Michael B. Jordan used Heath Ledger’s The Joker for Black Panther inspiration

Actor Michael B. Jordan drew inspiration for his Black Panther villain from Heath Ledger’s “captivating” performance as Batman’s nemesis The Joker in The Dark Knight.
The Creed star portrays Erik Killmonger in the new Marvel superhero movie, in which his character faces off with Chadwick Boseman’s titular Black Panther, the alter ego of T’Challa, the new king of the fictional African country Wakanda.
Taking on the role of the bad guy was something new for Jordan, and to prepare for the project, he revisited the late Ledger’s iconic performance in 2008’s The Dark Knight.
“Heath’s performance as a villain was so captivating, I couldn’t stop watching,” he told U.S. news show Entertainment Tonight. “I was like, ‘Man, OK, if I can get into that rare (place), you know, of just a character where people empathise, but still kind of understand but still are a little taken back (that would be perfect).'”
Jordan joined his co-stars, including Boseman, Lupita Nyong’o, and Sterling K. Brown, for the film’s Hollywood premiere on Monday (29Jan18), and he admitted he was thrilled by the fan turnout for what has become one of the most-anticipated superhero movies to date, with record-breaking advance ticket sales.
“I think it’s incredible,” he marvelled on the red carpet. “All the fans and everybody that’s outside (at the premiere) kind of like, you know, waiting and showing support (sic).”
Jordan had plenty of moral support from his own family at the showing, confessing he had a hard time choosing who to invite as his guests: “We were drawing straws,” he smiled. “It was tough at the house.”
The actor explained the premiere would be his first time viewing the finished film, because he wanted to “come into this as a fan”, and he is sure to be happy with the early feedback, with critics raving about the blockbuster, proclaiming it the best Marvel movie to date.
Fans will be able to judge for themselves when Black Panther opens in movie theatres on 16 February (18).