Get Down Star Offered Aquaman Villain Role

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II

The upcoming DC Comics superhero film "Aquaman" has found its villain. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that Yahya Abdul-Mateen II has been offered the role of Black Manta, the villain responsible for the death of Aquaman's father in the current comics continuity.

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THR notes that Warner Bros. has been narrowing down their list of Black Manta actors over the last few weeks and finally settled on Abdul-Mateen over the weekend. An offer has gone out to the actor, who also recently starred in the Baz Luhrmann Netflix series "The Get Down." Their report also notes that "Aquaman" will begin filming this April in Australia.

Black Manta was first rumored to be "Aquaman's" primary villain back in August 2016. The very next day, director James Wan commented on the rumor saying he, of course, couldn't talk about it. Well, now it looks like Wan will be able to talk about it.


Created for 1967’s “Aquaman” #35 by Bob Haney and Nick Cardy, Black Manta is famous for killing Arthur Curry Jr., Aquaman’s son, in classic DC Comics continuity. In the New 52, it was established that Aquaman killed Manta’s father when he was a boy. Manta was eventually imprisoned at Belle Reve Prison, and propositioned by Amanda Waller to join Task Force X (a.k.a. the Suicide Squad), ultimately turning down the offer. Apart from enhanced strength, Manta traditionally doesn’t have any superpowers.

Directed by James Wan and starring Jason Momoa (Aquaman), Amber Heard (Mera), Patrick Wilson (Orm) and Willem Dafoe (Nuidis Vulko), “Aquaman” swims into theaters on October 5, 2018.

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