The pilot for CW’s forthcoming adaptation of BLACK LIGHTNING has struck Nafessa Williams and China Anne McClain with key roles. The two will join Cress Williams who was recently announced as the star of the superhero pilot from DC TV maestro Greg Berlanti and written by Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil.
The character of Black Lightning (a.k.a. Jefferson Pierce) was created by Tony Isabella and Trevor Von Eeden. The pilot, which will be directed by Salim Akil follows Pierce who has since hung up his Black Lightning suit. Just when he thought his days as a costumed crime fighter are done, he finds out a star student is being courted by a local gang. With the influence of his civic-minded and outspoken daughter Jennifer (McClain), he gets pulled back into his vigilante ways. Williams is set to play Anissa Pierce, Jefferson’s twenty-something med-school daughter. In the comics, Anissa and Jennifer go on to be vigilantes themselves, appropriately adopting the superhero monikers Thunder and Lightning.
Berlanti will executive produce Black Lightning with Sarah Schechter under Berlanti Productions. The Akils will also executive produce under their Akil Productions shingle.
Williams recently appeared in the medical drama Code Black. She can be seen next in the Netflix feature Burning Sands and has a role in the highly anticipated Twin Peaks reboot at Showtime.
McClain is known for her role in A.N.T. Farm on the Disney Channel. She also starred in Tyler Perry’s House of Payne and can be seen in the forthcoming Descendants 2. On the big screen, she can be seen next in the crime drama Blood Brother and horror Ten.
Dino-Ray Ramos | Staff Writer