Academy Award winner Mahershala Ali ("Luke Cage") has revealed he will play two roles in “Alita: Battle Angel,” the upcoming dystopian science-fiction film produced by James Cameron and directed by Robert Rodriguez. Ali is already confirmed to play a character named Vector in the film, but nothing else is known about his newly revealed second role.
News of Ali’s second role in “Alita” first broke last night at the Academy Awards after the actor accepted his award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role in “Moonlight.” In between questions about “Moonlight,” which won the award for Best Picture, Ali briefly touched on “Alita.”
"I’m really excited about that,” said Ali, per a report from Movie Pilot. “I actually play two parts in that film. That was a blast. I literally wrapped that maybe two weeks ago."
Ali won Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his portrayal of drug dealer and mentor Juan in “Moonlight.” Prior to that, he took on the critically acclaimed role of the conflicted villain Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes in Netflix’s “Luke Cage.”
“Alita: Battle Angel” is an adaptation of Yukito Kishiro's manga “Battle Angel Alita,” in which a scientist uncovers and repairs the discarded body of a cyborg girl, only to find that the girl is a practitioner of advanced cyborg martial arts. Ali is confirmed to play Vector in the film, a character who, in the manga, is the foremost illegal body parts broker.
Debuting in theaters July 20, 2018, “Alita: Battle Angel” is a production of Lightstorm Entertainment directed by Robert Rodriguez and starring Rosa Salazar as Alita, Christoph Waltz as Dr. Dyson Ido, Ed Skrein as Zapan, Michelle Rodriguez as Gelda and Mahershala Ali as Vector.