's still hope that Jennifer's "X-Men" experience isn't at an end just yet — a lot can change between now and whatever happens after "Apocalypse" — but it's worth preparing for the future where her days as Mystique are a thing of the past. It's an extra bummer, because her last days as Katniss Everdeen are looming, too.
But maybe there's some good news here, too. Jennifer leaving "X-Men" doesn't mean she has to leave the superhero scene behind. In fact, there's one big Marvel character just waiting for someone of Jennifer's Oscar-winning caliber…
…Carol Danvers, the hero at the heart of "Captain Marvel." Here's why Jennifer and Carol could be a terrific match:
First of all, who is Carol Danvers?Marvel Comics
She's an Air Force hot shot who becomes the proud new owner of super-powers thanks to a job at NASA and an eventful encounter with the Kree, the same alien race as "Guardians of the Galaxy" villain Ronan the Accuser. Carol is superhumanly strong, fast, and she can fly, among other gifts. She takes no nonsense and she kicks your butt with ease. She went by many names over the years, but in recent history finally graduated from Ms. Marvel to fully accepting the Captain Marvel mantle — a mantle she'll wield in her very own movie in 2018.
Why Jennifer?Getty Images
She has the take no prisoners attitude Carol needs, seen in just about all of her roles from "Hunger Games" through "Silver Linings Playbook" and beyond. She brings immense star power to an untested character; on the Jennifer Lawrence brand alone, "Captain Marvel" would undoubtedly soar. Just like the intense fandom surrounding Captain Marvel, called the Carol Corps, Jennifer comes equipped with a massive fan base of her own that she can bring to the table. She also has the hair game on lock.
See Carol's hair:Marvel Comics
Now see Jennifer's hair:Getty Images
Like I said, she has it on lock.
Oh, and by the way…Getty Images
She would be in the same superhero universe as Bradley Cooper. Sure, she would just share the screen with Cooper's disembodied voice via talking raccoon, but still! It has to happen.
Why NOT Jennifer?Fox
Well, she's already in a Marvel universe as Mystique, so there's that. We don't want her to leave that role behind, because she's terrific as Raven Darkholme. But if she WANTS to leave "X-Men," there's no reason she couldn't hop on over to the MCU. It wouldn't be unprecedented — Chris Evans was Human Torch for Fox well before he was Captain America — she just can't be both at the same time.
The bigger deal is this: "Captain Marvel" presents an amazing opportunity for an up-and-coming actor to make a name for herself — an opportunity Jennifer does not need. Her name is in big, bright lights, all over the place, and needs no help from anyone to stay in the spotlight.
There are a LOT of women who would be awesome as Carol Danvers, from "Mission: Impossible" breakout star Rebecca Ferguson to "Scandal" star Kerry Washington and plenty of others. There is no shortage if incredible casting choices for Carol, and given Marvel's track record, we're sure it's going to work out.
That said, if Marvel feels they need someone with huge star power for Carol, there are few better candidates than Jennifer. It would be a bit of a shift for fans of the Oscar winner occasionally known as Mystique, but shifting is right in her wheelhouse.