Marvel recently confirmed the news that Alfre Woodard (12 Years a Slave, Annabelle) has joined the cast of its Luke Cage Netflix series. That official announcement came with a lot of information regarding the show's plot and some of its characters. Let's start off with the official plot summary for the series:
After a sabotaged experiment leaves him with super strength and unbreakable skin, Luke Cage (Mike Colter) becomes a fugitive trying to rebuild his life in modern day Harlem, New York City. But he is soon pulled out of the shadows and must fight a battle for the heart of his city--forcing him to confront a past he had tried to bury.
The announcement goes on to shed some light on the characters that will be in the series. Woodard will play a character named Mariah Dillard, who is a local Harlem politician. She is also the cousin of Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes (Mahershala Ali). Dillard is "looking to bring a new era of change to the streets she grew up on. Her personal life and professional career are thrown into turmoil by both Harlem's newest hero Luke Cage as well as her cousin Cottonmouth's nefarious acts." It is rumored that Dillard will end up being the villain Black Mariah.
Executive Producer/Head of Marvel Television Jeph Loeb talked about Woodard taking on Dillard, saying:
“Alfre has an incredible, unique, and intimidating presence on screen that makes her perfect as a leader of the Harlem community. We couldn’t be more excited that an actress as celebrated and talented as Alfre has decided to join us on this adventure.”
Other actors involved with the series include Frank Whaley (Pulp Fiction, Broken Arrow, Gotham) in the role of Detective Rafael Scarfe. Simone Missick will play Missy, described by Deadline as "a woman with a strong sense of justice." There's a good chance that she is actually playing the metahuman private detective Misty Knight, but we'll have to wait and see if that's how it plays out. Theo Rossi (Sons of Anarchy) was cast in the role of Shades, who is a career criminal that is another villain Cage has to deal with. Rosario Dawson will reprise her role of Claire Temple from Daredevil.
There's no word on when the series will premiere, but I imagine it will happen in the fall of 2016.