Following his sole outing as Johnny Storm, a.k.a. The Human Torch, in 2015’s Fantastic Four, Michael B. Jordan got a second bite at the proverbial superhero movie apple when he played Erik “Killmonger” Stevens in 2018’s Black Panther. This marked his third collaboration with director Ryan Coogler, with the two of them having previously worked on Fruitvale Station and Creed together, and let’s not forget he also later made a surprise appearance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. So naturally Coogler knows Jordan pretty well, so when he compared the actor’s career to that of athletes Tom Brady and LeBron James, you can be sure he knows what he’s talking about.
With Michael B. Jordan being listed as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2023, Ryan Coogler wrote the entry dedicated to him. Before going into how the actor made his directorial debut with the 2023 new movie release Creed III, and how his frequent collaborator’s “best work is still to come,” the filmmaker had this to say:
Although a lot of moviegoers may not have learned who Michael B. Jordan until movies like Fruitvale Station, Fantastic Four and Creed came out, as Ryan Coogler noted, he’s been acting since 1999, with his earliest credits being guest spots on the TV shows The Sopranos and Cosby, followed by his film debut in 2001 with Hardball. By the following year though, he starred recurring on The Wire on Wallace, and then he played Reggie Porter Montgomery on All My Children for three years. Factor in his roles on Friday Night Lights and Parenthood, mot to mention various guest appearances on other shows and pop-ups in movies, and there’s definitely no question that he’s been paying his acting dues longer than Tom Brady and LeBron James have respectively been playing football and basketball. It’s also a reminder of how good the man looks for age 36.
Fortunately for Jordan’s fans, he has plenty of other projects coming up, although none of them have been specifically dated yet. In January, it was announce that Rainbow Six, the sequel to Without Remorse, is finally moving forward, and he’s also still attached to projects like Wrong Answer, Methuselah, and a remake of The Thomas Crown Affair. Additionally, plans are in motion to not just make Creed IV, but flesh out the franchise with various spinoffs, although it’s unclear if Jordan would be involved in all those.
If you missed out on seeing Creed III in theaters, it’s now available to watch on VOD, while those who’d like to re-experience Michael B. Jordan’s quick appearance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever can do so with a Disney+ subscription. As for Ryan Coogler, he’s involved as a producer in a number of projects on the way, including the upcoming Marvel TV shows Ironheart and untitled Wakanda series, as well as Regina King’s Bitter Root film adaptation.