According to Latino Review, Warner Bros. has found its Amanda Waller for the upcoming Suicide Squad movie in Viola Davis. While there’s been no official announcement, the site’s sources say that, provided a compromise can be worked out with the Oscar nominee’s TV schedule on How To Get Away With Murder, Davis will be joining Jared Leto, Will Smith, Tom Hardy, and the rest of the cast in 2016, playing the government controller of DC’s team of supervillains.
Waller is one of DC’s most interesting characters: a middle-aged bureaucrat with zero superpowers who’s nevertheless capable of cowing heroes like Batman and the barely restrained psychopaths on the Suicide Squad alike, just through sheer force of will. Davis’ previous work suggests she’ll be up to the task, even if it does dash the hopes engendered by rumors that Oprah might take the gig. (Presumably, playing a ruthless older black woman who exercises Machiavellian control over everything around her might have veered too close to typecasting.)
Waller has appeared in a multitude of live-action and animated DC Comics adaptations as the face of the shadier side of government espionage. CCH Pounder voiced the character for the DC Animated Universe, as well as in recent animated films like the Suicide Squad-starring Batman: Arkham Assault. Angela Bassett took on the role for 2011’s Green Lantern, and on The CW, Pam Grier and more recently Cynthia Addai-Robinson have played Waller for Smallville and Arrow, respectively.
Including Sheryl Lee Ralph’s performance on Cartoon Network’s Young Justice, Davis could be the sixth actress to play “The Wall” in the last 10 years. The fact that the list of actresses who’ve taken the role reads as a ”Who’s Who” of Hollywood’s prominent women of color is presumably a testament to the strength of the character—or, if you’re feeling cynical, a reminder of just how few meaty roles there are for black women in modern comic-book adaptations.