Aquaman is the upcoming (superhero) starring vehicle for Jason Momoa, who is beginning to realize the potential he showed as Khal Drogo on Game of Thrones (and as Ronon Dex on Stargate: Atlantis before that). As one of the DC Extended Universe’s newest stars, Momoa may have actually been born to play the role. Much like Chris Pratt drew on real-life experiences to portray Star-Lord in the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Momoa sounds ready to give DC its own version of art imitating life.
The man behind Aquaman, Arthur Curry, is mostly known as an outsider to the world above the surface of the ocean, where the iconic DC superhero can exercise his full powers. Momoa, who was born in Hawaii but was raised by his mother in a rural community in Iowa, felt a similar outcast kind of status when he traveled between the two places. It’s because of that struggle to fit in that he sees a lot of himself in Arthur Curry/Aquaman.
In a new interview found by Comic Book, Momoa opened up on playing Aquaman and how he can relate so closely to the superhero’s struggles to connect with the regular world. His upbringing as a native Hawaiian in a small town in Iowa made it tough to fit in, but he also had similar issues when he returned to Hawaii:
“How I identify with that is kind of being…a bit of an outcast. You see, he wasn’t really too accepted…I wasn’t too accepted … There weren’t any races where I grew up. There’s no Chinese, no Mexican, no Black. I grew up in Iowa. I graduated with like 100 people … I was born in Hawaii, so I would go see my father…[I] just wasn’t accepted on the local side by some people because I wasn’t raised in Hawaii. I identify as being that outcast and not really fitting into two different worlds.”
Momoa has already shown a lot of promise in his limited screen time on Game of Thrones, but Aquaman will represent his first chance to expand upon his cameo appearance in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. That Momoa is going to be reflecting his own real-life experiences in Arthur Curry/Aquaman’s struggle to fit in between two different worlds can only mean good things for his performance.
As magnetic as Momoa’s presence may be in the leading role, the writing of Momoa as Arthur Curry/Aquaman will still need to be top-notch to really drive the performance home. No actor can save a weak script, but Momoa is already at an advantage with his own experience as an outsider while growing up traveling between Hawaii and Iowa. The makers of Aquaman can at least be assured that the movie will have a committed, believable performance from its star.