Sony has a string of Marvel (though not Marvel Marvel Cinematic Universe) movies planned for the next few years, but none more exciting than Silver And Black. The Spider-Man spin-off film will centre on Silver Sable and Black Cat, two female characters who have worked both with and against the infamous webslinger.
Silver Sable is an Eastern European mercenary and CEO, from the fictional country Symkaria, who was raised by her tough father to hunt war criminals and shut down her emotions in order to be the most effective, both in the boardroom and on the hunt. She's never before been seen in Sony's universe, unlike Black Cat. Felicity Jones played Felicia Hardy (Black Cat's alter ego) in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, though nothing about her character suggested she was the acrobatic cat burglar often romantically-entangled with Peter Parker. In the comics, Hardy hails from Queens and is the daughter of a famous thief, who teaches herself different fighting styles and acrobatics in order to follow in his footsteps.
Both Silver Sable and Black Cat are tough yet vulnerable characters, which makes the decision to hire Gina Prince-Bythewood as the director of Silver And Black ideal. Anyone who has seen Love & Basketball, Beyond the Lights or even the new TV show Shots Fired can see how brilliantly Prince-Bythewood handles complex female characters, and these two have serious issues just itching to be explored on the silver screen. Prince-Blythewood has already spoken about casting, telling Vulture:
“I go to bed thinking about it, I wake up thinking about it, and during the day, I have my notebook where I’m jotting down ideas and visuals and music. It’s so up my alley in terms of these two female characters and who they are and what they’re about."
So who could play Silver Sable and Black Cat? Silver's Eastern European heritage makes it pretty clear that a white actress will fill the role, but Black Cat has the opportunity to be played by someone far more diverse. It would certainly be a bold move for Sony to hire a woman of color to play Felicia, especially since, so far, Black Panther is the only Marvel character of color to get a standalone film. The majority of Prince-Blythewood films and TV shows have had an actress of colour in the lead role so we can speculate that Black Cat will be given a diverse makeover. With that in mind, here's a few suggestions...
Logan's breakthrough performance as Samantha White in Netflix's Dear White People makes her an ideal candidate to play Felicia Hardy. She's got sass, sex appeal and an intense screen presence which are three of the most essential ingredients for any actress hoping to play Black Cat. She's also been relatively unknown up to this point - her other credits include Bratz: The Movie and the cancelled PlayStation Network series Powers - which means she won't be bringing the baggage of other big performances to this role. It would also be pretty cool if both actresses who have played Samantha end up becoming Marvel heroes after Tessa Thompson landing the role of Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok - another character whose ethnicity has been retconned for the big screen. At 28, Logan may be a little old to play Felicia if they make her Peter Parker's age in the film, but she's still an actress worth consideration.
The Brazilian-American actress is one of the shining stars of Netflix/The CW's Archie Comics TV adaption, Riverdale, playing the silver-tongued and sassy Veronica Lodge. Camila was cast right after graduating from Tisch School of the Arts and has so far proven she was a great choice for Veronica despite her lack of professional experience. Critics have praised her performance in the television show and at 22-years old, she's a good age to play Felicia opposite Tom Holland's Peter. Camila would certainly bring the international Riverdale audience to Silver And Black if cast but her Hollywood star power is still in its infancy so wouldn't jostle much with this comic icon.
Paris - who is of French-Canadian, Filipino and European descent - is 18, so would be a pretty young choice but, as she's got nine years of competitive gymnastics under her belt, she could certainly live up to the acrobatic expectations of the Black Cat role. The actress is mostly know for her Disney Channel work, in the shows Mighty Med and Lab Rats: Elite Force, but will be co-leading Netflix's new original high school comedy series Alexa & Katie. There will obviously be a comedy element to the Silver And Black (we hope!) and Paris' roles so far have leaned towards that genre but she's yet to prove herself with a more dramatic or complex part. Black Cat could certainly be the role to do that.
The British actress already has a superhero role under her belt (well, sort of) thanks to the cult E4 series Misfits as Alisha Daniels. Her character has the power to make people infatuated with her, just by the touch of her skin, and there are certainly a lot of people in the Spider-Man Universe who are infatuated with the Black Cat - Peter Parker included. Thanks to Netflix, Antonia has become a recognisable face in the US because of the popularity of Misfits (which is getting an American remake) and Lovesick (formerly known on Channel 4 as Scrotal Recall), and now she's got a featured role in ABC's The Good Doctor. Like Logan, Antonia (who's 30) may be a little old to play Felicia, but she looks so young she could totally play a high school senior.
The Iranian-American actress currently plays Princess Isabella in Shonda Rhimes' new series Still Star-Crossed and is one of the most enticing performers. The 24-year-old has popped up in various TV shows over the last few years, playing bit-parts in New Girl, The Catch, Jane the Virgin and Criminal Minds, and recently appeared in the film adaption of the YA book Before I Fall. That film was directed by none other than Gina Prince-Blythewood, so Medalion has already got a working relationship with the director of Silver And Black. Women of Middle Eastern descent are so rarely represented onscreen in leading roles, and especially in both Marvel Comics and the MCU, so it would be great to see Rahimi offering up some bold moves as Black Cat.