Fans of the villainous Black Manta shouldn’t be worried about him being a one-and-done villain in Aquaman. It sounds like DC and Warner Bros. are planning on keeping the character around for a little while. Cinema Blend spoke to producer Peter Safran, who made it sound like they were planning on keeping not only Black Manta around, but also Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, the actor playing the part.
We certainly have every intention that Manta plays a very large role in the DC universe. He has to. He’s just too great. And we give him his origin story in this movie. We do show how Manta, that we see in the comic books, became that character. And we’re so fortunate to have this guy, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, to play him. I don’t know if you guys saw The Get Down on Netflix, this guy Yahya is just extraordinary, and he came in and he auditioned and we met with him and it was just a slam dunk.
Safran went on to talk about how much the team loves the character of Manta and how the fan reaction whenever he’s brought up really helped confirm that they want him to play a bigger role.
We love Manta. From the early days of developing the screenplay he’s just such a great antagonist and he’s such a fan favorite, and the response every time people hear that he’s in the movie or that it’s confirmed that he’s in the movie they’re thrilled about it. So we always wanted to give him his storyline, and if Orm is the primary antagonist, then Manta is certainly is a very strong secondary antagonist. There is a connection between Orm and Manta that will be revealed that helps make him a more integral part of the story.
So no worries for fans thinking that this would be the only time we’d see Black Manta — though this does mean that we pretty much know he survives the movie. That’s not a bad thing, though, since comic book movies tend to have a lot of one-and-done villains, and it’ll be nice to have a reoccurring one in the DCEU.
Summary: Arthur Curry learns that he is the heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, and must step forward to lead his people and to be a hero to the world.
Aquaman is directed by James Wan, stars Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman, Patrick Wilson, Willem Dafoe, and will hit theaters on December 21st.