Black Lightning
Cress Williams stars as Black Lightning in a new CW pilot. (CW and WB)

Cress Williams rocks new look for Black Lightning

Cress Williams wears an updated Black Lightning super hero costume in a first-look photo from The CW. The pilot currently is filming in Atlanta.

I’m not one to report much about pilots since, well, who knows if they will ever see their way to series? But The CW already airs five series based on DC Comics characters: “Supergirl,” “The Flash,” “Arrow,” “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” and “iZombie.”

So if anything is a lock, this is. Also, the “Hart of Dixie” alum rocks the new super hero costume.

“Black Lightning” follows Jefferson Pierce, who hung up his Black Lightning suit and secret identity years ago. According to the WB release: “With one daughter hell-bent on justice and the other a star student being recruited by a local gang, he’ll be pulled back into the fight as the wanted vigilante and DC legend—Black Lightning.”

Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil adapted the pilot from the DC comics character created in 1977 by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden. The Akils also created “Being Mary Jane,” “The Game” and “Girlfriends.” 

Black Lightning was the first African-American DC super hero to have his own stand-alone comic title.

“I knew way too much about the world as a young boy growing up in Richmond, Calif.,” Salim Akil says in the release. “I was no stranger to violence, death, hopelessness or the feeling that no one cared about what was happening in my life. Comics were a great way for me to escape. I was about 13 when Black Lightning was created, and finally there was a Black super hero that gave a damn about our neighborhood and our lives.”

“Resurrecting him at a time in our society when a sense of hope is lacking … Black Lightning will be that hope,” says Akil, who is directing the pilot. “And in updating the suit, it will signal to a new generation that it’s time to harness and release our power, and become our own super heroes.”

Laura Jean Shannon created the new costume. Her credits include the upcoming “Jumanji” sequel, “The Jungle Book,” “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World,” “Blade: Trinity” and “Good Girls Revolt.” She received a Costume Designers Guild Award nomination for her work on “Iron Man.”

The Akils, Greg Berlanti and Sarah Schechter are executive producers. It hails from Berlanti Productions and Akil Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Black Lightning costume
Black Lightning
Cress Williams stars as Black Lightning in a new CW pilot. (CW and WB)