Captain Marvel? More like Goose: A Love Story. The latest MCU origin story featured a Flerken named Goose; he was quite the scene-stealer and we all can’t stop raving about all the cuteness the character brought to the superhero blockbuster. Goose was portrayed by four cats (Reggie, Archie, Rizzo and Gonzo) who interacted with just about every one of the film’s stars, some of whom reportedly spooked the cats a bit at first, per their trainer, Ursula Brauner of Boone’s Animals for Hollywood. In her words:
I think maybe it was probably the Skrull costumes. That was one of our challenges because they look so different from people. Ben Mendelsohn was so amazing getting the cats used to the costume and makeup, though. He showed them how he moved and sounded, and he was just really great getting the cats to like him.
Wouldn’t we like to know what goes through the minds of the cats who found themselves working with the green alien race of Captain Marvel? The trainer explained it was a challenge at first, but thanks to the patience of Ben Mendelsohn, who plays Talos, the cat actors warmed up to working with the Skrulls.
In Ursula Brauner’s interview with Vulture, she continued with a sweet anecdote about how the filmmakers helped make one animal star at ease with him on set, with these words:
I remember being in the quad-jet set in a very tight space, and Ben doesn’t look anything like a human being in his costume. Reggie was a little unfurled. [Captain Marvel directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck] took the time to say, “Let’s stop what we’re doing and get the cat comfortable.” We had Reggie sitting on a chair, and Ben was sitting in the chair next to him, and we let Reggie go to him and explore on his own volition, and pretty soon, he realized Ben was just like us, but he just looked different. It’s about taking the time to stop. And it shows onscreen.
The cats portraying Goose in Captain Marvel certainly look comfortable on screen, as they just about own every moment they’re in, including some especially memorable ones with Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury. The actor has given some mixed signals about his time working with the cats on set, telling us that “always a good day” when Goose was there and other outlets "I am not a cat person."
Brauner did set the record straight in regards to Jackson, noting he was one of the best people for the cats to work with on the film. She said they loved him and would go right up to the actor. Of the four cats, Reggie was the star cat actor, who probably is in 70% of the scenes seen on screen, according the his trainer.
In the Captain Marvel comic books, Carol Danvers does hang with a Flerken, though his name is famously Chewie. The filmmakers decided to go with Goose instead to match the film’s roots in the ‘90s and pay tribute to the fellow Air Force film character.
Goose has been treated like just about every other human star in Captain Marvel, as the character has been seen in massive banners in his own character poster everywhere and even walked the red carpet at the movie’s premiere. You can gush over the cat actors in Captain Marvel, in theaters now.