Ghost Rider Actor Changes Tune on MCU Return

By Richard Nebens Updated:
Gabriel Luna, Ghost Rider

Gabriel Luna, who played the Robbie Reyes version of Ghost Rider on Marvel TV's Agents of SHIELD, just changed his tune on a potential return to the role in the MCU.

Ghost Rider has a prominent history in Marvel Comics along with a presence on the big screen prior to the MCU's introduction, with Nicolas Cage bringing Johnny Blaze to life before Gabriel Luna embodied Robbie Reyes for Marvel TV.

Agents of SHIELD's place in the MCU's continuity remains a mystery, with its canon status coming into question by the time Luna's Robbie Reyes first fires up his story during Season 4.

And then, even if the show is fully regarded as canon with the MCU's big-screen movies and the shows developed for Disney+, there's never been a guarantee that Luna would play the role again if asked.

Ghost Rider Star Now Open to MCU Return

The Direct Image

Speaking with Forbes, Agents of SHIELD star Gabriel Luna expressed his readinesss to return to his role as Ghost Rider in the MCU should the opportunity arise.

Luna made it clear that he "[loves] the character" and that he still gets asked about Robbie Reyes on a daily basis after his run in Season 4:

"Oh, I love that character. It was really special. It had only come into existence in 2014 (Robbie Reyes’ Ghost Rider), created by Felipe Smith, and then it was in 2016 that we did the show and literally not a day goes by that somebody doesn’t ask me about it.

He sees the demand for the character's return, and while it may still be "a few years out" if Marvel makes the decision to bring him back he's, "always open" to making it happen:

"It feels like the demand may be there and if the creative is there and it makes sense… I think with Marvel right now, it’s so intricately woven that it would be a few years out if they started to think about it, to do the character. I’m always open."

Luna used to answer this kind of question with far less eagerness, responding that he was "very happy" with what he and the show's team achieved and could look back fondly on his experience with Marvel, but was okay not playing the character again:

"My stock answer used to be, 'I loved what we did, I’m very happy with what we accomplished and I can be happy leaving it on the shelf and admiring what we did and have the audience remember it fondly, the way they do. To do the character again just gives me another opportunity to screw it up.'"

He's even willing to keep up with the physical responsibilities that come with the role, looking back to the work he did with Arnold Schwarzenegger for 2019's Terminator: Dark Fate. and confirming that "a good story" will get him on board:

"So there’s that mindset, but now I feel that I’m a lot more open should it come around. If it makes sense, I’m more than happy to…I try to keep myself in shape, Arnold demands it. So I’m still certainly physically capable of doing it and if it’s a great story and they’d have me, of course."

The source material for his roles has helped him develop a deep connection with these stories as well, noting his time as Ghost Rider and Tommy Miller in The Last of Us as key moments that he's enjoyed:

"With characters like Robbie, the Ghost Rider, and Tommy ('The Last of Us'), they’ve been established and I’ve been able to access the source material, fall in love with it in a lot of ways and sometimes when you love something that strongly, it may interrupt your process and what you’re trying to accomplish."

This comes as a major change of pace from how Luna used to answer the question of coming back to Marvel, although the actor has changed his tune on the matter over the last year.

Speaking with in January while promoting The Last of Us, the actor noted that "there's definitely a lot more to say" with Robbie Reyes and confirmed that he'd "absolutely be happy to continue" if he got the chance.

Will Gabriel Luna Return to the MCU as Ghost Rider?

Even with Agents of SHIELD's place in the MCU canon being somewhat uncertain, there seems to be a clear desire to see some form of Ghost Rider join the franchise before too long.

This is especially true with the MCU planning to dive into more supernatural storylines with movies like Blade and with the Multiverse opening doors to other universes filled with classic Marvel heroes.

Hearing Luna be so open to reprising his role as Ghost Rider is certainly encouraging for Marvel fans who want to see new expansions to the MCU narrative, particularly with the Rider's popularity in other forms on the big and small screen.

The MCU has already referenced Ghost Rider in an episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, and there was reportedly a fight scene including the fiery hero that was cut from Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness as well.

And while Luna may not get to fully realize his MCU potential for a few years, these quotes could speed up the process and get the thrilling hero into the story in the not-too-distant future.

Gabriel Luna can be seen as Ghost Rider in Season 4 of Agents of SHIELD, which is now streaming on Disney+.

- About The Author: Richard Nebens
Richard Nebens joined The Direct in March 2020, now serving as the site's Senior Writer and also working as an assistant editor and content creator. He started his journalism career as a hobby in 2019 and is passionate about sharing news and stories from the entertainment industry, especially comic book movies, comedy, and sci-fi. Richard looks to expand his knowledge about movies and TV every day, and he is eager to stay locked into the latest releases and breaking news at every opportunity.