After his breakout big-screen role as Black Manta in Aquaman last year, moviegoers are going to see a lot more of Yahya Abdul-Mateen II coming up. The 33-year-old actor just wrapped production on the Jordan Peele-produced Candyman “spiritual sequel” and has been cast in Matrix 4, opposite Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss. Oh, and don’t forget about the Aquaman sequel in the works. Abdul-Mateen has this update about the return of his DC villain character:
Aquaman 2 is happening! It is happening, and we can look for that, I believe, in 2022. So I’m excited to be part of that. Black Manta will be back, and hopefully, he’ll be causing a lot more trouble than he did in the first one.
Did we ever doubt it wasn’t? Aquaman became the DC Extended Universe’s biggest worldwide hit to date, making $1.1 billion at the box office between its holiday season release and top of 2019. James Wan’s underwater epic dazzled audiences with its cutting-edge visuals, all-star cast, including Jason Momoa’s fantastic take on Arthur Curry. However, it looks like we’ll need to wait three years to see the sequel.
In between King Orm’s plot to rid the world of land people, Yahya Abdul-Mateen’s character of David Kane/Black Manta shined with his own origin story. The beginning of the movie sets up Kane’s motivations against Aquaman, since he leaves him helpless to watch his father die following their pirating of a submarine. Kane then teams up with Orm, recieving Atlantean technology that allows him to build the iconic Black Manta suit and come up against Arthur on land.
An end-credits scene teases Black Manta’s prevalence in Aquaman 2, along with Randall Park’s Dr. Stephen Shin. The villain and Atlantean conspiracy nut meet one another shortly after its revealed Kane has survived his fight in Italy with Aquaman. The first movie perfectly sets up for the two to work together and become the main antagonists of the next installment, as Abdul-Mateen explained to Uproxx.
2022 seems far away but the DCEU has a nice lineup for fans to get excited for ahead of Aquaman’s intended December release. In February 2020, Harley Quinn will fly with the Birds of Prey against Ewan McGregor’s Black Mask. Gal Gadot’s Diana Prince will return to the big screen in June 2020 in Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman 1984.
Then in June 2021, Matt Reeves’ The Batman will debut starring Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne, Zoe Kravitz’s Catwoman and Jeffrey Wright’s Commissioner Gordon. July 2021 bring together James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad starring a mix of cast members from the 2016 movie and new ones.
Jason Momoa has previously said the Aquaman story is already locked. The second movie is expected to come December 16, 2022!