Two of Hollywood’s most desirable stars are looking to get involved with Marvel’s Black Panther flick with a release date moved up to February 16, 2018. Lupita Nyong’o is discussing her role, while Michael B. Jordan has also signed on to join the cast. The movie will center on Black Panter, a superhero who rose to prominence in the 1960s comic books as arguably the first mainstream Black character in the medium.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Jordan – whose role has not yet been determined – will reunite with Creed director Ryan Coogler. Jordan also worked with Coogler for 2013’s Fruitvale Station. The director will also write the script for the film, which is due to begin shooting in early 2017.
The movie, starring Chadwick Boseman in the titular role, will center on Black Panther’s alter ego, T’Challa, who is the prince of the fictional African nation Wakanda. It is set to follow up this year’s Captain America: Civil War, which has grossed $700 million worldwide since opening in the U.S. May 6.
For Nyong’o’s part, The Grio reports the Broadway actress is in talks to play a love interest for T’Challa. Her exact role has not been revealed.
Ahead of Civil War‘s premiere, most of the attention on the film focused on the Black superhero character. Atlanta Black Star reports acclaimed author Ta-Nehisi Coates is writing a new Black Panther comic series based on the superhero coping with an uprising in his city.
The excitement of the castings for Black Panther encouraged Boseman fan account @to create the hashtag #BlackPantherSoLIT. Other users have used it to show their excitement for the upcoming release.
— Black Girl Nerds (@BlackGirlNerds) May 14, 2016
— T'Challa-rive Due (@TananariveDue) May 14, 2016
— Vann R. Newkirk II (@fivefifths) May 14, 2016
Director Ava DuVernay passed on directing the film due to “too much compromise,” according to Entertainment Weekly, but she said she still plans on seeing Black Panther. She tweeted her support using the hashtag last week. DuVernay mentioned she texted Coogler and said she “cannot wait” for the premiere.
— Ava DuVernay (@AVAETC) May 14, 2016