Oscar winner Nicole Kidman and The Get Down‘s Yahya Abdul-Mateen II are in early talks to join James Wan’s AQUAMAN as the titular hero’s mother Atlanna and the villainous Black Manta, the Tracking Board has confirmed.
Jason Momoa is set to star as Aquaman alongside Amber Heard as his royal love interest Mera and Patrick Wilson as his villainous half-brother Orm. Willem Dafoe will co-star as Aquaman’s advisor, scientist Dr. Nuidis Vulko.
Aquaman will see the King of the Seven Seas and leader of Atlantis caught between a surface world constantly ravaging the sea and the Atlanteans, who are ready to lash out in revolt.
While Wonder Woman and Justice League will be the next two DCEU movies to hit theaters, Aquaman will be the next to start filming, with production expected to start in April in Kidman and Wan’s homeland of Australia.
Though Momoa has stood out in Justice League teasers, he has yet to prove he can carry a movie of this magnitude, which carries with it a nine-figure budget. There’s a lot of pressure on his sizable shoulders, and it’ll be up to the supporting cast to help him carry that weight.
Kidman has experience with superhero movies based on DC comics, as she previously played Bruce Wayne’s love interest in 1995’s Batman Forever. Wan has been keen to work with his fellow Australian, and she has apparently been his top choice for weeks. The actress received an Oscar nomination for her wonderful, warm performance in Lion, and she next stars in the HBO miniseries Big Little Lies. She’s represented by CAA, Shanahan Management and Media Talent Group.
Abdul-Mateen has been coming on strong since The Get Down debuted on Netflix, as he was also a finalist to play young Lando Calrissian in the Han Solo movie that just started shooting. The Gersh-repped actor will soon be seen in Baywatch alongside Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron.
The Hollywood Reporter broke the news of Kidman and Abdul-Mateen’s castings, while Variety added that the Get Down breakout beat out the likes of Trevante Rhodes (Moonlight) and Corey Hawkins (24: Legacy) for the coveted part of Black Manta.
Jeff Sneider | Editor in Chief