If you've watched Marvel's Jessica Jones on Netflix, you must be shivering with anticipation for the release of Luke Cage on September 30. For those of you who haven't seen the second part of the four series set to culminate in The Defenders (the first one being Daredevil and the fourth one Iron Fist), I strongly recommend you get on that. You have one month.
And while there's not much we know about Mike Colter, the actor finally bringing Luke Cage to life, what we do know proves that he's fully deserved his solo series.
1. He's A Trained Actor
Colter studied acting, obtaining a Bachelor's in Theater from the University of South Carolina in 1999, followed by an acting MFA from the Rutgers University Mason Gross School of the Arts.
2. He's Got Little But Excellent Experience
While he hasn't featured in a huge number of films and TV shows, Colter's roles have been highly praised. His first film appearance was in Million Dollar Baby, and he's well known for his characters in The Good Wife and Ringer.
3. He'd Rather Play Intelligent Characters Than Hit The Gym
In an interview with Heed, he explained he didn't necessarily feel the need to relate to his characters, but always looked for a certain depth when picking his roles:
"I like for my characters to have a certain amount of intelligence. A natural ability to think, be a leader, and pulls their own weight. A smart character. He can have any financial background. He can have any upbringing. The only thing that I like to require of my characters is mental acuity."
He also explained that he'd always been trying to avoid being typecast as the tough guy:
"I like to work out but I knew that if I look 225 lbs., well you know visually it would put me in a certain category. I couldn’t see myself doing those kinds of roles."
4. He Was Initially Reluctant To Accept The Role Of Luke Cage
Not wanting to be that kind of muscle-man, Colter was initially quite reluctant to accept Marvel's offer. He also enjoys his anonymity and wasn't so sure about stepping into the world of superhero fandom. Eventually, the script for Jessica Jones convinced him, as Luke Cage was portrayed as much more than just a ripped dude punching through the bad guys.
5. Now He Feels A Huge Responsibility Toward His Character
One of the major aspects of Marvel's Luke Cage is that it's finally giving a live-action black superhero his own show. Set in Harlem, it's also deeply rooted in black culture, and Colter is very attached to doing this history justice. He told Wired that the more he met fans of Luke Cage, the more he realized how important the series was:
"They didn't have any other character they could relate to, an American black guy from the streets. That became important to me."
With such a dedication to his role, it seems like Marvel couldn't have picked a better actor to portray the hero for hire.
Are you excited for the release of Luke Cage?