Alfre Woodard is in talks to join the cast of Marvel’s upcoming Luke Cage series, to play what is being called a key role in Netflix’s latest Marvel series, which stars Mike Colter as the titular character.
Per Deadline, which first broke the news, Woodard will co-star as Minetta, a powerful woman in local politics who will have an impact on Luke Cage’s life and who may or may not be a version of the Marvel villain Black Mariah.
In the comic books, Black Mariah is a villain in the Black Panther universe – a drug racketeering 400 lbs. woman who crossed paths with Luke Cage. Black Mariah has no known superhuman abilities. She is said to be exceptionally strong considering her weight, and can kick your ass. Black Mariah is also knowledgeable in the use of firearms, and also possesses a pair of poison knitting needles.
Clearly, if Woodard’s Minetta is indeed a version of Black Mariah, she reads like an entirely different take on the character.
Cheo Hodari Coker will serve as executive producer and showrunner of the much-anticipated Netflix & Marvel Television series, “Marvel’s Luke Cage.”
Coker will also write the first 2 episodes of the series, which will premiere in 2016 on Netflix.
Before it premieres, the character will make his debut on the “Jessica Jones” Netflix/Marvel series which will come later on this year – all part of Netflix’s announced strategy that will see the streaming platform release a new Marvel superhero series every six months, each focusing on members of a group of comic book heroes called The Defenders – a kind of street-level Avengers team.
The first in the series, “Daredevil,” premiered earlier this year to rave reviews. Up next will be the “Jessica Jones” series, whose release is still currently undated. Although Chief Content Officer at Netflix, Ted Sarandos, shared at TCA last month that the streaming platform will debut “Jessica Jones” by the end of 2015, which is inline with its announced “every 6 months” release strategy. Given that “Daredevil” premiered in April, I’d look for “Jessica Jones” (and thus Luke Cage’s debut) during the last quarter of the year – some time in October through December.
And after “Jessica Jones,” Iron Fist and Luke Cage series will follow in 2016.
Each of the above 4 series will be supplemented by a “Defenders” series whose characters include all 4 characters: Daredevil, Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage. They will join forces in a combined “Defenders” season after each has been introduced with its own first season, which I’d assume will come in 2017 or 2018.