Marvel's Ironheart Adds This Is Us Star Lyric Ross

As we impatiently wait for "Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever" to give us our first look at Riri Williams, the genius Black girl inventor who creates a super suit of armor that rivals Tony Stark, Marvel and Disney+ have continued dropping more news for the upcoming series, "Ironheart." The upcoming show is set to introduce a new and likely ridiculously important hero to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, presumably becoming one of the heavy-hitters in the next phase of the MCU. Dominique Thorne ("If Beale Street Could Talk”, "Judas and the Black Messiah") was previously announced to play the titular role, with "In The Heights" star Anthony Ramos starring in a yet-to-be-revealed role.

Today, we've learned that "This is Us" actress Lyric Ross has been cast to play Riri Williams' best friend. While the actual character name has yet to be announced, Marvel Comics canon would lead us to believe that Ross will be playing Natalie Washington. In the series, Natalie and Riri are best friends growing up, but they grow apart when Williams' newfound obsession with using her brilliance to prevent tragedy puts a massive strain on their friendship. It's heavily implied that Williams values her Iron Man suit more than their friendship, which brings an end to it. The character isn't seen too much throughout the course of the comics after this blow-up, but the situation would definitely make for a grounded conflict between the two characters living in a world of superheroes.

Who run the world? Girls

As the successor of Tony Stark, Riri Williams' Ironheart is poised to be one of the most important new characters in the MCU. The show is being helmed by Chinaka Hodge of "Amazing Stories" and "Snowpiercer" fame, but there's been no confirmation as to whether or not we'll ever get to see the inspirational crossover moment between Stark and Williams as seen in the comics. Marvel's chief creative officer Kevin Feige is understandably executive producing the show, but it's a really exciting sign that Feige seems to be so on board with making "Ironheart" the best that it can possibly be ... despite the little to no information released about the plot or tone of the series so far.

"Ironheart" was first created in 2016 by Brian Michael Bendis, Mike Deodato, Eve Ewing, and Kevin Libranda, debuting in "Invincible Iron Man." Riri Williams/Ironheart became a fan-favorite almost immediately, even inspiring a short film from real M.I.T. students, the school Williams attends in the comics when she creates her super armor. She earned a solo comic series two years after her debut, and following her impending mainstream popularity due to the MCU, she's sure to become a superhero staple.