The Punisher — and his iconic skull logo — is one of Marvel’s most recognizable characters, and has been depicted three times previously in live-action films; by Dolph Lundgren (1989) Thomas Jane (2004) and Ray Stevenson in (2008). Yet this will be the first time the character has been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe; the shared continuity between the massively successful Marvel Studios films and the Marvel Television shows. The live-action rights to the character were formerly with Lionsgate — who released 2004’s “The Punisher” and 2008’s “Punisher: War Zone” — before returning to Marvel in 2010.
Bernthal played Shane Walsh on the first two seasons of “The Walking Dead,” and has appeared on the big screen in “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Fury.” Soon after the announcement, the actor took to Twitter to share his excitement:
Thanks for the love yall. Let’s get it. Honored. pic.twitter.com/ZQ4xNfocHH
— Jon Bernthal (@jonnybernthal) June 9, 2015
“Jon Bernthal brings an unmatched intensity to every role he takes on, with a potent blend of power, motivation and vulnerability that will connect with audiences,” Marvel Head of Television Jeph Loeb said in the announcement on Marvel.com. “Castle’s appearance will bring dramatic changes to the world of Matt Murdock and nothing will be the same.”
Frank Castle/The Punisher was first introduced in 1974’s “Amazing Spider-Man” #129, created by Gerry Conway, Ross Andru and John Romita Sr.. A military veteran who lost his family due to mob violence, the character is distinguished from other Marvel crimefighters due to his readiness to use lethal force on criminals — and the frequency in which he does it.
The second season of “Daredevil” is set to debut in 2016. Charlie Cox and Rosario Dawson will both return, as the title character and Claire Temple, respectively. Doug Petrie and Marco Ramirez, who both worked on the first season, will take over as showrunners from Steven DeKnight.