Black superhero Luke Cage will hit the big screen. The escaped convict with the bulletproof skin will follow Spider-Man to Columbia Pictures

By Gary Susman
Updated June 05, 2003 at 04:00 AM EDT
Luke Cage: ©Marvel Comics

After Daredevil, X-Men, the Hulk, and next summer’s The Punisher, the next comic-book superhero to emerge from Marvel’s attic onto the big screen is likely to be Luke Cage. One of the best-known of all black superheroes (an admittedly small list), Luke Cage is following Marvel stablemate Spider-Man to Columbia Pictures, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Neal Moritz (”2 Fast 2 Furious”) is producing, and a script has already been commissioned from Ben Ramsey (”The Big Hit”).

Popular during the 1970s and ’80s, ”Luke Cage” told the story of a former gang member, wrongly imprisoned, who volunteered for a medical experiment that went awry, giving him super strength and bulletproof skin. Once he escaped, he became a hero for hire. Later in his career, he partnered with a martial-arts fighter named Iron Fist, who’s currently the subject of a movie being developed by Artisan Entertainment, which is also making ”The Punisher.” Marvel stopped publishing its Luke Cage series in the mid-’80s, though the hero enjoyed a brief revival in the early ’90s. He also provided a pop cultural legacy by reportedly inspiring comics fan Nicolas Coppola’s stage name.