Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom Will Continue Black Manta’s Origin Story

Posted 2022/04/27 8 0

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The Warner Bros. panel for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom at this year’s CinemaCon has revealed that the film will profoundly feature the origin story of Black Manta. Yahya Abdul-Mateen II will reprise his role as David Kane/Black Manta from the previous movie. While the last film featured Manta as a secondary adversary, this time, the character will return more powerful and prepared to fight the new Atlantean king.

In Aquaman, David Kane took on the mantle of Black Manta after allying with Orm Marius to help him wage war against the surface in exchange for a tech powerful enough to fight Aquaman. Kane was portrayed as a mercenary whose father is killed by Aquaman after he thwarts the former’s mission to hijack a Russian submarine. Kane’s origins were tied to his vengeful quest to kill Aquaman at any cost, which resulted in him in being almost killed during his duel with the hero. However, the post-credits of the film revealed that he has survived and is being taken care of by Dr. Stephen Shin, who’s obsessed with Atlantean lore.

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In the new footage screened at CinemaCon under Warner Bros. DCEU panels (via ScreenRant), Black Manta is featured to be in possession of a large ship with far more dark energy, continuing to hunt down Aquaman. While the previous film featured the origin of David Kane’s vengeance and his first rodeo with the Manta suit, the sequel will probably see him transitioning into the true villainous Black Manta, similar to his comic book counterpart.

Though the footage wasn’t long enough to make anything out of it about the character’s arc in the film, the tease was a sufficient glimpse for the studio audience to get excited about the character’s return.

Black Manta Origins Were Coming Together Since The Beginning

Black Manta is a crucial character from the comics and has acted as a remarkable villain, equal in strength (thanks to his suit) and in strategy. In Aquaman, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II played the role with impressive perseverance and the character did get the due attention despite being there for a very few sequences. James Wan himself was interested in exploring the character further.
Earlier, a film titled The Trench was in active development at DC and Warner Bros., which at the time was believed to be a spin-off about the villainous Trench kingdom. However, the film was canceled and was later revealed to be a misdirection for a Black Manta project. This means James Wan was secretly considering to keep Black Manta’s origins continue in an adjacent film, but DC Films saw no fruit in the project.
Hopefully, in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, we’ll see more of the character’s journey and transition into the said villain. The film’s footage also saw Aquaman bringing in his brother Orm, free from imprisonment, to assist him in fighting Manta. Moreover, given film also has inspirations drawn from the Black Manta Silver Age comic issue, we can expect a hard-hitting action sequence, with Aquaman and Orm against Black Manta, this time probably in an underwater setting.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom is currently slated to release on March 17, 2023, after being pushed from its 2022 release in a full DC release slate’s shake-up.


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