Hawkeye is now halfway through its six-episode run — and everything, from the lovable dynamic between Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton and Hailee Steinfeld’s Kate Bishop to the holiday-infused action-packed set pieces, has been a thrill to behold. One of the highlights character-wise has been Alaqua Cox’s Maya Lopez (aka Echo) who was introduced at the end of Episode 2 before exploding onto the scene the following week. The character, whether it be her dark connection with Hawkeye or her tragic backstory with her father, has left a lasting impression in her short amount of screen time so far.
In preparation for the new episode, which premieres this Wednesday, Marvel Studios has released a new featurette that takes us behind the scenes with the MCU’s newest antagonist. Cox, who is Deaf in real life just like her character, starts the video off by introducing herself in sign language.
“We went worldwide to look for our Maya Lopez, and we really wanted to stay true to the characters in the comics,” producer Trinh Tran said. Cox added to that by saying, “I never dreamt of being an actor. A tweet said ‘female, Native, athletic, smart’… everyone texted me, ‘This is you!’ The rest is history.”
Hawkeye directors Bert and Bertie added to that, saying, “ She’s brand new to this whole thing. Something that happens with some actors, that when they step in front of the camera there’s this kind of like, collective inhale of breath, and everyone’s like… (gasping noise). She just has this star quality to her.”
Bert praised Cox, saying, “She’s an amazing character to have set up, and with a new actress like Alaqua is, that’s been such a gift for us,” and Cox ends the video by stating, “I feel very proud, and I’m excited to show that with disabilities, anything is possible.” Echo definitely has a big future in the MCU with her own spinoff series ahead of her, and Hawkeye is just the beginning of this compelling character’s journey. It will be interesting to see how the conflict between her and Clint is resolved and where characters yet to be revealed, like Florence Pugh’s Yelena, also fall in their New York City crime war.
You can watch the full Echo featurette below. The next episode of Hawkeye premieres on Wednesday, December 8 on Disney+ and for all the latest news on the show, stick with Collider.