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Two New Marvel Projects Announced for Gallatin Alumni

Writers Chinaka Hodge and John Ridley Lead Ironheart and Black Panther Projects

Jun 10, 2021

Ironheart illustration

Courtesy of Marvel

The release of the 2018 film Black Panther, based on the eponymous comic book series, was a watershed moment for fans of Black superheroes. Grossing over $1.3 billion at the box office—the highest-grossing movie of 2018 and fourth highest-grossing movie of all time—Black Panther paved the way for a new generation of Afrofuturist graphic novels, comic books, and more. For Time Magazine, journalist Jamil Smith noted that Black Panther is “not just a movie about a black superhero; it’s very much a black movie. It carries a weight that neither Thor nor Captain America could lift: serving a black audience that has long gone under­represented.”

Two Gallatin alumni are telling new and exciting stories, as well as re-imagined ones, about Black superheroes for Marvel and Disney+.

An exclusive Variety post announced Gallatin alumna Chinaka Hodge (BΑ ’06) as the head writer for the new Marvel-Disney Plus series Ironheart, starring Dominique Thorne as superheroine Riri Williams (a.k.a. Ironheart), a genius inventor who builds her own suit of armor. Hodge is a screenwriter, poet, playwright, and educator whose past television writing credits include the Apple reboot of Amazing Stories,”as well as the TNT series adaptation of Snowpiercer starring Daveed Diggs.

This past May, Marvel announced a new Black Panther comic book series written by John Ridley (BA '87), the acclaimed screenwriter of 12 Years a Slave. The current Black Panther series, which began in 2016 and written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, will conclude on May 26, with Ridley's release in August. “It’s a hybrid espionage-superhero thriller, but at its core, it’s a love story,” Ridley told The New York Times.

Ridley is also the writer for The Other History of the DC Universe, a five-part comic book series that mirrors the 1987 History of the DC Universe. Through the series, Ridley re-tells pivotal events in the fictional DC Universe through the perspectives of nonwhite DC heroes Bumblebee, Black Lightning, Katana, and the Question.