Every year, Hall H is an exclusive invite that brings fans who have slept outside for hours an opportunity to get the sneak peeks of a lifetime when it comes to upcoming film slates from major players like Marvel, Disney and more. This year, Warner Brothers put on an interactive and innovative spectacle that introduced us to its 2018-2019 film slate featuring DC Comics characters come to life, more shenanigans from our LEGO heroes, and more Harry Potter world lore.
While seeing all of these were a highlight, nothing compared to saving arguably the best for last, Aquaman. In the final moments of the presentation, Jason Momoa (Arthur Curry/Aquaman) came out in an illusion of falling water and a roar from the crowd. Greeted by moderator Aisha Tyler, Jason was just as enthusiastic about the December 21 release as we were to see him. He told the crowd that this film had been years in the making, and we cannot wait to see him portray a character that we feel he was born to play.
While the first trailer for Aquaman left the internet and non-Hall H panel attendees shook, it was the exclusive footage and extended trailer with so much more Black Manta/David Kane (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) that most caught Shadow and Act’s attention. While Yahya didn’t reveal anything on the panel about his upcoming foray as Black Manta, the footage spoke for itself. The first look didn’t do it justice! The suit! The tech! All of it! We can’t wait until you all get to see him in action! We’re also curious to see how his villainous feud with Aquaman may intertwine with the evil goals of the film’s official Big Bad, King Orm (Patrick Wilson). Yahya couldn’t speak directly to how his character comes on the scene, but he was able to share one hilarious fun fact about himself. When he was booked for the gig, he didn’t know how to swim!
He said: “I tell my agent, this is great and everything, but I can’t swim. I just did Baywatch and all these other water movies, and I don’t want to be that dude, but I can’t swim. So, I actually secretly learned and taught myself how to swim during the mornings and during the evenings. The first thing I did when I landed was bought a pair of goggles and a kickboard. I went down to my hotel pool, and I was like, 'I gotta get ready!' There’s probably months and months of footage of me getting incrementally better and better. I was fine by the end, and I didn’t ever have to swim in the movie!”
Well, either way, check out the released trailer below and know that we’re sure Yahya’s reign as Black Manta will be something you won’t want to miss. Here’s to hoping that his character survives the fury of Aquaman so that we can see him in more DCU films to come!