Black Adam: What Hawkman’s “Sordid History” Means for the JSA

Exclusive: Aldis Hodge dishes on what Hawkman brings to Black Adam.

Black Adam Hawkman Aldis Hodge
Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures

Aldis Hodge has built a name for himself as a powerful character actor and vibrant creative force. In Black Adam, Hodge is taking on one of the oldest and most storied DC characters, Hawkman. A founding member of the Justice Society of America, the timeless superhero plays a key role in the upcoming movie. We spoke with Hodge about the impact of Hawkman and his moral battle with Black Adam himself. 

What first excited you about playing Hawkman?

ALDIS HODGE: It was his affiliations, his history, who he was to DC. He’s been all over, he’s been through so many different things. He’s touched so many different stories. When we first started, I didn’t know what journey they were taking him on. So I was getting excited thinking about what the next journey is for him. And I couldn’t wait to see what the costume looked like.

What does Hawkman bring to the JSA?

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Moral foundation. He has a bit of a sordid history, his past is peppered with barbarism. He’s truly a warrior. And he brings all of that to a point of making a decision to use his savagery for good. His choice, because of what he’s been through, is to reach for justice, regardless of what sacrifices are made along the way. Everybody who knows the history of Hawkman and why he is destined to constantly reincarnate will understand why his choice is what it is. He’s a man who’s constantly tested, and the thing that I love about this film is we get to see the friendship that keeps him steady, that friendship with Doctor Fate.

How was it getting to have Pierce as your BFF in the movie?

I don’t know if you know, but 007 is my bestie? Pierce is cool. That is the coolest brother. And they brought that to all the casting. Noah is one of the sweetest guys ever. Quintessa is amazing, really artsy, we still share art and fashion stuff together. 

What’s it like to be part of a new superhero universe?

We are part of the inception, we get to establish what some of those marquee rules are. We get to have fun with building out more, we get to be architects, and that’s what I love the most about this experience. Talking to Jaume [Collet-Serra], he was like, “So what do you want to do?” I asked, “What about the hair?” So when they told me, “Do what you want with the hair,” my boy, Art Williams—who has been a brother to me and my barber for 13 years now—we got together to design and create the hair for Hawkman.

Read much more about Black Adam in our exclusive cover story here.

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