Marvel's Ironheart Star Dominique Thorne Didn't Have to Audition for MCU Superhero Role

Dominique Thorne says there was "no audition at all" for her role as Riri Williams in Marvel Studios series Ironheart. Thorne has just two acting credits to her name: the Oscar-winning If Beale Street Could Talk and the freshly Oscar-nominated Judas and the Black Messiah, where Thorne appears opposite Marvel's Black Panther star Daniel Kaluuyah. When Thorne joins the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the lead of her Disney+ series, she will play Riri Williams, a young genius inventor who creates the most advanced suit of armor since Iron Man's (Robert Downey Jr).

"I was at home in Delaware and I got a call asking if I would like to play this role. It was the best phone call I could have ever received," Thorne told Empire Magazine. "I was so shocked, in fact, that there was a considerable lag in the conversation! (laughs) I was waiting for them to say, like, 'Oh, we'll send you the sides' or, 'Get your tape over to us.' But there was none of that."

Thorne explained, "It was just like, 'Would you like to do this?' It was probably the most unique experience I've ever had because there was no audition at all."

Riri Williams Dominique Thorne Jeff Mosier Marvel Comics
(Photo: Jeff Mosier / Marvel Comics)

The 23-year-old actress is just the latest young heroine to enter the television side of the MCU, which continues when Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) return in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier on March 19. Along with Thorne's Riri Williams, new superheroes still to come include Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) in Hawkeye and Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani) in Ms. Marvel.

"One of the best things about expanding the MCU to Disney+ is that our team at Marvel Studios is finally able to do some of the things that we always wanted to do but didn't quite have the right outlet for," Marvel Studios president and producer Kevin Feige said during the Disney Investor Day presentation in December, where Feige personally announced Thorne when revealing Marvel's Ironheart series.

"For me, at this point, it's really about the story," Thorne previously told BlackFilmAndTV about her upcoming Marvel Studios series. "That's what many of us who enter into this profession think. What draws you in is the ability to tell stories that mean something to people. In high school, the motto was to empathize, to empower, or to educate and so that is what I still abide by today. So hopefully, I'm involved in a story that is doing that."

She added, "There are real people with real stories and real emotions at the center of it. Even if it's not my experience or your experience, it allows somebody the opportunity to be changed; the opportunity to have their mind expanded or get educated in a new way. I think that's one of the most beautiful and powerful things that this form is capable of."

Marvel Studios has not set a release date for Ironheart on Disney+.

Marvel's The Falcon and the Winter Soldier debuts on Disney+ beginning Friday, March 19.

Want to learn more about the latest Marvel Studios series? Check back on ComicBook CRAM every day leading up to the premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and click here for even more articles and videos to find out everything you need to know about the new show!

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