'The Matrix 4' Gives 'Aquaman' Star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II The Red Pill

Everyone was totally caught off guard when news of a new installment in The Matrix franchise was announced back in August. Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss are reprising their roles as Neo and Trinity for the sequel, but only Lana Wachowski is said to be coming back to direct, with Lily Wachowski seemingly sitting this one out. But along with familiar faces returning in The Matrix 4 cast, there will be some new ones in the mix too, and one of them is Aquaman villain Yahya Abdul-Mateen II.

Variety has word on Yahya Abdul-Mateen II joining The Matrix 4 cast. As for who he is playing, that hasn't been made clear. While there have been rumors of a young Morpheus being involved in the story somehow, reporter Justin Kroll said he couldn't get confirmation on that. Here's what he wrote on Twitter:

Laurence Fishburne played the role of Morpheus in The Matrix and the two sequels that followed. If Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss are both reprising their roles in The Matrix 4, then why couldn't Fishburne return in his same role as well? Perhaps that's why there's a chance Abdul-Mateen may be playing a character with ties to Morpheus instead of a young version of the character.

Abdul-Mateen has been on a hot streak lately: there was his somewhat underdeveloped role as Black Manta in Aquaman, a supporting role in Jordan Peele's Us, and a starring role in an episode of Black Mirror. Next we'll see him in HBO's new Watchmen series, and he's also taking on the lead role in Candyman, the forthcoming remake of the horror property that is being produced by Jordan Peele. Plus, he's got a role in Aaron Sorkin's Trial of the Chicago 7.

As for the return of The Matrix franchise, it's hard to know what to expect with plot details being kept under tight wraps. However, with a script from Wachowski, Aleksandar Hemon and David Mitchell already complete, Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures are hoping to begin production sometime in early 2020. While I'm extremely curious about The Matrix 4, I must say that not having both of the Wachowskis back behind the camera makes me a little cautious. Why is Lana Wachowski returning while Lily Wachowski is staying away? Hopefully this won't feel like a cash grab revival and actually has a good reason for jacking back in.