Zack Snyder has described the decision to cast a Black lead actor in the Superman reboot as “a bold and cool and probably long overdue move”.
Blockbuster filmmaker JJ Abrams is attached to produce the upcoming feature, and he’ll be collaborating with journalist and writer Ta-Nehisi Coates, who will pen the script having previously specialised in reporting and exploring issues facing the African-American community.
Currently, no director or actors are attached to the project, but Warner Bros will be casting a Black actor in the role of Superman, which would be a first in live-action – though the precedent has already been set in the comic books.
“My feeling is that I love JJ [Abrams], I love what he’s done in the past,” the Justice League director told RadioTimes.com and other press. “I’m interested to see what happens, it’s a bold and cool and probably long overdue move. But I love Henry [Cavill] as Superman, of course I do. He’s my superman.
“I’m not really involved in any of the decision-making at Warner Brothers in any way, so I guess for me it’s just wait and see what they do with this and how it manifests itself. But on the surface, it seems interesting.”
Henry Cavill has portrayed Superman in three movies since 2013 and will be seen once again in the experimental Zack Snyder’s Justice League on HBO Max, but it’s not known what this new casting could mean for him.
Snyder is behind Netflix’s upcoming zombie film Army of the Dead, which marks Man of Steel director’s return to cinema after 2017’s Justice League. It follows a group of mercenaries in Las Vegas who “take the ultimate gamble” by planning a heist during a zombie outbreak.
The cast includes Dave Bautista (Guardians of the Galaxy), Ella Purnell (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), Ana de la Reguera (Eastbound & Down), Garret Dillahunt (Raising Hope) and Omari Hardwick (Kick-Ass). Stand-up comic Tig Notaro has replaced Chris D’Elia in the cast.