Michael B Jordan admitted he trained for a year and a half to get into shape for his role as villain Erik Kilmonger in Black Panther.
The 31-year-old actor stars as villain Erik Kilmonger in the new Marvel Cinematic Universe movie and revealed the intense training regimen — which he compared to a “Swiss army knife” — he had to do helped him prepare for the role.
Speaking to the Metro Online at the European premiere of ‘Black Panther’ at London’s Eventim Apollo on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, Jordan said: “I spent a lot of time alone. Erik’s a very lonely guy, a very pained character so that’s part of it. And also like physically preparing for it, working out, training, it was kind of a Swiss army knife of a lot of different skill sets. So training for about a year and half before we started filming really helped with the preparation for the role.”
The motion picture is expected to expand on the storyline that was first introduced in Captain America: Civil War of how T’Challa — played by Chadwick Boseman — becomes the Black Panther.
T’Challa’s father, T’Chaka, is king of the African nation Wakanda and has the ceremonial title Black Panther as the chief of the Panther Tribe, but is killed when a bomb goes off at the UN making his son the Black Panther.
Other actors in the movie include Forest Whitaker, who takes on the role of Zuri, an elder statesman in Wakanda, Lupita Nyong’o as Nakia and “The Walking Dead” star Danai Gurira — who portrays Okoye, the head of the Dora Milaje, the Black Panther’s personal bodyguards.
Jordan also admitted he thinks the film — which has been praised for having a predominately Black cast — will have an impact on children growing up.
He told the Daily Star newspaper: “I’d watch films growing up and I’d automatically play make-believe. I watched Blade and I saw Wesley [Snipes] … I was seeing someone that resembles me. I think about what this movie is going to do to kids growing up.”