Following the release of individual posters for both Rosario Dawson‘s Claire Temple and Simone Missick‘s Misty Knight last week, Marvel and Netflix have gone ahead and released photos for the antagonists this week. First up is Theo Rossi‘s Shades, a character that will work alongside Mahershala Ali‘s Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes. The poster, which you can view below, debuted exclusively through The Wrap alongside an interview with Rossi in which he teased the upcoming series.
Of course, as we’ve come to know thanks to both Daredevil and Jessica Jones, the Netflix shows manage to pull off some of the best stuntwork within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So it’s safe to assume that Luke Cage will continue that trend. When asked about the fight scenes, Rossi hinted that there will definitely be plenty of top-notch fight scenes incorporated throughout the season. As to his favorite fight scene from the series, the actor went on to explain that episode four contains a standout fight scene, although he did his best to avoid spoiling it.
TheWrap: Netflix’s Marvel series are known for their intense choreographed fight scenes. Will there be more of that with “Luke Cage”?
Theo Rossi: Their stunt coordinators are legitimately the greatest in the world. The guys they bring in are the top of the game. It started with “Daredevil” — those fight scenes in “Daredevil” were outrageous. And it continued on throughout. We just kind of take it to … that’s his thing, that’s what Luke Cage does — [he’s] just this bulletproof dude who beats the heck out of people … So there’s a lot of pretty incredible fight stuff.
As we’ve seen in the promotional images revealed thus far containing Rossi’s character, Shades wears sunglasses most of the time. For Rossi, what was it like to film most of his scenes with sunglasses on? Especially given that the Marvel/Netflix shows are known for being dark – and not just with their material? According to Rossi, for the most part, it didn’t phase him until he was filming, but as he explains, the shades are fairly essential to his character.
Shades wears sunglasses the majority of the time, which obviously limits your avenues for expression. What kind of challenges did that present for you?
I didn’t think about it, to be honest, until I was on set. And then all of a sudden you’re doing a scene, and you’re wearing these sunglasses in this dark nightclub, or these dark streets, because you know how the Marvel shows are — overall the tone is very dark. So besides the fact that you feel like you’re going to fall over every single thing when you’re trying to look cool, you have to figure out new ways to emote what you’re doing.
But it plays so incredibly well for the character because at best, and no pun intended, the character is super-shady. He is just a shady guy. He has this controlling nature, this very manipulative nature, so the sunglasses are kind of like this thing where you never really know what’s going on. And then as you watch this incredible story play out, it really starts to make a lot of sense. It sounds really weird to say that as an actor — it’s not like I was walking with a limp the whole time or doing whatever — but it is very odd to do something with sunglasses on, because an actor’s greatest tools are his eyes.
As fans of the comics know, while Marvel tries to retain the essence of a character when making the leap to live-action, they always give them a bit of their own twist. We can expect much of the same with Shades. As Rossi notes, the way most of these characters were written in the past just wouldn’t work in our world today, so they’ve been modernized for the show. For Rossi, he feels as though the way the characters have been adapted for the series, especially Shades and Cottonmouth, make sense because they represent real people.
How does your iteration of Shades differ from the comic-book version?
I think these guys, whether it be Shades, whether it be Cottonmouth, Misty Knight, to see them now, here and present, they’re very real. Sometimes in the comic books, especially in the ’70s, they could be written almost a little false, a little superhero-y. They’ve got the crazy outfits, there are certain ways that they’re larger than life in a way.[But the characters in “Luke Cage”] are really kind of street-level. I believe that I could run into these people at any time. And that to me is the biggest difference. I know these guys. Growing up in New York, I know people like Shades Alvarez. I grew up with people like Cottonmouth. I felt that way with all the series, with “Jessica Jones,” with “Daredevil” — you related to the characters.
Although we’re still nine days out from taking in the first season of Luke Cage, it’s hard not to think ahead. After all, these shows are becoming more interconnected leading up to The Defenders. Given the crossover potential, it’s hard not to wonder when we’ll next see an actor pop up. When it comes to Shade’s future within the MCU, though, Rossi isn’t sure about his character’s future as of yet.
Has there been any talk of you returning for another series or subsequent seasons of “Luke Cage”?
The way it works with Marvel — and it’s kind of the way of the business now, to be honest — is, I don’t care what level you’re at, they really don’t tell you anything. The way of the world, with social media, with the World Wide Web, everything is kept on the super-hush. Everything’s up to them. As of right now, I’m just super-excited for Sept. 30, and whatever happens and anything after that, you guys will probably be the second to know, right after I know.
And finally, as for Jessica Jones, a character many are hoping to see reappear in Luke Cage, Rossi isn’t willing to say whether or not she’ll be making an appearance.
Will Jessica Jones be making an appearance on the series?
Obviously her story is very tied in to that of Luke Cage. Who knows? Anything can happen on this series. Everyone knows that the night nurse, you’ve got Claire Temple bouncing around at all times, and she’s really that stitch that holds every one of them together, and Rosario [Dawson] does such an incredible job of doing that. So, everything’s linked, everybody’s in the same world — they’re in Hell’s Kitchen and we’re up in Harlem, so you never know.
The entire first season of Luke Cage will hit Netflix on September 30th. Until then, you can catch Mike Colter as the bulletproof hero on the first season of Jessica Jones, which is currently streaming on Netflix.
Source: The Wrap.