The first official trailer for Aquaman finally premiered at San Diego Comic-Con over the weekend, and audiences now have a good look at Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as the villainous Black Manta. The character is arguably the most iconic bad guy in Arthur Curry's rogues gallery, but it sounds like the actor behind the baddie is ready for even more DC universe crossovers once James Wan's film hits theaters. During a recent interview at Comic-Con, The Get Down alum explained:
Well, yeah, I mean, this character, he's all over the canon. He's in Suicide Squad, we see him in the cartoons, we see him in Young Justice, we see him in... he's all over the place, in way that he can get to his means to an end. Right, if you see Aquaman in Justice League, then, you know, it'll make sense for Black Manta to say, 'Hey! What you doing?' Pop his head in, wherever he is, he can justify making it his business. I'm looking forward to living long within the DC world, and creat[ing] a little bit of chaos.
So, while Aquaman has only just released its first official trailer, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is already looking ahead to the other possible avenues to explore for Black Manta. There's quite a bit of potential for this villain to branch out into new directions and foster "a little bit of chaos" in other corners of the DC universe. If nothing else, this seems to show that the actor behind one of DC's coolest villains is most certainly thinking about longevity when it comes to his role in this superhero landscape, and it seems reasonable to assume that Black Manta may very well live to fight another day when the credits roll on Aquaman.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II's remarks to Collider at San Diego Comic-Con make even more sense when we look at all of the groundwork that DC has laid in recent years. As the actor noted in his comments, Black Manta has appeared in comic book runs of Suicide Squad over the years, and he has also appeared on shows like Young Justice. Moreover, he's also frequently portrayed as a member of the Legion of Doom a.k.a the Injustice League -- an organization that was teased at the end of Zack Snyder's Justice League. There are several different directions to take this character that doesn't merely rely on the Aquaman solo franchise, and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II seems interested in moving forward to explore all of these different angles.
No matter what happens with Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Black Manta, and the Aquaman franchise, we will keep you posted with more information related to the live-action DC world as new details are made available to us. Aquaman will hit theaters after this year on December 21, so make sure to check it out when it finally premieres!