Is ‘Black Panther’ Star Michael B. Jordan The Next Superman?

Michael B. Jordan has shown himself to have an amazing range of acting abilities. Equally at ease in roles that pack an emotional punch, like 2013’s Fruitvale Station, or roles that simply pack a literal punch, like 2015’s Creed, Jordan is a versatile actor who consistently thrills audiences. 

That’s why many have been speculating that Jordan could play the larger-than-life role of Superman in a new (but unannounced) version of the DC hero’s journey out of Warner Brothers studios. Recently, Jordan weighed in on those rumors himself, providing a little more insight into whether we should expect to see him wearing that sacred “S” anytime soon. 

Michael B. Jordan got his start in television roles 

Long before Jordan was at the center of rampant internet speculation about his future (or his love life), he was a child actor breaking onto the scene with some extremely dramatic and heavy roles.

His first major breakout role was in David Simon’s critically-acclaimed HBO series The Wire. He appeared as Wallace in the first season of the series, providing a heartbreaking portrayal of a young teen caught up in Baltimore’s drug wars. 

Jordan went on to a long-lasting recurring role in All My Children from 2003-2006, playing a young gang member who was adopted by one of the series’ regulars. Interestingly, Jordan was not the first person to portray this character on the screen. That honor would go to Jordan’s fellow Black Panther star, Chadwick Boseman.

He had a few small television parts after the soap opera before landing the role as Vince Howard in Friday Night Lights from 2009-2011. He also played Alex from 2010-2011 on the hit drama series Parenthood

Michael B. Jordan made the difficult leap into films with grace and style

Transitioning from television to film is not always easy for an actor, but Jordan made the leap with apparent ease. Perhaps it was his reputation for playing emotionally-charged and heartfelt roles, but he was soon getting cast in leads for films.

His 2013 portrayal of real-life Oscar Grant in Fruitvale Station garnered a sea of award nominations and wins, including several Best Actor nominations for Jordan. In 2015, Jordan would stretch his acting muscles and take on a new kind of role in the Fantastic Four by playing the Human Torch, Johnny Storm.

This new foray into the superhero world helped lay the groundwork for what is Jordan’s arguably most famous role to date: the complex supervillain Killmonger from Marvel’s Black Panther. Audiences were thrilled by Jordan’s nuanced and impressive portrayal of such an interesting and sympathetic character.

Perhaps that is why so many fans would love to see him tackle the role of Superman in a future film. 

The Superman rumors have been swirling for months

Michael B. Jordan attends the photocall for "Farenheit 451" during the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival.
Michael B. Jordan | Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

In 2018, rumors began swirling that Henry Cavill — who has been portraying Superman in the Warner Brothers franchise since 2013’s Man of Steel — would no longer be taking on the role. While the state of his relationship with the comic book-inspired series is still up in the air, his success in The Witcher suggests he’s going to be tied up for the foreseeable future. 

In the meantime, fans have been quick to point out Jordan as a possible replacement. He’s impressively demonstrated his ability to portray characters of strength, power, and complex psychology, and his well-documented history of putting his love for nerd culture out there would make him well suited to portray Clark Kent as well.

Could Warner Brothers have a deal in the works with the actor? 

Recently, Jordan addressed the rumors head-on. He did not quite rule out the possibility, but he certainly did not leave fans with the impression that they should expect to see him in the Man of Steel’s tights anytime soon. 

“I’ve been rumored to play Morpheus to Superman to Power Rangers and everything in between, so it’s like, I’m kind of used to the rumors I’m playing something,” he explained. “But anything that I do dive into has to be done the right way. It has to be full of authenticity.”

Will Jordan authentically throw himself into this amazing role in the future? Only time will tell, but it’s nearly guaranteed that whatever he does next will have audiences on the edge of their seats once more.