Michael B. Jordan earned universal acclaim for his Marvel debut as the villainous Killmonger in “Black Panther,” but it’s a role that came with great sadness. In a new interview with Rolling Stone ahead of “Creed III” opening in theaters, Jordan revealed that he avoided his entire family and didn’t interact with any children during the entirety of the “Black Panther” production.
“Killmonger allowed me to access the pain. And the unapologetic frustration that I had,” Jordan said about the role, which forced the actor to confront centuries of Black oppression. “But then, obviously, there’s a sadness that comes along with that. I dove into that for a lot longer than I ever had before. So coming out of that [role] it was hard to want love. Because during shooting I kept myself from family and children, and away from everything that Killmonger never had.”
During a 2019 interview as part of Oprah Winfrey’s “SuperSoul Conversations” tour, Jordan admitted that his role as Killmonger drove him to therapy after “Black Panther” opened in theaters.
“It was a little tough for me at first,” Jordan said. “Readjusting to people caring about me, getting that love that I shut out. I shut out love, I didn’t want love. I wanted to be in this lonely place as long as I could.”
“Your mind is so powerful,” he added. “Your mind will get your body past a threshold that it would have given up on way before. Honestly, therapy, just talking to somebody just helped me out a lot. As a man you get a lot of slack for it. I don’t really subscribe to that. Everyone needs to unpack and talk.”
Jordan reprised the role of Killmonger last year for a surprise cameo in “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.”
“I had to lie to my family over here. I had to lie to everybody out here… I had to just keep it under wraps,” Jordan told Extra about hiding his Killmonger return from friends and family. “When you’re dealing with Marvel and stuff like that, you know the routine. So you just gotta, you know, deny, deny, deny, deny, deny until the end of it, yeah.”
“Black Panther” and “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” are now available to stream on Disney+.