Comic Book Movie Casting Rumors: Kato & Black Panther

Published 6 years ago by , Updated August 22nd, 2013 at 6:57 pm,

[UPDATE: Check Out Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje talking to MTV about Black Panther!]

Today we take the rumor ride once again, this time pertaining to comic book movies and characters. It is being rumored (from two different sources) that Korean actor Kwon Sang-woo is in the running to replace Stephen Chow as The Green Hornet‘s Kato, and Lost’s Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (aka Mr. Eko) is in talks to bring The Black Panther to life.



Nate (via HanCinema and Twitchfilm) is reporting that Kwon Sang-woo is in the running to portray Kato in the upcoming Seth Rogen/Michel Gondry comic book movie, The Green Hornet. This comes after Stephen Chow walked away from the project first as director, then as Kato. Kwon is a former model who went on to star in such films as Volcano High, My Tutor Friend and Once Upon A Time In High School. He is considered, because of his looks and physique, as part of the “mom-zzang” or “great body” movement.

He was described in relation to the role of Kato to have received “a love call” for the film, and although his English isn’t 100%, the audition with Rogen was “successful.” If he were to get this role, it certainly would gain him exposure, and possible success, in Hollywood that he’s only had in South Korea thus far. He’s at least partly suited to the role of Kato, since he has experience doing action.

Can someone remind me why, exactly, the casting call for Kato mentioned that the actor doesn’t need to have martial arts experience?…



Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (or “Triple A” as he’s been often nicknamed) spoke to MTV at Comic-Con where he said that he’s talking to Marvel about bringing the Marvel character, Black Panther, to the big screen. Here is what he said about the character and a potential movie about him:

“We’re talking to Marvel about ‘Black Panther… This is the first round, so you know, hopefully they’ll look at ‘G.I. Joe’ and see the potential. But it’s about time we have a black superhero, isn’t it?”

“He’s from a fictional village in Africa and the timing is so right for that kind of character to come through… And while I’m in my prime, this is the time. We’ve got [U.S. President Barack] Obama, now we need something on screen to represent, so… ‘Panther,’ man.”

Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, Black Panther is one of the lesser-known characters from the Marvel universe (at least compared to the likes of Spider-Man and The Hulk), and one of the first modern black superheroes. His abilities include the likes of superhuman acute senses and genius intellect. I personally think Triple A is a good fit to play the character – he certainly has the physical build and he’s a really good actor to boot.

adewale akinnuoye agbaje black panther Comic Book Movie Casting Rumors: Kato & Black Panther

Getting a talented actor to play our comic book heroes is never a bad thing, right?…

Here’s what Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje had to say to MTV News about the potential role:

For now, take these two rumors as exactly that… rumors. There’s nothing particularly “off” about either of them, but there’s not enough information there to count either as for definite just yet.

Stay tuned to Screen Rant for confirmations or disputes.

For the sake of discussion, what would you think about Kwon Sang-woo playing Kato and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje playing Black Panther? Are they the right actors to play the respective roles?

The Green Hornet is scheduled to be released on July 9th, 2010, while Black Panther is just in the idea stage.

Sources: HanCinema, MTV Splash Page, Nate and Twitch

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  1. Kwon Sang-woo should be a great fit for Kato. No martial arts experience needed, hollywood made Keanu Reeves look as if he knew something in the Matrix.
    Adwale is as perfect for Black Panther as Djimon Hjissou(doing the voice for the animated series) if Djimon doesn’t do the movie, then Adwale would be just as great. Also, people always forget about Blade don’t they, not only the first black superhero on film, but the film that restarted the superhero genre after it was almost destroyed by Batman & Robin.

    • AH AH Ahh! Blade was not the first on film. Anyone remember SPAWN with Mike Jai White? (I LIKED IT but could be much better now) Blade was second… Or was there another one we may be forgetting.

  2. Yeah, people do seem to forget about Blade, don’t they? I don’t have a problem with this actor playing Pather; I liked him in Mummy 2. He also looks like he could be related to Eddie Murphy but since he’s not native to America, I seriously doubt that.

  3. Nothing against Triple A, but I’d prefer Chiwetel Ejiofor; he’s one of the best thirysomething actors in Hollywood right now.

  4. I want Djimon Honsou for Black Panther! He seems perfect for the role to me, though he wouldn’t be the first black superhero, cause there’s Blade and we could say Nick Fury and Hancock

  5. @ JJ

    Wow, I agree about Chiwetal Ejiofor. He’s a martial arts practitioner and an amazing actor. Now I want him as Panther also as my favorite.

  6. Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje could totally play a believable African.

  7. Terrible idea. Kwon Sang Woo is one of the most boring actors in Korea showbiz. He is pretty, but just that, and nothing else. A model and not an actor. AND his martial arts / action ability is worse than almost anything in US film. This is a mistake. There are so many other talented Asian actors out there, find a real Kato‚Ķ He can’t even speak English!!!

  8. I have to agree with JJ. Chiwetel Ejiofor is the man to play the Black Panther. He’s both a great actor and has the matinee idol looks to lead a film. Kwon Sang Woo isn’t a good choice for Kato though. Kato is the original bad-ass! Martial arts experience is an absolute MUST for this role. I know this is acting we’re talking about. But I’m not sure you can learn karate, kung fu and ju jitsu via the Stanislavsky method. Pass on Woo and pick someone else. What about Jet Lee? He channeled Kato in one of his films — even dressed up like him.

  9. Tony & Mojo I AGREE!!! Kwon Song Woo SUX at everything need for a great Kato… Kwon will single handedly flop this film. Kato such an important character and Kwon is a joke of an option… Find another Kato!!!

  10. Yup Tony & Mojo,
    Kwon Sang Woo is the worst pick for Kato ever. He sux at everything needed for a Kato. He is a model turned bad soap actor. Are you kidding me??? A world wide search and that’s what you came up with?? I saw an interview with him and you can’t understand a word of his English. Find a better Kato, don’t disgrace Bruce Lee

  11. Great casting choice for the black panther…. any chance they will get this in gear before avengers comes out?

  12. Check out From heroes to icons. Comic book movies: The Black Panther. My opinion but. But a half way decent one though.

  13. Both choices are acceptable to me.
    But right now,I just cant get too psyched about The Green Hornet .
    Cool car at the con though.

  14. Jett Li or Donnie Yen would be much better for Kato. Don’t know this Song guy; this project keeps getting worse everytime I hear anything about it.

  15. Finally!!! The Black Panther on the big screen, and Triple AAA would be adequate but T’Challa should be portrayed as a young prince taking over and becoming a new king, so perhaps someone a little younger. I remember the four issue limited series back in the day, where Panther fought The Supremicists and eventually lost the favor of his own god and had to fight HIM to prove his worth. BP was always one of those comics that didn’t sell alot but had very interesting stories, I think of Kirby’s art and Panther’s management of Wakanda’s Vibranium and the inevitable run-in with Klaw – master of sound. QUESTION – If a Panther movie is in the works, and The Avengers proceeds as planned, will T’Challa be in The Avengers 2? I know you’re all drooling over this one!

  16. Actually I think Spawn was the first black movie superhero. I always considered Blade to be more of a horror film than a superhero film.

  17. I agree , Donnie yen would be better choice for Kato.