The star of Creed 2 and Black Panther is bringing a recently published novel to the big screen.
Michael B. Jordan and Warner Bros. recently acquired the film rights to Marlon James’ fantasy novel Black Leopard, Red Wolf, which was published on February 5th.
The first in a planned series called the Dark Star trilogy, set against the backdrop of two warring kingdoms in an epic fantasy world, the novel follows a hunter named Tracker who has been hired to find a missing child. The story draws heavily from African history and mythology, with James jokingly describing the novel as an “African ‘Game of Thrones’”.
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Jordan will produce the film under his Outlier Society production label, which he founded in order to bring more diverse stories to the big screen.
It looks like another Tom Clancy film series is in the works with Michael B. Jordan to star as the classic Clancy hero, John Clark! This news comes after the positive release of the Amazon’s rebooted Jack Ryan series starring John Krasinski. According to Variety, Paramount Pictures picked up Jordan to play the titular hero while the company was developing two films based on Clancy’s novels Rainbow Six and Without Remorse. Clark was the main character in both novels and Without Remorse will be the first of the two films and will focus on Clark’s origin story.
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Akiva Goldsman will lead the films as the main producer while Jordan, Andre Nemec, and Josh Appelbaum will also produce. Paramount is still meeting with writers and directors for the first film to figure out the story for the new Clancy hero.
Jordan’s spy character, John Clark, is actually just as intriguing Krasinski’s Jack Ryan! In the novels, Clark, otherwise known as John Terrence Kelly, is an ex-Navy Seal that turns into a CIA operations officer. He appeared in 17 of Clancy’s novels, the first appearance being in The Cardinal of the Kremlin, and mainly served as a secondary character that assists Jack Ryan with the physical aspects of dangerous missions. Clancy finally moved Clark into the role of the main character in Without Remorse which centers on Clark’s backstory on how he first came to work for the CIA.
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Clark’s next main novel was Rainbow Six; this novel followed Clark’s new task force and their mission to protect the world from great threats of terrorism. In past films, Clark has been played by Willem Dafoe in Clear and Present Danger and Liev Schreiber in The Sum of All Fears. Paramount has been trying to get the adaptations of Without Remorse and Rainbow Six for years with famous actors such as Ryan Reynolds and Chris McQuarrie both considered at one time.
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According to Variety, Jordan is considered one of Hollywood’s biggest stars currently. His recent memorable roles as Adonis in Creed and Killmonger in Black Panther both support the evidence of his ability to stand out as a lead character. Jordan’s upcoming films include reprising his role as the boxer Adonis in Creed 2 and staring in Warner Bros.’ legal drama Just Mercy.
The two Clark films in development represent two-star roles for Jordan that are not comic-book related and in today’s entertainment industry sometimes it’s difficult to break out of the superhero movie mold. Since the Clark films are still in their early stages of development, no release date has been made, but it will be exciting to see how these films will turn out and how Jordan will approach John Clark as a character.