Anthony Mackie and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II to deal with scary computers on Black Mirror’s new season 

Read on: The A.V. Club.

According to Deadline, Anthony Mackie from the Marvel movies and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II from a DC movie have joined the cast of Black Mirror’s upcoming new season. We don’t know anything about what characters they might play, what sort of stories they m…

‘Aquaman’ Actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II In Talks To Star In MGM/Jordan Peele’s ‘Candyman’ Sequel

Read on: Deadline.

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, last seen as Black Manta in the WB/DC Comics blockbuster film, Aquaman, is in talks to take on the lead role in the Candyman sequel from MGM and producers Jordan Peele, via his Monkeypaw Productions banner, and Win Rosenfeld. Nia…

‘Aquaman’ Star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in Talks to Lead Jordan Peele’s ‘Candyman’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is in talks to star in the title role of the upcoming “Candyman” sequel from Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions.

The retelling of the film is described as a “spiritual sequel” to the 1992 original, which was adapted from “The Forbidden,” Clive Barker’s short story.f “Candyman” returns to the now-gentrified section of Chicago where the Cabrini-Green Homes once stood

“Candyman” will be directed by Nia DaCosta (“Little Woods”), with Peele and Win Rosenfeld penning the screenplay. Production is set to begin in the spring.

Also Read: MGM to Partner With Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions for ‘Candyman’ Sequel

Abdul-Mateen’s breakout role came in Baz Luhrmann’ 2016 Netflix series “The Get Down.” He’s since had roles in “Baywatch” and “The Greatest Showman,” and most recently, he starred opposite Jason Momoa in “Aquaman.”

Abdul-Mateen will also appear in Jordan Peele’s “Get Out” directorial follow-up, “Us.”

“Candyman” is being produced in partnership with Monkeypaw and MGM, and will be distributed by Universal Pictures with a June 12, 2020 release date.

“The original was a landmark film for black representation in the horror genre,” Peele has said of the film. “Alongside ‘Night of the Living Dead,’ ‘Candyman’ was a major inspiration for me as a filmmaker — and to have a bold new talent like Nia at the helm of this project is truly exciting. We are honored to bring the next chapter in the ‘Candyman’ canon to life and eager to provide new audiences with an entry point to Clive Barker’s legend.”

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Ian Cooper will produce for Monkeypaw, while Adam Rosenberg, MGM’s co-president of production and Tabitha Shick, MGM’s vice president of production, will oversee the project on behalf of the studio.

Abdul-Mateen is repped by Gersh and Anonymous Content.

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Does ‘Aquaman’ Have a Post-Credits Scene?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“Aquaman” is the first DC Comics movie since the ill fated “Justice League” in 2017, and thus serves as sort of a soft reboot for the cinematic DC universe. It’s the polar opposite of the old Zack Snyder-driven DC Extended Universe, bringing an overwhelming color palette and fully embracing the weirdness of Aquaman’s world rather than trying to ground it in any way.

Up until “Justice League,” the DC Snyderverse was conspicuous for bucking the superhero movie trope of including a bonus scene after the credits to tease future movies or just have some fun (or both, as is the case with most Marvel movies). None of “Man of Steel,” “Batman V Superman” or “Wonder Woman” included a post-credits scene, but “Justice League” did — teasing a direction for the DC movies that may or may not ever happen.

In any case, the James Wan-directed “Aquaman” represents a new day for DC on the big screen. It’s a film that has no obligations to the way past DC movies worked, so whether its predecessors had post-credits scenes isn’t relevant to whether “Aquaman” has one.

Also Read: ‘Aquaman’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained

So let’s get down to it: Does “Aquaman” have any extra scenes after the credits you need to stick around for, or is it safe to head out once the credits roll if you need to?

The answer is yes, “Aquaman” has one extra scene, which comes mid-way through the credits. This mid-credits scene reveals the fate of Black Manta, and teases his future working alongside Randall Park’s alarmist pundit character, Dr. Shin, who made a brief appearance early in the film.

For more info on what all that means, you can check out our explainer here.

Also Read: Does ‘Aquaman’ Connect to 2017’s ‘Justice League’ or Just Ignore It?

That is the only extra scene in “Aquaman” — there’s just this scene in the middle of the credits, and nothing at the very end of the credits. So once you see the scene I described above, you’re all set. Though, of course, we do always encourage all moviegoers to stick around through the credits in appreciation for the many people responsible for bringing the film to life. But if you’ve gotta go, you can rest assured knowing there’s just the one extra scene, and no post-credits scene.

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‘Aquaman’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained

‘Aquaman’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Spoilers ahead for the mid-credits scene from “Aquaman.” You have been warned.)

So here we are, finally, getting the first new film based on a DC Comics property since the maligned “Justice League.” While “Aquaman” does acknowledge that the events of that movie happened, it really is actually kind of a soft reboot of this whole thing, just going its own way in its own style, otherwise totally divorced from the Zack Snyder era of DC movies.

That includes having a stinger mid-way through the credits that teases the next “Aquaman” film when the Snyder films and “Wonder Woman” famously eschewed the practice — though, of course, Joss Whedon’s revamped “Justice League” did have one, but it was hard to tell if that represented a change in standard practice for these movies.

We still don’t know for sure because two instances is not a pattern, but “Aquaman” does tease a potential sequel with a mid-credits scene that reveals the fate of Black Manta and introduces a new villain, Dr. Stephen Shin, played by Randall Park.

Also Read: Does ‘Aquaman’ Connect to 2017’s ‘Justice League’ or Just Ignore It?

When we last saw Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) in the film proper, he accidentally exploded his own helmet at the end of his battle with Aquaman (Jason Momoa) in Sicily. He fell into the ocean and floated along until he was found by a fishing boat — and on board that boat was Dr. Shin.

Manta gets a sort of briefing on Dr. Shin when he wakes up and sees him on TV being extremely alarmist about the crazy underwater battle from the climax of the film. The other folks on the talk show scoff at Shin’s rhetoric, but Shin insists he’s right, noting the intense seismic activity that the battle caused.

Once Manta wakes fully, Shin excitedly begins asking him about his Atlantean armor. Manta is happy to oblige, knowing that an alliance with Shin could mean another shot at revenge against Aquaman.

Also Read: How ‘Aquaman’ Director James Wan Created the Underwater World: Rigs, Wigs and Visual Effects

The inclusion of Dr. Shin here is fascinating, as he’s only a minor character in the comics having appeared in only 27 issues since his introduction in 2011. The comics version, like the movie Dr. Shin, is an expert on Atlantis who views the underwater civilization as a threat — though he isn’t one to take any kind of major direct action. He did, however, try to kill Aquaman once.

If Shin is teaming up with Black Manta, there’s a very good chance he’ll be getting a promotion of sorts in “Aquaman 2.” The fact that he’s played by someone like Randall Park means there’s a good chance that Dr. Shin will be the main big bad of the sequel.

That doesn’t mean Black Manta will take a backseat — Manta is one of Aquaman’s chief nemeses in the comics and will likely feature even more prominently in the sequel than he did in this one. Think a teamup between Shin and Manta, with Shin as the brains and Manta as the muscle.

But since the source material doesn’t give us much to go on about Dr. Shin, it’s tough to guess what he might do as the main antagonist of a movie. Which is actually pretty cool!

So that’s something to look forward to, should “Aquaman” do well enough over the holidays to warrant a sequel greenlight. Here’s hoping that if they do get one going that they’ll bring back James Wan to direct again.

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Does ‘Aquaman’ Connect to 2017’s ‘Justice League’ or Just Ignore It?

Does ‘Aquaman’ Connect to 2017’s ‘Justice League’ or Just Ignore It?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Some minor spoilers ahead for “Aquaman”)

With “Aquaman” finally hitting theaters, moviegoers are curious as to whether the latest big screen DC adventure actually connects to 2017’s “Justice League,” or if director James Wan and his team opted to pretend that whole thing never happened.

The question arises because “Aquaman” feels an awful lot like a new start for the DC Extended Universe after the troubled “Justice League,” which was the lowest earner of the recent DC lineup and was generally not well liked by critics or moviegoers. So it’s legit to wonder if “Aquaman” might want to make a clean break from the baggage that “Justice League” represents.

While you could certainly refer to “Aquaman” as a soft reboot for DC, it does not cut ties completely with what came before — while “Aquaman” works like an origin story for the superhero, the film does briefly acknowledge that the events of “Justice League” did happen.

In an early scene, Amber Heard’s Mera appears in Amnesty Bay — the cove in Maine where Arthur (Jason Momoa) was raised by his lighthouse-keeper father (Temuera Morrison). Mera appears to Arthur and his father as they both leave Terry’s Sunken Galleon, and warns Arthur about Orm’s plan to attack the surface world. Mera wants Arthur to come with her back to Atlantis to stop Orm, Arthur refuses, and Mera reminds Arthur that he saved Atlantis once before, from Steppenwolf. You know, that guy from “Justice League” who tried to turn the entire Earth into a molten wasteland.

Previously, in “Justice League” Arthur first ventured to Atlantis to fight Steppenwolf, who arrived there to take back the Atlantean Mother Box and attacked Mera. After Arthur and Mera clash with Steppenwolf, they lose the Atlantean Mother Box to Steppenwolf who takes off with it.

The connection between “Aquaman” and “Justice League” is not a clean one, however. Back in “Justice League,” Arthur is seen in the later stages of the movie sporting a proper Aquaman suit — a suit that is never acknowledged, much less seen, in the “Aquaman” film.

Also Read: How ‘Aquaman’ Director James Wan Created the Underwater World: Rigs, Wigs and Visual Effects

So, yeah, not a clean break from the past of the DC Extended Universe here, but it’s as close to one as James Wan and co. could get without omitting all mentions of “Justice League.”

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After decades of getting treated like a pop culture punchline, thanks almost entirely to “Super Friends” (with a little help from “Entourage”), Aquaman finally has his own feature film. It’s a weird and wonderful superhero adventure that strives — and almost succeeds — to be the most epic superhero movie ever made.

Directed by James Wan (“Furious 7”), “Aquaman” ventures from a neon, “Tron”-inspired Atlantis to ancient ruins straight out of “Indiana Jones,” and then into a nightmare realm of evil swarming fish monsters. It features gigantic battles between innocent crab people and bad guys riding armored sharks. At one point, a DayGlo rave octopus plays the drums while Aquaman fights for the throne of Atlantis in an underwater gladiator arena called “The Ring of Fire.”

To call this movie “big” is an understatement. “Aquaman” has damn near everything: Amber Heard wears a dress made out of domesticated jellyfish, Julie Andrews voices a Lovecraftian aquatic leviathan, Nicole Kidman eats a live goldfish (presumably fake), Willem Dafoe spins a trident so fast it creates an impenetrable saltwater shield.

Watch Video: ‘Aquaman’ Dons His Classic Outfit in Final Trailer

At the center of it all is Jason Momoa, who plays Aquaman (a.k.a. Arthur Curry) like a shirtless, beer-swilling underachiever. Ever since his mom, Princess Atlanna (Kidman), was executed for falling in love with a human and having a hybrid child, Arthur has deemed himself unworthy of just about anything. It took a whole “Justice League” movie to get him to start acting like a superhero, and it’ll take a whole “Aquaman” movie to make him finally accept his mantle as the King of Atlantis.

Until then, Arthur’s half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson) has the throne, and he’s using that power to assemble all of the undersea armies and to prepare a massive war against the surface-dwellers. In order to stop him, Arthur will have to team up with Mera (Heard), a princess from another kingdom, and find a fabled trident which, like Excalibur, can be wielded only by the one true king.

Also Read: ‘Aquaman’ Makes Huge Splash at Chinese Box Office With $93 Million Opening

Easier said than done. Their globe-trotting journey will take them from the depths of the ocean to the Saharan desert and beyond. It’s a simple plot, but it’s sturdy enough, and Wan hangs a heck of a lot of action and opulence on it. We’ve come a long way from the slow scuba-diving “thrills” of “Thunderball.” The underwater fights in “Aquaman” are fast, furious, and take advantage of unusual surroundings for gyroscopic choreography where warriors can twist in any direction on the fly and zoom at their opponents like a rocket.

“Aquaman” isn’t like most other superhero movies. Our hero doesn’t spend much time in a recognizable world. Instead, he explores fantastical domains that seem straight out of the imagination of Robert E. Howard, which sets the film firmly in a related, but separate literary tradition. Wan’s “Aquaman” is pulp, through and through, and it’s as broad and outlandish as you could possibly hope for.

The cast, mostly, seems to be on board with that aesthetic. Momoa knows he’s playing a dashing megahunk. His first scene features an introductory hair whip straight out of “Gilda.” Heard is playing the Dejah Thoris role, even more heroic and capable than our protagonist. Wilson seems to have stepped straight out of John Boorman’s “Excalibur,” and Dafoe… actually, Willem Dafoe looks like he got lost on his way to a “Life Aquatic” reunion. He might be a little too weird an actor to play the straightforward role he’s got, as the king’s vizier and Aquaman’s swimming instructor.

Watch Video: ‘Aquaman’ Jason Momoa Killed a Guy With a Trident on ‘The Tonight Show’

There are other moments in which “Aquaman,” for all the slack we’re willing to cut it, strains credulity. At one point, when our heroes arrive in Africa, the soundtrack plays a remix of Toto’s “Africa,” which might make your eyes might roll all the way into the next theater. Also, Mera is pretty talented with a woodwind instrument for a character who’s hardly ever left the ocean. And one of the villains, Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, “The Get Down”) receives a perfectly functional superweapon from King Orm and then gets his own montage as he transforms it into something infinitely more likely to make his own head explode, as if that somehow makes him look smarter or cooler.

Wan’s film pushes too far sometimes, but that’s because it’s pushing as hard as it can. “Aquaman” does nothing by halves, ultimately reaping the rewards and occasionally suffering some consequences. Those aren’t bugs, they’re features. Wan seems to be operating under the philosophy that sci-fi/fantasy should stretch the limits of the imagination, even at the cost of possibly looking ludicrous. How much you personally agree with that philosophy will probably have a lot to do with whether or not you like “Aquaman.”

But either way, you’re in for a spectacle. “Aquaman” has been designed with the IMAX aspect ratio in mind, and Wan knows how to fill that frame. The fantastical set designs are brimming with detail, and the scenes where Arthur and Mera are frantically swimming away from a horde of killer ichthyoid monstrosities play with negative space, creating a sense of overwhelming, beautiful hopelessness. It’s a world where anything can happen, and it always looks amazing when it does.

“Aquaman” is a sword-and-sorcery sci-fi archaeology horror war superhero epic without shame. But why would it have shame? James Wan dives into the strangest caverns of DC’s vast mythologies and brings it all to the big screen, challenging you to accept just how unusual superhero stories can be.



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‘First Match’ Film Review: Netflix’s Female-Wrestler Drama Needs Breathing Room

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The premise of “First Match,” lamentably, is an all-too-believable one. Fifteen-year-old Monique (Elvire Emanuelle), a foster kid in ungentrified Brooklyn, makes impulsive mistake after impulsive mistake until she ends up getting beaten up and bloody for money.

When we meet her, she’s in the process of being kicked out of her latest home for sleeping with her foster dad. Craving the approval of her own father, the just-paroled Darrel (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, “The Get Down”), Monique joins the wrestling team in a bid for his affection. Seeing his own athletic potential flickering in his daughter, Darrel decides to cash in on her talent by pushing her into underground fighting, where he can bet on her in the way that comes most naturally to him.

Written and directed by first-timer Olivia Newman, this Netflix coming-of-age melodrama is dogged by a faint but lingering whiff of poverty porn. The film also has much to praise about it: a fantastic lead performance by Emanuelle, gleamingly naturalistic cinematography (by Ashley Connor, “The Miseducation of Cameron Post”), and smart insights into the tolls of instability, especially for teenage girls and young women.

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Monique is eagle-eyed, too, which makes the acidity of her frequent outbursts that much more caustic when they’re aimed at her sole pal Omari (Jharrel Jerome, “Moonlight”), a second foster mother (Kim Ramirez), and others trying their best to help her.

According to the press notes, “First Match” was born from Newman’s observations of girl wrestlers in the NYC area, whose numbers are on the rise, though not so much that they get to compete one another. Monique is the only girl on her team, and all her opponents are boys. As much as it’s a drag watching female characters get mistreated in the movies, the relatively easy acceptance that she finds from her teammates strains credulity.

Also Read: State of Shondaland: ‘Station 19’ Starts, ‘Scandal’ Ends and Everything Netflix Snagged

Monique’s sticky-sweet friendship with Omari doesn’t quite scan, either. But her tense, flirty bond with another player, Malik (Jared Kemp, “Luke Cage”), rings abundantly true. Monique starts a fight with his girlfriend over nothing early in the movie, but his desire to take his team to the state championships — and more importantly, to get a college scholarship based on his wrestling prowess — pushes Malik toward making Monique feel wanted, in multiple senses.  

The various layers of Mo’s relationship with her slippery father are peeled expertly, too. Even in his lowest, most opportunistic moments, his motivations are understandable, if far from noble. Darrel simply doesn’t comprehend his daughter’s idolization of and need for connection with him. Monique doesn’t hide them — certainly not her desire to have her dad adopt her and become her legal guardian — but she does allow the gale-like force of her wants to shove her into dangerous situations. You can almost see the inferno behind her eyes burn down logic and common sense as her emotions overtake her. She’s a teenager, after all.

Also Read: Gina Rodriguez to Star in Netflix’s Live-Action ‘Carmen Sandiego’ Movie

Newman doesn’t give the film much room to breathe, or to develop Monique as a person beyond her dysfunctions and the solutions thereof (an after-school activity, parental love). The film’s connect-the-dots approach to storytelling leaves it gasping for slice-of-life details. After her first day on the mats, we see Monique pulling out her blazing red extensions and clipping her once lime-green nails. Despite the many close-ups of Emanuelle’s face, we’re too often denied access to her character’s thoughts and feelings, as Monique changes up her entire look, identity, lifestyle, and social circles to become what she believes her father wants her to be.

Mo’s story feels rare, relevant, and real. But we’re stuck on the outside looking in.



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In Netflix’s forthcoming drama First Matchrising star Elvire Emanuelle plays Monique, a teenage girl from Brooklyn’s Brownsville neighborhood who builds a tough skin through all her years of foster care. After reaching out with her estranged father (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) she decides that wrestling is the only way to connect with him — but she isn’t wrestling other girls.  She’s wrestling boys…and she’s really good at it. The Emanuelle and Abdul Mateen joined us in the…

Kate Bosworth, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II to Be Honored at Sun Valley Film Festival

Read on: Variety.

Actors Kate Bosworth and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, as well as director Lynn Shelton, will be honored at the 2018 Sun Valley Film Festival. The event runs March 14-18. Bosworth, who recently executive produced and starred in “Nona,” will be presented with the Pioneer Award by Nat Geo WILD for her producing work. The honor marks […]

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II Joins Elle Fanning’s Patty Hearst Biopic

Read on: Variety.

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II will star with Elle Fanning in James Mangold’s untitled Patty Hearst movie for Fox 2000. The actor’s credits include the Netflix series “The Get Down,” and the films “The Greatest Showman” (as the acrobat W.D. Wheeler) and the upcoming “Aquaman” (as the villain Black Manta). Variety first reported that Mangold had come […]

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II To Star In James Mangold’s Patty Hearst Biopic

Read on: Deadline.

EXCLUSIVE: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who currently can be seen in 20th Century Fox’s The Greatest Showman, has signed on to star alongside Elle Fanning in James Mangold’s untitled Patty Hearst project for Fox 2000. Based on author Jeffrey Toobin’s bestseller, American Heiress, the story follows Patty, the heiress who was kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army in 1974 and brainwashed into becoming a bank robber and spokesman for the radical group’s causes before serving…

Zendaya, Hugh Jackman Bring a Circus to Life in ‘Greatest Showman’ First Images (Photos)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

See Zendaya, Hugh Jackman and Zac Efron bring a circus to life in first-look photos of Fox’s “The Greatest Showman.”

In the photos, exclusive to Entertainment Weekly, we get a peek at Jackman welcome the crowd to the show; Jackman and Efron taking a drink together at the bar; and Jackman taking costar Michelle Williams by the hand.

The most stunning photo is of Zendaya, who is swinging towards Efron donning a pink wig and a purple onesie.

Also Read: Hugh Jackman’s ‘Greatest Showman’ Footage Stuns With Emotional, Inclusive Musical Number

According to EW, the musical about P.T. Barnum, the godfather of the modern circus, took seven years to develop, plan and produce.

“Up until ‘La La Land,’ everyone was saying there hasn’t been an original musical in 23 years,” Jackman said. “So the prevailing thought in Hollywood was, unless you have a brand people know, it’s not a done thing. So it just took a long time.”

Also Read: Rebecca Ferguson Joins Hugh Jackman, Zendaya in ‘The Greatest Showman’

The film, directed by Michael Gracey, also stars Rebecca Ferguson, Paul Sparks, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Fredric Lehne.

“The Greatest Showman” will hit theaters on Christmas Day.

See the first-look photos below.

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‘Aquaman’ Cast Yahya Abdul-Mateen II As Black Manta

Read on: Deadline.

The Get Down actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II has landed the role of villain Black Manta in Warner Bros upcoming film Aquaman, which stars Jason Momoa as the title character, as known as Arthur Curry, king of Atlantis. James Wan is directing the DC superhero pic that also stars Amber Heard as Mera, Queen of Atlantis and Patrick Wilson Aquaman’s supervillain half brother ORM.
Momoa’s Aquaman made a quick cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and will re-join the team in…

Warner Bros Hones In on Actor for Villain Black Manta in ‘Aquaman’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Warner Bros. is in early talks with “The Get Down” star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II to play Black Manta in its upcoming DC Comics film “Aquaman,” TheWrap has learned.

James Wan is directing the movie, which features Jason Momoa in the title role. Momoa first appeared as Aquaman in Warner Bros.’ “Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice,” and reprises the role in this year’s “Justice League.”

Aquaman also features Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson and Willem Dafoe, who plays Aquaman’s adviser, Dr. Vulko. Momoa and Heard, who plays his love interest, will appear in November’s “Justice League” alongside Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot and Henry Cavill in November of next year. Warner Bros.’ DC imprint is also releasing “Wonder Woman,” starring Gadot, in May.

Also Read: ‘Aquaman’ Adds Patrick Wilson as Villain Ocean Master

“Gangster Squad” screenwriter Will Beal is writing the screenplay for “Aquaman” based off a treatment by Geoff Johns and Wan. Geoff Johns, Jon Berg, Zack Snyder and Deborah Snyder are producing the film.

Abdul-Mateen was a finalist to play young Lando Calrissian in the Han Solo “Star Wars” spinoff, a role that eventually went to “Atlanta” star Donald Glover. His next role is in Paramount’s “Baywatch” along with Dwayne Johnson, Zac Efron, Alexandra Daddario, Kelly Rohrbach and Priyanka Chopra.

“Aquaman” is set to hit theaters on Oct. 5, 2018.

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Yahya Abdul-Mateen II Joins ‘The Greatest Showman On Earth’; Dan Amboyer Cast In ‘Brawl In Cell Block 99’

Read on: Deadline.

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II has been cast in Fox’s musical biopic The Greatest Showman On Earth directed by Michael Gracey. Starring Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya, the film follows the story of the famous American showman, P.T. Barnum, as he creates the three-ring circus that made him famous. Abdul-Lateen II will play WD Wheeler, a hand-to-hand acrobat partner who is a smart, no-nonsense guy. Peter Chernin, Laurence Mark and Jenno…