Julia Garner Cast As Silver Surfer In MCU Reboot

Some major Marvel casting news here, as Deadline has confirmed a persistent rumor that The Fantastic Four will introduce a female take on classic space-faring hero, the Silver Surfer.

Emmy Award-winner Julia Garner (Ozark, Inventing Anna) will play the Surfer… but not a gender-switched take on Norrin Radd! Garner will actually take on the role of Shalla-Bal.

In the original Marvel Comics continuity, Shalla-Bal was the Empress of the planet Zenn-La, and was the first love of Norrin Radd. When Galactus came to devour their planet, Radd volunteered to become his herald in exchange for sparing Zenn-La.

Later, when Franklin Richards took over as the new Galactus, he imbued Shalla with the same cosmic powers and allowed her to serve as a twin herald alongside Radd.

Garner joins Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones, The Last of Us) as Reed Richards, aka Mr. Fantastic, Vanessa Kirby (Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning) as Sue Storm, aka the Invisible Woman, Joseph Quinn (Stranger Things) as Johnny Storm, aka the Human Torch, and Ebon Moss-Bachrach (The Punisher, The Bear) as Ben Grimm, aka the Thing.

There are rumors that both Cillian Murphy (Oppenheimer) and Mads Mikkelsen (Rogue One) are top picks to play Doctor Doom, but other actors are sure to be in contention.

Javier Bardem is still rumored to be the top choice for Galactus, but his schedule may prevent him from signing on.

Plot details are still a mystery, but a recent rumor claimed that The Fantastic Four will actually be set in an alternate universe. If accurate, this would obviously suggest that the characters will be Variants from some other part of the Multiverse that will eventually find their way to the main MCU timeline (possibly due to the interdimensional rift Dar-Benn caused at the end of The Marvels).

Kevin Feige has also confirmed that this will not be another origin story for the super-team.

“A lot of people know this origin story. A lot of people know the basics. How do we take that and bring something that they’ve never seen before?” he said in a 2022 interview, comparing this new take on the heroes to Marvel Studios’ pact with Sony to bring Spider-Man into the MCU. “We’ve set a very high bar for ourselves with bringing that to the screen.”

Matt Shakman will direct the movie. Production is expected to get underway this summer, and the film is set to bow on July 25, 2025.