The world of super-heroes is about to get a lot more diverse as transgender model, activist and YouTuber Chella Man has been cast to play ‘Jericho’ in season 2 of the live-action TV series Titans.
The 20-year-old, who identifies as Jewish/Chinese-American, deaf and genderqueer, announced the news on his social media where he has developed a large following documenting his transition including top surgery and hormone replacement.
In his Instagram post announcing the news of his new acting gig, Man shared, “As a trans, Deaf, Jewish person of color, I have always reminded myself of the power in my differences.”
“It is a dream come true, now, as I will be able to showcase this power on the Titans,” he continued. “HUGE thank you to all who have supported me throughout this process!”
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…SECRET’S OUT! It is UNREAL to finally announce I will be making my acting debut as Jericho on Season 2 of @titansnetflix with @thedcuniverse ! In the comics, the character has always used sign language, as his vocal cords severed by assassins. Jericho’s mysterious powers are activated by his gaze — if he locks eyes with people he can control their bodies. As a trans, Deaf, Jewish person of color, I have always reminded myself of the power in my differences. It is a dream come true, now, as I will be able to showcase this power on the Titans. HUGE thank you to all who have supported me throughout this process! Can’t wait for you all to see it! Photo: @maryvbenoit Art: @dccomics
Man’s super-hero character, Jericho, has the ability to possess and control the body of anyone he makes eye contact with. He communicates through sign language as he was rendered mute as a youth when kidnappers severed his vocal cords.
When Jericho possesses another body, he can communicate using that person’s voice, vocabulary and language. The producers of Titans describe the character as a “gentle natured yet proud hero.”
The character first appeared in 1984’s Tales of the Teen Titans #43, and is the son of longtime villain, Deathstroke. Esai Morales has been cast as the father and will join the show in season 2 with Man.
While the original Tales of the Teen Titans comic books in the 1980s didn’t address his sexuality, his modern incarnation is openly bisexual and has an edgier quality.
Man joins the series which debuted last fall as the first original programming for the DC Universe subscription streaming site.
The show follows a team of young super-heroes led by Batman-side kick Robin, the empath Raven, alien princess Starfire and shape-shifting Beast Boy.
Director/producer Greg Berlanti (Love, Simon; Riverdale; The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) is a member of the Titans producing team.
Filming for season 2 of Titans is scheduled to begin next month.