According to TVLine, Straight Outta Compton actor Demetrius Grosse has been tapped for a key role opposite Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in Marvel Studios’ upcoming Disney+ series Wonder Man. Grosse is set to play the titular character’s brother Eric Williams, who is also known as Marvel villain Grim Reaper. Production on the superhero drama is expected to start this coming spring.
In the comics, Eric Williams was introduced as the black sheep of his family, which led him to bitterly live in the shadow of his younger brother Simon. He ends up creating an advanced scythe weapon that has the capability to drain the life force energy of people.
The Wonder Man series is being developed by Destin Daniel Cretton (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) and writer-producer Andrew Guest (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Community), with Guest serving as the head writer and Cretton executive producing and directing some episodes. The project will be a part of Cretton’s overall deal with the studio. In addition to Cretton, The Photograph filmmaker Stella Meghie will also be directing multiple episodes.
The series will be led by Emmy winner Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Simon Williams/Wonder Man. He will be joined by Oscar winner Ben Kingsley, who will be reprising his fan-favorite role as Trevor Slattery. The character first appeared as the washed-up actor in Iron Man 3, where he pretended to be the terrifying villain The Mandarin. In 2021, MCU fans unexpectedly met Trevor Slattery again in Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings, where it was revealed that he had been imprisoned by the real Mandarin.
Wonder Man is one of the oldest characters in Marvel’s long history and was first introduced in 1964 in an early issue of Avengers. The character — named Simon Williams — was created by Stan Lee, Don Heck, and Jack Kirby, and was initially introduced as a supervillain who fought the Avengers.
In the late 1970s, Wonder Man was turned into a hero and eventually ended up joining the Avengers throughout various iterations of the team. Imbued with “ionic” energy by Baron Zemo, Wonder Man has powers similar to other superheroes, including enhanced strength, speed, stamina, durability, reflexes, and agility.