Category: Television

Press/Video: gen:LOCK action footage teases Michael B. Jordan-starring show

We already knew that the upcoming animated sci-fi show gen:LOCK will sound good, thanks to a voice cast which includes Michael B. Jordan, Maisie Williams, Dakota Fanning, David Tennant, and Asia Kate Dillon. Now, some just-released footage gives us a taste of the show’s action, which premieres on Rooster Teeth, Jan. 26, 2019.

gen:LOCK is about a team of young pilots tasked with controlling the next generation of giant, weaponized robot bodies known as mecha. The show costars Kōichi Yamadera, Lindsay Jones, Miles Luna, Chad James, Blaine Gibson, Gray G. Haddock, Monica Rial, and Golshifteh Farahani.

Check out the new footage above.

Press/Video: Michael B. Jordan Says ‘Black Panther’ Gave ‘Everybody a Sense of Pride’

Since its February release, “Black Panther” has become a global phenomenon, but star Michael B. Jordan (who played villain Erik Killmonger) says he didn’t foresee just how big of a cultural impact the film would make.

“It was truly incredible. While we were making it, you didn’t really realize it. And then in hindsight, it’s like, ‘Yeah, we kind of did that,” Jordan tells Charlize Theron during Variety’s Actors on Actors series.

He says “the memes and the social media element” that “Black Panther” inspired helped him see that the film had resonated with the current generation. He also says he saw plenty of little Killmongers “with the permanent marker beards” and young girls dressed up as Dora Milaje, Wakanda’s all-female special forces in the movie.

But Jordan says what was most meaningful was seeing communities rally to support the film. Church groups, community centers, Boys and Girls Clubs, and organizations helping at-risk youth all rallied to host “Black Panther” screenings. Critics and audiences alike applauded the film for black representation and its homages to different African cultures, like the Maasai in Kenya and the Zulu from South Africa.

“Seeing the journalists come in the traditional garbs, and hearing stories about how this movie encouraged them to get back in contact with their roots and where they come from,” Jordan says, “it gave everybody a sense of pride. And I was like, ‘Wow, this movie is global.’”

Jordan, who most recently starred in “Creed II,” also says anybody can relate to “Black Panther,” regardless of their background.

“It’s not just the African experience. That’s what it’s framed in, but it gives everybody else access to that same type of self-discovery,” he says. “And that’s when I really started to realize the impact that it was going to have.”

Source: Variety

Press/Video: Hollywood Star Michael B Jordan Bulked Up for His Return in Creed II | Lorraine

Michael B Jordan is continuing the Rocky legacy, reprising his role as Adonis in Creed II, but he says he felt the need to up his game. Michael is in the best shape of his life, going up against his new nemesis he wanted to make sure the fight looked realistic with both men on a similar physical playing field. Broadcast on 30/11/2018

Press/Video: ‘The Graham Norton Show’ Video Playlist

Michael recently appeared on The Graham Norton Show. Check out the playlist of video clips from the show above.

Press: Michael B. Jordan Plays With Puppies While Answering Fan Questions

Michael B. Jordan (“Creed II”, “Black Panther”, “Friday Night Lights”) stops by to answer your questions about his career, workouts, and favorite anime – all with the help of some very furry friends. To learn more about these pups and others that are up for adoption, head to PacificPupsRescue.com

Press: Why Michael B. Jordan Is More Than a Movie Star

Press: Why Michael B. Jordan Is More Than a Movie Star

This piece contains mild spoilers for “Creed II.”

In the third act of “Creed II,” the heavyweight champ Adonis Creed squares off in a rematch against Viktor Drago, the Ukraine-based boxer and son of the man who killed Adonis’s father in the ring three decades earlier. Bloodied and weary after several rounds — but ever the tenacious fighter — Adonis gathers the will to keep going with the encouragement of his coach and mentor, Rocky Balboa.

“I’m dangerous!” Adonis sputters through his swollen mouth, echoing the pronouncement he had given Rocky in an earlier scene, under vastly different circumstances.

It is the movie’s “Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose,” the inspirational battle cry of the protagonist as he faces the challenge of his life. As said by the actor Michael B. Jordan, who delivers the line not with a guttural oomph but the eager-to-please fervor of a young kid hoping to impress his father, it doesn’t quite carry the intimidation the line seems to demand. Nevertheless, it is both endearing and invigorating — you just know Adonis is ready to conquer Viktor this time around.

It’s this moment that may help explain why, in the same year Jordan has received some of the most glowing reviews of his career for playing Killmonger in “Black Panther,” a debate has percolated on Reddit, Twitter and in everyday conversations among pop culture enthusiasts: Is Michael B. Jordan a good actor?

Where some see a fascinating interpretation of a supervillain, others see bad acting. Critics of Jordan say that he lacks the swagger and menace of the Killmonger character and that he appears to be reading off cue cards. (One of the movie’s most-discussed lines, “Just bury me in the ocean, with my ancestors that jumped from the ships — they knew death was better than bondage,” is usually held up as the prime example.) To some extent, I can understand these sentiments; like Adonis declaring himself “dangerous,” the idea of what Killmonger represents — a problematic, burn-it-all-down philosophy in the name of black empowerment — sometimes overpowers Jordan’s interpretation onscreen.

Still, the arguments made against his acting abilities more generally are perplexing: He doesn’t disappear into his roles (as Jamie Foxx did in “Ray”); he always plays the same character. Such critiques miss the point: Jordan has made it clear he desires to be a capital “M” Movie Star, along the lines of Will Smith (who himself has always been transparent about his box-office aspirations), not a character actor. “I want people to see me win,” he told The New York Times in a conversation alongside Denzel Washington earlier this year, adding, “I want to be the leading man.”

And there always have been actors who are considered great who aren’t chameleons like Christian Bale or Meryl Streep — you never forget you’re watching Denzel Washington, Leonardo DiCaprio or Cary Grant, but you are drawn in nonetheless.

Jordan’s strengths as an actor lie not in his ability to shock or scare or surprise — but in his willingness to be vulnerable and charismatic. These qualities have been evident as far back as his early breakthrough role as Wallace, a bright, baby-faced drug dealer in “The Wire.” Over the course of Season 1, Wallace looks after some of the younger abandoned children in the housing projects and experiences pangs of extreme guilt when his actions inadvertently lead to a murder. Jordan lent the character openness and sensitivity: He embodies the good-hearted kid who isn’t cut out for the ruthlessness of the drug trade, making his death at the hands of his childhood friends — and his pleas to them in those final moments — that much more heartbreaking.

In “Fruitvale Station” more than a decade later, his first major star turn and first collaboration with the director Ryan Coogler, Jordan portrayed Oscar Grant III, a young man who was killed by a police officer in Oakland, Calif., without painting him as a saint.

In one scene, we see Oscar interact with three people over the course of just a couple of minutes, and his demeanor shifts seamlessly between each exchange. He pleads with the manager of the grocery store where he once worked to rehire him, but quickly turns angry and combative when rebuffed, revealing Oscar’s desperation under dire financial straits. Left alone in the aisle, the camera lingers briefly on Oscar, contemplating the severity of his situation, before the voice of a woman he assisted earlier breaks through to thank him for his help; here he effortlessly turns on the charm. Finally, he greets his friend working the deli counter with a warm, genial familiarity, and lies about having convinced the manager to give him his job back.

As he finally exits the store and turns away from his friend, his smile fades, and a sense of helplessness washes over his face. These are subtle exchanges, but engrossing nonetheless — a brilliant, succinct depiction of everyday code switching, and it works mainly because Jordan carries it off so well.

“Creed II” takes the idiosyncrasies Jordan has honed in his onscreen persona throughout the course of his career and fully reveals the kind of actor he is capable of becoming. If not as surprisingly profound as its immediate predecessor, “Creed,” the latest “Rocky” installment portrays Adonis as an underdog despite being a heavyweight champ, a celebrated fighter who still has much to prove. He’s handsome and lovable, but not necessarily smooth, as seen in a lighthearted moment where Adonis nervously asks Bianca to marry him. He feels unsatisfied by his success.

In “Creed II,” Jordan shows how he can translate an array of emotions with just a look. When Adonis and Bianca await the results of a test for their newborn daughter, Jordan displays anxiety, fear and an overwhelming sense of sadness at the recognition of what may be ahead for his family.

Giving such a performance in a crowd-pleasing sequel positions Jordan in the realm of other actors he has name-checked as having the careers he wishes to emulate: Washington, Smith, Tom Cruise and Leonardo DiCaprio. You can see a bit of each of those actors in Jordan’s career moves so far — the transition from troubled youth roles into hunky A-lister (DiCaprio in “The Basketball Diaries,” and later “Titanic” and “The Departed”); the prestigious boxing part requiring tremendous physical transformation (Washington in “The Hurricane” and Smith in “Ali”); ventures into the realm of sci-fi/fantasy (Cruise in “War of the Worlds,” “Minority Report”).

It’s rare these days for actors to open movies on the strength of their names and charming personas alone, but in developing a respected partnership with Coogler — like Washington and Spike Lee, and DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese — and starting his own production company to create the roles he wants, Jordan has molded himself into a performer who takes on prestigious projects that also play up his good looks.

Whether this leads down the path of Oscar nods — still Hollywood’s ultimate marker of having made it, however superficially — remains to be seen. But when he taps into his sensitivity, turns on the charm and lays his feelings bare in any given moment, he’s electrifying.

Source: NY Times

Press/Video: How Michael B. Jordan is changing the game in front of and behind the camera

Michael B. Jordan has had an epic year.

After a stellar turn as the savage, yet relatable, Killmonger in the smash hit “Black Panther,” the 31-year-old actor will star in the highly anticipated “Creed 2,” which is out next week.

But the man’s work doesn’t stop after the cameras stop rolling.

Jordan has been earmarking and picking out the right combination of projects that he wants to create for his company, Outlier Society Productions.

His company is also joining the push for diversity in Hollywood by adopting a contractual clause, or inclusion rider, that pushes for inclusive casts and crews. And boy does he have some diverse offerings coming down the pike, including a Netflix series about a single black mother raising a superhero and a show on Oprah’s OWN network.

Jordan spoke to “Good Morning America” as part of a charitable campaign with Honey Nut Cheerios called Good Rewards.

He’s competing against Lucy Hale and Rob Gronkowski to try to win $100,000 to donate to his charity, Feeding America. With a munificent past that includes managing food banks, Jordan said he obviously “had a personal connection to Feeding America” and “saw the importance of giving back to the community and people who are less fortunate.”

When he’s not competing against a Super Bowl champion trying to get votes for charity, Jordan is producing projects like “Raising Dion,” a viral comic that’s currently being adapted into a series for Netflix, set to debut next year.

“It’s about a single black mom raising her son with superpowers,” he said. “I feel like moms are superheroes anyway, and they don’t get enough credit.”

He’s also ushering in a show called “David Makes Man,” which he’s doing along with “Moonlight” co-writer Tarell Alvin McCraney.

According to Deadline, this series focuses on “a 14-year-old prodigy from the projects who is haunted by the death of his closest friend.”
(MORE: Michael B. Jordan opens up about sharing a name with an NBA legend and dishes on new movie ‘Fahrenheit 451’)

“So, we got the queen, Oprah herself, shepherding that too,” Jordan said. “I also have a couple animation projects I’m doing because I love animation, and a couple movies coming down the pipe, some that I’m in, some that I’m not.”

He said that the company isn’t about creating vehicles for just himself, but “really about creating opportunities for other people … it’s called outlier for a reason.”

And while he loves producing and putting fresh artistic endeavors into the world, he can’t fight the acting bug. He may have checked off a lot of his dream roles in a short time, but he humored “GMA” with what’s still on the top of his list.

“I want to do, like, the voice of an animated movie, because I love animation, and I want to do a Jason Bourne-James Bond thriller, action-type joint,” he said.

Could he compel Matt Damon to bring back his famous former assassin-turned-protagonist?

“Matt is a buddy of mine — he’s also a big supporter of inclusion riders — he and Ben are great actors and fine gentlemen,” he said. “To be able to work with him on something would be epic.”

And then there was the wave of fans and creators who, earlier this year, urged studios to consider Jordan to be the next Superman if Henry Cavill was indeed done with the famed role. This opportunity has Jordan giddy, even if it’s a longshot.

“Just being a fan of comic books, loving fantasy … to be in the mix of a character that I used to watch all the time, it’s pretty cool,” he admitted. “It’s cool to be a part of the conversation no matter where it goes, how false, what happens, how crazy it is. It’s just cool to be talked about in that type of way.”

Source: Good Morning America

Press: Now Casting: Netflix’s ‘Raising Dion’ Starring Michael B. Jordan Needs Basketball Players

Press: Now Casting: Netflix’s ‘Raising Dion’ Starring Michael B. Jordan Needs Basketball Players

In today’s casting roundup, the upcoming Netflix superhero series “Raising Dion,” starring Michael B. Jordan, is looking for real high school basketball players of all genders for background roles. Plus, the Broadway production of the Tony-winning musical “Kinky Boots” is casting ensemble singers, a short is seeking actors and crew, and a noir caper is casting its proof of concept.

“RAISING DION”
Join the upcoming Netflix series “Raising Dion,” starring Jason Ritter and Michael B. Jordan. High school basketball players, aged 15–21, are wanted for background roles in the series, which will follow a widowed single mom who discovers her son has superpowers and must figure out how to raise him responsibly. The series will shoot from Sept. 10–14 in Atlanta, Georgia. Pay is $75 for eight hours of work. Apply here!

Source: Backstage