Before Marvel’s Netflix Luke Cage series premieres next year, the character will make his debut (played by Mike Colter) on the "Jessica Jones" Netflix/Marvel series, which now has an official premiere date, per the just-released teaser embedded below.
It’s all part of Netflix’s announced strategy that will see the streaming platform release a new Marvel superhero series every six months, each focusing on members of a group of comic book heroes called The Defenders – a kind of street-level Avengers team.
The first in the series, "Daredevil," premiered earlier this year to rave reviews. Up next will be the "Jessica Jones" series, whose release is now officially dated for November 20, 2015.
And after Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage series will follow in 2016.
Each of the above 4 series will be supplemented by a "Defenders" series whose characters include all 4 characters: Daredevil, Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage. They will join forces in a combined “Defenders” season after each has been introduced with its own first season, which I’d assume will come in 2017 or 2018.
So what can we expect from Luke Cage’s "Jessica Jones" debut, since, really, we’ve know very little about how involved the character will be in that series – whether it’ll just be a cameo appearance as a lead-in into his own series next year, or something more extensive? We know that Jessica Jones later becomes Jessica Jones Cage. The last name there should give you a hint as to what that means for the character. In short, Jones eventually marries Luke Cage. The couple had a daughter as well.
At the TCA (Television Critics Association) press tour in July, "Jessica Jones" executive producer/showrunner Melissa Rosenberg and executive producer Jeph Loeb shared details on the key characters in the upcoming series, and the actors who were cast to play them. Here’s the section on Luke Cage, courtesy of IGN: "What’s great about it is that, first of all, you get to meet Mike Colter and I think that’s really the thing that’s most generous of what Melissa did is to allow this show to offer him an opportunity for people to get to know him. He is important to the show and he is important to the story of Jessica Jones and who she is. It would not be Jessica Jones unless you at least understood how Luke affected her life and where she is. What’s wonderful about it is they’re still very early on in this world so who he is and what he’s doing and where he is in his story, allows us to tell a great deal of story that happens before and story that happens afterwards. So you’re getting him not quite in the middle, but sort of in the early part of the middle. So when we get to start on the Luke Cage show, you’ll have hopefully watched Jessica, so you know who Luke is, but his story and where he came from and most importantly where he’s going is what that series is about and so it will very much feel like you can watch that show and never have seen Jessica. But in the same kind of way, there’s something about — there’s only a handful of us that can actually say this — there’s something about watching Jessica that makes it feel like the same world as Daredevil but there’s nothing in it that makes you say “I wish I had watched Daredevil to understand what is going on.” It exists in it’s own way in the same kind of way that Daredevil exists in it’s own way and Luke Cage will be the same way and so will Iron Fist. Each will be a way of introducing the characters to the audience so that when they all do get together, you’ll have that same experience that you have when you went to go see the Avengers. It was sort of an extraordinarily bright light bulb that appeared above my head when I went “Oh, I see. Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America, make those movies then go make the Avengers movie. Let’s see…. Take the street level heroes and let’s see whether or not we can get to the Defenders.” We just needed a platform that was able to tell those stories in a way that they could be uniquely their own and in the same kind of way, exist in the same world and that’s what Netflix afforded us to be able to do."
So clearly, while it’s definitely Jones’ series, as it should be, Cage won’t be relegated entirely to the periphery. From what is shared above, it reads like Colter will have lots of screen time, and his character will be more involved than I originally imagined. It’s not mentioned, but I suppose we should then assume that Jessica Jones will also appear in the stand-alone Luke Cage series.
By the way, Krysten Ritter plays Jessica Jones (she and Mike Colter – as Luke Cage – appear in the above on-set photo).
David Tennant (Kilgrave), Rachael Taylor (Trish Walker), Carrie-Anne Moss, Eka Darville, Erin Moriarty, and Wil Traval round out key cast for the series.
Marvel’s "Jessica Jones" on Netflix is Executive Produced by series Showrunner Melissa Rosenberg (“Twilight”, “Dexter”) and Liz Friedman ("Elementary"), along with Jeph Loeb (“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Smallville,” “Heroes”), who also serves as Marvel’s Head of Television.
Watch the "premiere announcement" for "Jessica Jones" which Marvel released this morning – it’s just a "teaser."