We once knew Michael B. Jordan as the actor who shared first and last names with a basketball superstar. But Jordan has since forged a name for himself in show business, taking on a variety of projects that highlight his versatility as an actor.
On February 16th, we will witness him conquer the big screen as Erik Killmonger, the lead villain in Marvel’s newest superhero film, Black Panther. But hold up — did you know that Black Panther isn’t Jordan’s first foray into superhero films? It isn’t his first movie with director Ryan Coogler either.
If you want the lowdown on Michael B. Jordan (or should we say Michael BAE Jordan?), here’s a list of shows and movies you can watch him in apart from the Marvel flick. In each one, he further cements his status as the one to watch.
Michael B. Jordan’s first speaking role came with Hardball, a baseball flick starring Keanu Reeves. Although his role as Jamal wasn’t particularly a standout, it did give a glimpse of what he had to offer as an actor.
2The Wire (2002)
Many are familiar with MBJ due to his stint in HBO classic, The Wire, on which he played Wallace, a young drug dealer working for an operation called “The Pit.” His character was central to the show’s first season, and his performance was widely applauded by critics and viewers alike.
3Friday Night Lights (2009-2011)
Jordan further rose to prominence in 2009, when he landed a recurring role on Friday Night Lights. In it, he starred as quarterback Vince Howard until the show’s last season, and he stole the hearts of everyone while at it.
4Fruitvale Station (2013)
The 31-year-old actor was catapulted into fame with the indie hit Fruitvale Station, a biopic about Oscar Grant III, the Oakland native who was fatally shot by a police officer on a subway platform in 2009. Jordan brought gravitas to the role, which led to the Ryan Coogler-directed film winning the Grand Jury Prize at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.
5That Awkward Moment (2014)
On a lighter note, Jordan starred alongside Miles Teller and Zac Efron in That Awkward Moment, a rom-com about three 20-somethings who all vowed to stay single for as long as possible.
6Fantastic Four (2015)
MBJ first dipped his toes into superhero territory with Fantastic Four, in which he starred as the Human Torch. Even though the film earned subpar reviews, Jordan brought fiery (pun totally intended) energy to his character.
If you had to pick just one Michael B. Jordan film, Creed is definitely the one to see. In the sports drama, his second project with Ryan Coogler, MBJ stars as Apollo Creed’s son, Adonis “Donnie” Johnson. Much like his father, he wants to become a professional boxer, but he doesn’t want to be associated with his dad’s legacy. To pass an audition, he gets in touch with Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and asks him to be his trainer and mentor.