Michael B. Jordan has to keep turning down roles playing revered black figures as he just gets too many similar offers.
According to Deadline.com, at a Produced By conference in Los Angeles on Saturday (June 8, 2019), the star revealed that since his breakthrough movie role in Ryan Coogler’s real-life 2013 drama Fruitvale Station, he’s been asked to play, “every historical black figure”.
However, explaining how he is careful about choosing his projects, the Black Panther star said: “As much as I would love to play all of them, I can’t.”
One role he has taken, however, is that of lawyer and social justice activist Bryan Stevenson, who took on the case of Walter McMillian, an African-American man wrongly imprisoned of murder in the 1980s. He will play Bryan in Destin Daniel Cretton’s forthcoming drama Just Mercy, which is due out next year.
Michael was one of the first stars to incorporate an inclusion rider ensuring diverse hiring policies for any project he works on, and uses his production firm, The Outlier Society, to get socially conscious projects off the ground as well as major blockbusters.
Asked what helps him choose his roles, the 32-year-old explained: “Starting in front of the camera, from the actor’s perspective, it’s all about the heart. It’s about wanting to create bodies of work and tell stories that will make people go home and think thoughts that will weigh heavily on their heart.”
“We try to balance that as much as you can, to run a company where it’s not its entire identity but, at the same time it’s as an important silo and something that we care about.”