Marvel apparently has Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in mind to play the titular hero of the original series Wonder Man, which is set for Disney+.
A report from ScreenGeek cites a casting grid recently obtained from Wonder Man that lists Abdul-Mateen II as one of three leads for the developing project. The grid states that he and Marvel are in talks to play Simon Williams, an actor and Wonder Man’s alter-ego. The other lead roles being discussed for Wonder Man are for an unspecified female lead and for Simon Williams’ manager. Nothing has been finalized regarding casting. As genre fans know, Abdul-Mateen II previously appeared in the DC Extended Universe as Manta/Black Manta in the 2018 movie, Aquaman. He is also set to reprise that role for the upcoming sequel, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which is set for a Christmas Day release in 2023.
Abdul-Mateen II also happens to be an award-winning actor who made his film debut in the 2017 mystery drama, The Vanishing of Sidney Hall. He also starred as Bobby Seale in the 2020 Netflix film, The Trial of the Chicago 7, and took on the iconic role of Morpheus in the 2021 action movie, The Matrix Resurrections. At the 2020 Primetime Emmy Awards, he won the award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for the TV miniseries, Watchmen. His most recent role was as Will Sharp in the Michael Bay-directed action thriller, Ambulance, which was released in North America in April 2022.
Wonder Man is a character that first appeared in Marvel Comics in 1964, debuting in The Avengers #9. Initially, the character was an antagonist who regularly fought the Avengers team. He would eventually transform into a superhero in his own right, and joined forces with his former opponents, later co-founding the West Coast Avengers. While aligned with the West Coast Avengers, Simon Williams became a successful Hollywood stuntman and actor.
Wonder Man’s Creative Ace in the MCU Hole
The Wonder Man live-action series was announced in June 2022, setting up the character’s debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The series have Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings director Destin Daniel Cretton overseeing things as executive producer. Cretton will direct a few of the show’s episodes as well. Meanwhile, Andrew Guest, who scribed popular TV shows like Community and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, will be the head writer for the Disney+ show. Of course, he is also set to direct the upcoming megamovie Avengers: The Kang Dynasty, cementing his importance as an MCU visionary.
Production for Wonder Man is in its early stages, with the expectation that filming will start in 2023. No tentative release date has been set for the series.
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