Celebrated author and essayist Ta-Nehisi Coates is writing a new Superman film that will be produced by J.J. Abrams, Shadow and Act reports. The project has no release date or director attached yet, and there’s still no word on whether Henry Cavill will reprise his role. Shadow and Act suggests a search for a new actor to play Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman has yet to begin.
Coates is perhaps best known for his books Between the World and Me and The Beautiful Struggle, but he also has comics experience, writing popular runs on both Black Panther and Captain America. Coates is also working on several other in-development film and television projects, including a television series for HBO and a feature film adaption of a New Yorker article about Atlanta teachers, to be directed by Ryan Coogler and starring Michael B. Jordan.
It’s unknown at this point if this new Superman will be DC and Warner Media’s main version of the character going forward or more of an experimental side project like Joker and The Batman, but recasting the role opens up all sorts of exciting possibilities. Jordan himself reportedly met with Abrams about a new version of the character, which, given his work in Black Panther, could bode well for the new Man of Steel.
However things shake out, it seems like J.J. Abrams’ time as Warner Media producing guru (sealed to the tune of $250 million) is moving in some interesting directions: a Justice League Dark series, a new Superman, and a generally different future after years of Zack Snyder grimness.