During an interview with Flicks and the City — which you can see embed below — Tyler James Williams (The Walking Dead, Everybody Hates Chris) was discussing the possibility of taking on the role of a comic book character for the big screen. When asked who he might like to play, he answered “there aren’t many young, black comic book superheroes.”
Two people in the background — presumably crew members — shout out responses, naming the characters Static Shock and Spider-Man. It’s not the fact that they pointed out these characters, both of which are men of color in the comic books — Miles Morales becomes Spider-Man after Parker dies in the books. What’s most interesting is how Williams reacted to these comments.
“I don’t know… what you’re talking about,” he says with a mischievous smirk.
Then, he goes on to say “[…] yeah no, it’s great to see Static Shock is happening with Jaden.”
What Is Williams Talking About?
The “Jaden” Williams refers to is Will Smith’s son, Jaden Smith. You might know him from After Earth, The Pursuit of Happyness, or The Karate Kid remake (2010), among others.
He’s been rumored to play the role of Static Shock, for Warner Bros. — who has been developing the character with the producer of Django Unchained, Reginald Hudli.
Static Shock follows a hero named Static, and the series first appeared in 1993. Dwayne McDuffie, Robert L. Washington III, and John Paul Leon created the character for Milestone Media, or Milestone Comics — a relatively unknown imprint that operated under DC Comics for a short period.
The character was created to improve the representation of African-Americans in the comic world. High-schooler Virgil Ovid Hawkins is doused in an unknown experimental chemical during a gang war. This incident affords him unique, electromagnetic powers.
After, Milestone Media closed down Static was later incorporated into DC’s greater universe, and the character actually became one of the Teen Titans.
What About the Spider-Man Reference?
It’s clear that Williams was avoiding a discussion about his involvement one of the characters mentioned. This could mean one of two things: Either Williams is in talks to star in a future Spider-Man film or he might appear in Static Shock as a supporting character, perhaps a villain?
Take this with a grain of salt, of course. This is just me speculating on Williams’ comments during the interview, there’s a chance I could be way off base here.
What do you think?