Jonathan Majors plays Kang the Conquerer, a character capable of traveling through time, in the new film, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
But ironically, his first meeting with Marvel Studios almost saw him almost walk out because the casting office was taking too long to see him.
“I hope this doesn’t bite me in the ass, but I walked out of my Marvel general [meeting],” Majors said. “This was a long time ago. I had just gotten out of drama school and I’m running around town and I’m sitting in the office. I grew up in a very particular way and I don’t want to waste nobody’s time. So I got in there and they’re just busy. And I was like, ‘I’m supposed to be here, right?’ It got long and I went, ‘I’m just going to go. It’s cool. I’ll just go.’”
Majors didn’t make it out of the building.
“I got to the door, but then they said [casting director] Sarah Finn was going to come,” Majors said. “We got in the room and we chatted. We were having this great conversation. I think it was three years later that we had the Kang chat. And there’s no trepidation now, especially because of who Kang is. When I said yes, we got the whole picture, and what is being laid out is cohesive.”
Majors bulked up for the role of Kang, eating 6,100 calories a day and lifting several times a day. The results are getting noticed as transformational from how he looked in the film, The Last Black Man in San Francisco.
“In my drama school, something they really pushed on us was “don’t lift weights, don’t work out,” he told Vanity Fair. They were adamant, especially with the fellas, about not getting too big, primarily because it changes your joints, changes what we call the breathing costume. I always had an issue with that because I grew up playing sports at a very competitive level in Texas, so I came as strong as an 18-year-old kid can be. To answer the question, what it does for me is it brings you closer to the character. I’ve had this debate with my current mentors and old acting teachers where I go, “This is actually part of the craft of acting.” It brings you close to the characters and it gets quite spiritual. It is as little acting as possible, which is my biggest thing: Don’t lie. Tell the truth.