Rumors and chatter we have followed and reported on for months are being picked up by major outlets. Two that were lent considerable credibility this week are Michael B. Jordan being in line to play Superman and J.J. Abrams’ status helming a DC project or two.
Variety reported in a lengthy exclusive about the future of the DC Extended Universe that Jordan met with WB execs earlier this year about playing Superman. There’s been talk of the studio moving in a bold new direction with Supes and Jordan’s name has come up in the conversation multiple times. But this is the first substantive report that a meeting took place between the two parties.
Variety notes talks stalled but not over a lack of interest. Jordan pitched them his whole vision for the character – what that is they don’t say. The only real hurdles were scheduling and the wait involved: Jordan has a lot to occupy his time, and such a production – without a script or director – isn’t expected for another few years. 2023 is the earliest estimate.
It’s suspected Warner Bros. is considering Jordan as part of a greater push for diversity, particularly regarding DC films. He might play Kal-El but, if not, the list of possibilities is short.
When his name was first mentioned, we at Bounding noted he could play Val-Zod, an Earth-2 agoraphobic Kryptonian who lived out his formative years secretly in enclosed spaces. Val eventually emerged and bested a brainwashed Kal-El in a battle to save the planet.
Jordan spoke to Oprah about vying for Superman, in February to address the rumor, and brought up Calvin Ellis, an Earth-23 Kal-El who is black and became President of the United States:
“I would be Calvin Ellis. There’s another version of Superman from Earth-23. I’m a comic book guy…There’s another version of Superman in another dimension that is black already in the comic books that exist. I think the comic book purists can accept that more than Clark Kent from Kansas. That’s a different thing.”
Either character would play on the safe side and not upset hardcore fans while also allowing WB to do the whole standalone Elseworlds thing, a la Joker, that’s improving their fortunes.
Related: Black Panther Actor Michael B. Jordan Responds to Superman Rumors with Oprah!
But what of Henry Cavill? He made it clear recently in an interview with Men’s Health he is still Superman until further notice, saying “The cape is in the closet. It’s still mine,” and “I’ve not given up on the role. There’s a lot I have to give for Superman yet.”
Cavill may not get Man of Steel 2 off the ground but Grace Randolph hears there is heavy speculation Dwayne Johnson wants him for Black Adam 2 so Superman can have a showdown with anti-hero Teth-Adam. This would keep Cavill as the mainline DCEU Superman if there is such a thing.
I’m hearing Superman wouldn’t show up until Black Adam 2 – but The Rock does want that fight, and he wants Cavill of course becomes Dany reps him
— Grace Randolph (@GraceRandolph) November 19, 2019
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The Man in Black ⚡️ Like most kids growing up, I dreamed about being a superhero. Having cool superpowers, fighting for what’s right and always protecting the people. It all changed for me, when I was 10yrs old and was first introduced to the greatest superhero of all time – SUPERMAN. As a kid, Superman was the hero I always wanted to be. But, a few years into my fantasy, I realized that Superman was the hero, I could never be. I was too rebellious. Too rambunctious. Too resistant to convention and authority. Despite my troubles, I was still a good kid with a good heart – I just liked to do things my way. Now, years later as a man, with the same DNA I had as a kid – my superhero dreams have come true. I’m honored to join the iconic #DCUniverse and it’s a true pleasure to become, BLACK ADAM. BLACK ADAM is blessed by magic with the powers equal to SUPERMAN, but the difference is he doesn’t toe the mark or walk the line. He’s a rebellious, one of a kind superhero, who’ll always do what’s right for the people – but he does it his way. Truth and justice – the BLACK ADAM way. This role is unlike any other I’ve ever played in my career and I’m grateful to the bone we’ll all go on this journey together. BLACK ADAM 12.22.21 ⚡️ Huge thank you to my friends, @jimlee and @bosslogic for this first time ever bad ass collaboration.
Randolph also ran with the scoop J.J. Abrams is having conversations with WB since signing his first-look deal. Variety confirms these are taking place and DC is on the table. Abrams had an opportunity at a Superman movie over a decade ago that fell through and he might get another crack at it.
It might be #DCEU movie, it might be a stand alone “Elseworlds” style movie – basically whatever will get him to do it.
— Grace Randolph (@GraceRandolph) September 19, 2019
Another character he could wind up with, as reported, is Green Lantern. Geoff Johns is moving forward with his Green Lantern Corps script and Abrams may produce the film after it is turned in.
Some outlets (including ourselves) speculate there is a Justice League movie in it for Abrams down the line too.
Variety referenced as well Johns’ developing Green Lantern series for HBO Max co-produced by Greg Berlanti and what their partnership could mean for the Corps’ feature:
“There’s speculation that relationship could lead to his [Berlanti’s] involvement in a feature film.”
Berlanti produced and co-wrote the story for the 2011 Green Lantern movie. Given its reputation, I’m not holding my breath for him to obtain a chance at another one.
Where do you stand on a Michael B. Jordan Superman or a DC film directed by JJ Abrams? Leave a comment.