The CW's 'Black Lightning' Casts Cress Williams in Lead Role

Friday, 24 February 2017 - 8:15PM
DC Comics
Black Lightning
Friday, 24 February 2017 - 8:15PM
The CW's 'Black Lightning' Casts Cress Williams in Lead Role
DC / The CW
Black Lightning, the latest show to join the CW's growing network of superhero fare, is finally moving forward after some delays with the pilot (it was originally dropped by Fox, only for the CW to grab it up the very next day). And they've cast CW alum Cress Williams in the lead role as the electrical Jefferson Pierce.

Williams co-starred as Mayor Lavon Hayes throughout the CW's comedy-drama Hart of Dixie, which was an entirely different type of CW show than Black Lightning will likely be. He also appeared on Friday Night Lights, Veronica Mars, and Prison Break.

No one else has yet been cast, but Greg Berlanti will produce and the married duo of Mara Brock and Salim Akil will co-write. Beyond just Williams, Berlanti also has quite a bit of experience with the CW, having produced Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow, and some non-superhero shows like Riverdale. Out of that long list, this will be the network's first show starring a black superhero, adding some much-needed diversity to the "Arrow-verse."

The pilot's synopsis suggests that the show will follow the origin story of Black Lightning pretty faithfully. In his modern comics origin, Pierce is a former Olympic athlete who returns to his troubled childhood neighborhood (in Metropolis) to become a high school principal, who's pushed into using his secret electrical superpowers after gang violence claims one of his students. Here's the official synopsis:
Opening quote
He made his choice: he hung up the suit and his secret identity years ago, but with a daughter hell-bent on justice and a star student being recruited by a local gang, he'll be pulled back into the fight as the wanted vigilante and DC legend, Black Lightning.
Closing quote


Unlike most of the other superheroes on the network, Black Lightning is an older character who typically has kids by the time his story begins (starting with Black Lightning #1 in 1977) . And since Williams, at 46, is a bit older than other stars like Stephen Amell and Melissa Benoist (who are all in their twenties or thirties), that looks like it'll carry over here.

Via: ComingSoon
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