With prodcution currently underway in Atlanta, The CW has released the first look at Hart of Dixie alum Cress Williams as Black Lightning, the latest DC Comics character to get his own TV series produced by Greg Berlanti (Arrow, The Flash).
Black Lightning stars Cress Williams (Hart of Dixie) as Jefferson Pierce/Black Lightning.
The costume for Black Lightning was designed by Laura Jean Shannon, whose many film and television credits include the upcoming Jumanji sequel, The Jungle Book, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Blade: Trinity, Good Girls Revolt and Iron Man, for which she was nominated for a Costume Designers Guild Award.
It incorporates elements of the classic comic book look, along with the leather-and-armor aesthetic common to The CW's DC Universe shows and high-tech elements that appear to be microcircuitry a la Batman Beyond.
“I knew way too much about the world as a young boy growing up in Richmond, California. I was no stranger to violence, death, hopelessness or the feeling that no one cared about what was happening in my life,” said executive producer and writer Salim Akil, who will direct the pilot. “Comics were a great way for me to escape. I was about 13 when Black Lightning was created, and finally there was a Black Super Hero that gave a damn about our neighborhood and our lives. Resurrecting him at a time in our society when a sense of hope is lacking...Black Lightning will be that hope. And in updating the suit, it will signal to a new generation that it’s time to harness and release our power, and become our own Super Heroes.”
The first African-American DC Super Hero to have his own stand-alone comic title, Black Lightning is based on the character created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden in 1977. Jefferson Pierce made his choice: he hung up the suit and his secret identity years ago, but with one daughter hell-bent on justice and the other 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.
Greg Berlanti, Salim Akil, Mara Brock Akil and Sarah Schechter are executive producers of Black Lightning, from Berlanti Productions and Akil Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television. Salim Akil is directing the pilot from a script he wrote.
Jefferson Pierce 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.
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